In a study on North Indian population, more than 20% of the diabetics (duration less than one year also) were found to have microalbuminuria. Microalbuminuria (defined as urinary albumin excretion of 30-300 mg/day, or 20-200 µg/min) is an earlier sign of vascular damage and being an Asian puts us at higher risk.
In individuals with long – standing diabetes, microalbuminuria is the first clinical sign of impaired kidney function. Basically the main function of the kidney is to filter waste products from the body. A well- functioning kidney only eliminates the toxic and unwanted substances and those that are essential for the body are absorbed back into the blood stream. But, in case of some damage to the kidneys, proteins, especially albumin may be spill out into urine and this albumin is detected in the microalbuminuria test.
Signs and symptoms of kidney damage are slow and gradual thereby leading to detection in very late stages when much damage has set in.
The microalbuminuria test is a very significant marker and monitoring tool not only for kidney disease but also for cardiovascular diseases. Hence, therapies that prevent or delay the development of microalbuminuria and all measures that reduce it, may help to prevent or delay end organ damage.
Dr Pooja Chhawcharia is the Senior Nutritionist at eKincare with over 7 years of experience in Nutrition education, diet counseling and research. She is a Registered Dietician with the Indian Dietetic Association and Certified Diabetes Educator recognized by the International Diabetes federation . She is also interested in ancillary sciences such as Yoga and Naturopathy.