Physical well-being is taking care of your body so that it functions well. Along with proper nutrition, physical activity is important. Maintaining or improving your physical well-being through physical activity can slow chronic kidney disease (CKD) progression.
It is important to take part in regular physical activities that you enjoy, such as walking, cycling or swimming.
Regular physical activity:
- boosts your energy,
- helps you sleep,
- enhances your mental well-being, and
- strengthens your muscles.
With decreasing kidney function, you may find it more difficult to exercise, but it is important to stay active.
How much physical activity do I need?
How much physical activity you need depends on your overall health, age and physical capabilities. If you are new to exercise, you should start slowly and gradually build-up your activity level. The important thing is that you regularly do an amount of activity that you enjoy and is suitable to your situation.
If you are not sure how to get started or what types of activities are right for you, talk to a member of your health care team. Be sure to check with your doctor before starting an exercise program.
Sexuality and Fertility
Having CKD may affect your sexual relationships. Some couples become closer after a diagnosis of CKD, while other couples are concerned about how they will cope with effects of CKD on their relationship.
Sexual problems can be caused by:
- medications, and
- other medical problems such as vascular disease or diabetes.
Try to share your feelings with your partner. Your health care team can also provide you with treatment and resources.
CKD can affect your fertility, but it is still important to use contraception as women can still get pregnant at any level of kidney function.
If you are planning on getting pregnant, you may have to stop some medications because they might be harmful to your baby. It is important to check with a member of your health care team before you try to get pregnant.
- Active Living for Life Program A resource from the Kidney Foundation of Canada that also includes a sample exercise program.
- Walking: An ideal exercise for people with CKD Provides an overview of the benefits of walking and some helpful tips to start a walking program.
Includes an interactive Activities Index with information on activities to get you moving (everything from cycling and swimming to folk dancing and bowling). You can also sign up for Weekly Emails to help you reach your health and fitness goals.
- Sexuality and CKD
Outlines the causes of sexual issues, what you can do, and how to get help.