Whether you think about your kidneys or not, every day, these important organs filter 200 liters of blood, and sift out about 2 liters of water and waste that the body excretes as urine. The kidneys also balance the electrolytes (phosphorus, sodium and others) in your blood, regulate the amount of liquid in your system, and clean out waste – acids from foods you have eaten, products from your muscles, and leftover chemicals. Kidneys are also little hormone factories that affect the health of your bones, blood, and heart, and release: erythropoietin and calcitriol.
The most important thing about kidneys, that you should remember is that they exist to maintain fluid balance (homeostasis) in the body.
It is unfortunate that most people do not learn about kidney problems until it is too late.
What you can do now to slow down the process of your kidneys from aging. Here are 10 rules of good kidney health that you should incorporate into your lifestyle, starting today:
1. Stop smoking.
2. Rethink your diet – avoid soda, eat more veggies, fruits and whole grains, no salty or processed foods, limit animal products to lean cuts of fish or chicken a couple of times a week.
4. Avoid pain medications.
5. Pay attention to your digestion.
6. Stay hydrated – drink at least 6 to 8 glasses of water every day.
7. Exercise – 5 or 6 times a week.
8. Cut back on alcohol consumption.
9. Every day, do something to de-stress or decompress, like doing yoga or tai chi, listening to music, laughing with family and friends.
10. Take these herbs to prevent kidney stones and other problems, and to keep your kidneys healthy:
– Dandelion – high in potassium and rich in beta-carotene. Its roots can be steeped as tea, and the leaves can be eaten raw in salads. Or you can take 500mg twice a day.
– Stinging nettle – high in chlorophyll. Can be taken in tea (1 tbsp steeped in 1 cup of hot water) or supplement form.