What is creatinine?

Creatinine is a chemical compound present in every body’s leftover energy-producing processes in the muscles. Healthy kidneys are known to filter creatinine out of the blood. Creatinine is expelled from the body as a waste product.

What is a normal creatinine level in the body?

Well, the creatinine level depends upon varying characteristics such as age, sex, person, size, muscle mass, and other health factors. However, a normal result ranges from 0.7 to 1.3 mg/dL ( 61.9 to 114.9 u mole/L) for men whereas it is 0.6 to 1.1 mg /dL (53 to 97.2 u mole /L ) for women. The results show that women often have a lower creatinine level as compared to men. 

What do the abnormal creatinine levels in the body mean?

High creatine levels

Due to certain abnormal conditions or other health circumstances, it has been discerned, that there is an uprise in the levels of creatinine in the body. The studies say that its elevated level signifies impaired kidney function or kidney disease. An elevated grade level is typically anything over 1.3 value, depending upon certain factors that include age, race, gender, and body size of the person. Sometimes, these factors may cause a person to have higher values than normal values.

What are the causes of a higher creatinine level in the body?

There are many reasons known to cause the elevation of creatinine levels in the body. Some of the major considerations include

The kidney functions

  • Glomerulonephritis, a condition of inflammation of the kidney structure that filters the blood.
  • Kidney stones that block the urinary tract.
  • Kidney failures

Other than kidney functions, some other factors can also temporarily elevate the creatinine levels above normal. these are

  • Dehydration
  • Higher intake of protein in the body two food or nutritional supplements.
  • Highly intensified exercises also increase biomarkers such as creatinine.
  • Certain medicines can also cause some side effects that temporarily increase the serum creatinine level or damage the kidneys.
  • Some health conditions such as diabetes, high blood pressure or heart disease can also damage these organs leading to increased creatinine levels in the body.

Symptoms of elevated creatinine level than normal

Symptoms of high creatinine levels depend upon the various causes

Drug toxification

Some medicines such as antibiotics, and cardiovascular drugs may cause kidney damage and affect kidneys as well. These may cause symptoms that include

  • Fluid retention
  • Fatigue
  • Confusion
  • Uneasiness
  • Breath shortness
  • Irregular heartbeat
  • Chest pain

Pyelonephritis

An untreated kidney infection may cause other health conditions to develop, people may also experience some of the following symptoms

  • Fever
  • Pain in back
  • Foul smelling urine
  • Frequent painful urination
  • Nausea

People with glomerulonephritis can cause damage to the kidneys and even its failure, its major symptoms are

  • High blood pressure
  • Proteinuria
  • Foamy urine mostly due to high levels of protein
  • Swelling of the ankles and eyelids
  • Pain in joints.

People with high blood pressure can damage blood vessels surrounding the kidneys, affecting them to release more creatinine. However, they may not see any specific symptoms regarding this but, a patient should regularly see a doctor so that they can detect issues during health screening properly.

Urinary tract blockage

Sometimes, the urinary tract gets blocked by kidney stones, two months or an enlarged prostate, urine can simultaneously accumulate in the kidneys leading to its damage and a condition called hydronephrosis may occur. Symptoms of these include

  • Painful urination
  • Blood in urine
  • Pain in back mostly around where kidneys are located
  • Nausea
  • Fever

low creatinine levels in the body

Load creatinine levels are usually lower than 0.7 mg/dL which indicates a problem which indicates a problem with lower muscle mass caused by a disease, such as muscular dystrophy or by aging. Lower levels also suggest that there is some severe liver disease or a diet very low in protein. Sometimes, pregnancy can also cause low levels of creatinine. 

Causes of low levels of creatinine 

The major causes of low creatinine in the body are:-

Low muscle mass

Creatinine level is often related to muscle mass. Lower muscle mass results in low creatinine levels. 

Liver problems

Creatinine is synthesized in the liver and an unhealthy kidney cannot manage to make the normal amount of creatinine. 

Unhealthy diet. 

Diet plays a very important role in deciding a patient’s health condition. Creatinine is mostly present in meat. So, those who follow a vegetarian diet may have low levels of creatinine in the body. 

Pregnancy

Pregnancy is also often caused by low levels of creatinine in the body that should return to normal after parturition. 

Symptoms of low creatinine levels

  • lack of strength
  • difficulty in exercising
  • inflamed liver
  • fatigue or nausea
  • feeling dizzy
  • weight loss.

How do increase creatinine levels?

  • A gentle exercise to increase muscle mass can help in this case along with a maintained diet.
  • Dietary supplements to increase creatinine under medical supervision in a safe range can also be considered to increase creatinine levels.
  • Maintain a proper diet, make sure to include all the important minerals and nutrients deprived in the body.
  • Try to maintain a proper weight.

What foods should be included and excluded from our diet to maintain creatinine levels?

Foods to include

  • Fruit such as grapes, apples and cranberries.
  • Include limited amounts of protein such as fish eggs, cheese milk and yogurt.
  • Eat more fibre.
  • Lower your salt intake from the diet.

Foods to avoid

  • Don’t rely on supplements or painkillers as they cause some side effects and toxicity to build up in the body that may prove harmful to the kidneys.
  • Reduce high protein intake in your diet as it may cause proteinuria.
  • Avoid using non steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs.
  • Avoid smoking and drinking alcohol.
  • Limit eating red meats.

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