Hispanic Heritage Month is happening now from Sept. 15 to Oct. 15. It started off as a Hispanic Heritage Week in 1968 and has grown over the years into an entire month as the population of Hispanics has grown in the U.S.A. A person is defined as Hispanic if they identify as having Mexican, Mexican American, Chicano, Puerto Rican, Cuban, or “another Hispanic, Latino, or Spanish origin.” Pew Research Center found the population of Hispanics in the country grew to 62.1 million in 2020 from 50.5 million in 2010.
Chronic Kidney Disease (CKD) has quite an impact on our Hispanic population and Renal Care 360° wants to highlight that impact during this month. Although 1 in 3 Americans is likely to develop kidney disease at some point in their life, that risk is even greater for Hispanics and African-Americans. Risk factors for CKD include diabetes, high blood pressure, and heart disease, as well as obesity and family history.
According to the National Kidney Foundation (NKF), Hispanics are 1.3 times as likely as non-Hispanics to develop kidney failure due to the impact of Social Determinants of Health (SDoH).
The Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) reported that at least 14 percent of Hispanic adults have CKD, according to a 2015–2018 National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey and the CKD Epidemiology Collaboration (CKD-EPI) equation.
Diabetes is a major risk factor for CKD and Hispanic adults are 70 percent more likely than non-Hispanic white adults to be diagnosed with diabetes by a physician, according to the U.S. Department of Health & Human Services (HHS).
Hispanics were 2x as likely to be hospitalized for treatment of end-stage renal disease (ESRD) related to diabetes, compared to non-Hispanics.
One thing that can be addressed to work with this disparity is diet. Foods that are high in salt and processed foods, can lead to high blood pressure and increased risk of kidney damage, should be avoided as much as possible. Increasing plant-based food consumption could be beneficial in the fight against CKD. Regular exercise can also play a role in addressing risk factors. Our Renal Care 360° Registered Dietician Bethany Keith notes, “people with CKD can benefit from replacing some animal protein with plant-protein, which can be found in traditional foods such as beans, lentils, nuts, and seeds.”