“I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made.” This verse from the Bible comes to my mind whenever I think of the way in which human body works.
It is made up of billions of cells that function in perfect harmony and order. Each bodily part depends on the other, and they all work together to give us amazing abilities.
Our vital organs perform a multitude of important functions to enable our body to work properly.
Kidneys are one of these organs. They are found on each side of the spine, the right placed a little bit lower than the left because of the position of the liver. They are shaped like beans and they are approximately the size of a grown up’s fist.
They are made up of millions of nephrons, or miniature filters that filter blood from toxic products and liquids and send back the needed minerals back into the blood.
What do kidneys do for us?
- Purify 113 to 144 liters of our blood every day.
- Dispose of waste material in our body through urine, like different toxins, extra water, waste products created by our metabolism, and salts.The daily quantity of urine they produce is 0.94 to 1.8 liters.
- Balance the level of water and minerals according to our body’s needs
- Regulate blood pressure by constricting or retaining the pressure
- Regulate the production of red blood cells by excreting a hormone that stimulates the function of bone marrow
- Maintain a healthy balance of acids in our body
Let us examine what we should do to preserve the health of these precious organs.
Reduce sugary soda intake
People who drink more than two sugary soda drinks daily, could end up having protein in their urine, which is one of the first signs of abnormal kidney function. This finding is backed up by a Japanese study at Osaka University that included 12 000 people.
This habit affects the quality of blood vessels. They can become narrower and harder, which limits the blood flow to the kidneys and all the other vital organs. Even if you smoke two cigarettes per day, the endothelial cells in the blood double in number, which leads to the damage of your arteries. Numerous studies confirm this finding. One of them was published in Clinical Pharmacology and Therapeutics.
Have a good night’s rest
Our kidneys are renewed when we sleep. So, not allowing our body to rest and renew itself every day and having regular times of sleep deprivation, we put our kidneys at risk of damage.
Drink enough water
Being well hydrated is one of the main health prerequisites. Our kidneys are particularly sensitive to dehydration. Water is essential for our kidneys so that they can work properly and flush out toxins from our body. Otherwise, the toxins remain in the blood since the kidneys do not have the necessary material for draining them. The suggested amount of water per day is 12 glasses, according to the National Kidney Foundation.
A trauma surgeon, dr. Buck Parker has said that: “In the most serious cases, dehydration can eventually harm the body causing seizures, kidney failure and even death,”.
His suggestion is to drink water even before the feeling of thirst, which actually means that the body is already dehydrated. We should also eat fruit and vegetables every day, which naturally have a high content of water.
Empty the bladder as soon as you feel an urge
We should listen to the signals that our body sends us. Everyone holds in urine from time to time due to various reasons. If urine is retained regularly, the pressure in the kidneys rises, which could result in incontinence and kidney damage.
Do not consume too much caffeine and alcohol
Coffee is one of the world’s most favorite drinks, but it should not be consumed excessively.
Caffeine raises blood pressure, which puts pressure on the kidneys. Excessive alcohol consumption also puts a lot of strain on liver and the kidneys especially, resulting in their damage.
Avoid consuming too much salt
The less sodium we consume, the better, as far as our kidneys are concerned.
Sodium also increases blood pressure, causing the kidneys to work excessively.
The amount of salt we eat per day should not exceed 5.8 grams.
Be careful with analgesic medications and alcohol
Some of us resort to pain killers as soon as we feel the pain. It may be the easiest way to deal with pain, but not the healthiest. All drugs have some serious side effects and many of them contain ingredients harmful for our kidneys.
Eat a well-balanced diet with vitamins and minerals
Consuming big amounts of high-protein foods can be harmful for the kidneys.
On the other hand, the deficiency of certain nutrients, such as vitamin B 6 and magnesium, can lead to the production of kidney stones diet.
When our bodies digest protein, the byproduct ammonia is created. Our kidneys have to work hard to neutralize this toxic material. When we consume too much protein, more strain is put on the kidneys, which could cause damage in the long run.
Treat infections on time
Colds and flu can exhaust or body when left untreated for longer periods. We also tend to work excessively and not rest properly when we suffer from minor bacterial and viral infections. This could lead to kidney disease as well.
We should look after our health and do everything that contributes to our overall well-being. We neglect ourselves sometimes in order to fulfill all the obligations and perform the daily tasks but we should have in mind that taking care of ourselves and our health is the first and the foremost thing we need to do.