Your kidneys are one of the most important organs in your body, and serve many functions. They are shaped like beans and are about the size of an adult fist. The kidneys are positioned in the middle of your back, just under your rib cage. These organs are designed to collect the toxins in your body and eliminate them. Each day, your process around 200 quarts of blood to filter out 2 quarts of extra water and waste. This turns into urine, which is released by flowing to the bladder; the bladder holds the urine until you use the restroom.
Your kidneys also release three hormones that your body needs to function properly:
EPO, or erythropoietin, which prompts your bones to create red blood cells, renin, which balances your blood pressure, and active vitamin D, which helps your bones maintain calcium so that your body will have a healthy chemical balance.
If you are like one in three Americans who have a family history of kidney failure, diabetes or high blood pressure, you have an increased risk of having kidney disease. Even if you’re not at risk, you can increase the likelihood of kidney disease if you don’t take care of these essential internal organs. Here are some tips to keep in mind to keep your kidneys functioning well.
Make sure you stay hydrated, but don’t over-hydrate. Nephrologist James Simon, MD says that over-hydration does not cause the kidneys to function better. So, drink adequate water during the day, but drinking more than six glasses each day won’t help your kidneys to function better.
You should also maintain a healthy diet. Your kidneys can function well despite a variety of dietary practices. However, you can start developing kidney problems due to diabetes and high cholesterol. This is why it’s important to eat low-fat foods and to limit your sugar intake. A variety of fresh fruits and vegetables and healthy forms of fiber are also necessary for healthy kidneys as well as taking .
Dr. Simon also says that working out regularly can keep your kidneys in good shape. When you engage in physical activity on a consistent basis, you’ll be able to better manage your weight, which reduces your chances of high blood pressure. Just be sure not to overexert yourself and increase your weights gradually, since exercising too much too soon can strain your kidneys and cause too much muscle tissue breakdown.
Finally, there are also some supplements from you can take to keep your kidneys strong. Parsley helps your body to flush out impurities without making the kidneys do too much work. Chlorella is another helpful supplement for kidney health, since this supplement helps the body to maintain the alkaline environment that your kidneys need to function at their best. You can also take Uva Ursi each day, since this herb supports the urinary system and helps the kidney cleanse the body of impurities.