Diabetes and kidney disease nipped in the bud
by Sue Kira, Naturopath & Clinical Nutritionist
Apart from wanting to be very thorough when investigating my clients’ health concerns, urinalysis (a simple urine test) is a fast tool to screen many things. Most of the time, nothing shows up and that’s great, but often it uncovers lingering background infections, including early signs of diabetes or other potential conditions.
I remember a Japanese client, aged about 50, whose urine analysis indicated markers were present for diabetes and infection. She showed low and medium levels of protein, glucose, nitrates, leucocytes and an acid pH.
She told me those readings had been picked up by doctors for many years, but they couldn’t find anything else of significance. Consequently, the rationale was ‘this was just how she was’, and ‘let’s keep an eye on it’. But nothing had changed for more than 10 years.
I then asked about her family illness history. She told me her brother, who lived in Japan, had severe diabetes, was nearly blind, one kidney failed, and a foot amputated due to complications. To make matters worse, he was threatened with the removal of one of his hands, all due to not being able to control his sugar levels, even with strong drugs.
Apparently, his diet had not been changed, and as a traditional eater, he consumed lots of rice, especially sushi (which is sweetened rice) plus ‘diet’ soft drinks (not good!).
With this in mind, and after checking her blood and eyes, I could see she had the potential to go down the same path as her brother.
But unlike her brother she was dedicated to make changes to her diet.
She was taken off rice (yes, I know, terrible for someone who had eaten rice as a staple for her whole life, but we had to try it) along with using specific nutritional and herbals.
Within a few months, those markers that had been there for over 10 years were gone and her blood and eyes looked clearer. She felt so much better with more energy – which was the reason why she came to me in the first place.
If I hadn’t organised the in-clinic urine test and didn’t ask about family, I may have missed the real cause of her fatigue.
Incidentally, urine is tested using a Test Strip, called a Combur 9 test by Roche.