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What Is Chronic Kidney Disease?

Chronic kidney disease is a condition in which kidney function gradually declines until the kidneys are unable to filter waste from the body. About 26 million American adults have chronic kidney disease. Kidney disease can occur in anyone at any age; however, some people are more likely to develop it. You may be at increased risk if you have diabetes, high blood pressure, or a family history of chronic kidney disease.

Over time, the deterioration of the kidneys may lead to complications, including anemia. Damaged kidneys are unable to produce erythropoietin, a hormone that helps create red blood cells. Red blood cells contain hemoglobin, the source of oxygen to the body. Fewer red blood cells mean less oxygen in your blood, and that could result in anemia.

If you have been diagnosed with chronic kidney disease, it is important that you follow your doctor's recommendations including dietary advice, such as monitoring your salt and protein intake.