Protein is transported by your blood to organs and tissues throughout the body. Our kidneys prevent protein from passing through the bloodstream. If your kidneys lose their ability to retain protein, then it enters your urine through your capillaries.
The kidneys filter waste from the blood while also preserving proteins in the body. In normal circumstances, protein would not be detected in your urine. However, some diseases and conditions allow proteins to pass through the kidney filters, resulting in protein in the urine. It’s not uncommon for young people to temporarily have increased levels of protein in their urine, particularly after exercise or during illness. However, consistently high protein levels in the urine can be a sign of other kidney-related issues.
Related: High-Protein Diets and Its Effects on Urine pH
Your protein levels might increase after exercise between 18-100%, depending on the type and intensity of exercise. People engaging in highly-intensive forms of exercise have been observed to have a higher incidence of proteinuria. It is without a doubt related to the intensity of muscular movements, and protein levels typically would decrease after prolonged training.
Dehydration occurs when your body loses too much water. It is a common, short-term cause for high protein levels in the urine. Water is used by your body to transport nutrients, such as proteins, to your kidneys. If your body doesn’t have enough water, then it will experience difficulties in delivering nutrients needed throughout the body.
Increased burden, depression, and anxiety can increase physical oxidative stress, which affects the renal system and causes an increase in protein in the urine. In other words, the more stressed you are, the more likely you will have an increased protein level in your urine.
Protein in urine is a common symptom of diabetes. It is usually first noticed when a routine urine test is performed. A small amount of protein in the urine is normal. However, diabetics may excrete up to four times the normal amount of protein in their urine.
When blood sugar levels are high, the body may start to excrete excess sugar through the urine. This process can damage the kidneys and cause the protein to leak into the urine. Diabetic nephropathy, or kidney disease, is one of the most common complications of diabetes. Early diagnosis and treatment of kidney disease can help to prevent further damage and preserve kidney function.
Urinary Tract Infections:
Urinary tract infections may cause protein excretion in the urine. It is common to detect protein in the urine of people who are experiencing UTI symptoms.
If you have a high level of protein in urine, you might consider some or all of the following dietary recommendations:
- Reading food labels can help you figure out how much calories, fat, and protein you're consuming.
- Complex carbohydrates (such as whole grains) have the greatest impact on blood sugar levels, which is important if you have kidney problems related to diabetes. Keep your blood sugar balanced by opting for complex carbohydrates.
- Increase your fiber intake by adding more vegetables, fruits, and whole grains to your diet.
- It’s important to limit your consumption of saturated fats and oils. Minimize the amount of processed food you consume, as well as reduce your red meat consumption.
- Limit your consumption of alcohol, and quit smoking.
- Drink enough water every day.
- Exercise regularly to help your kidneys control your blood pressure.