Most people know that the kidneys, like most organs, are important, but few have an understanding of what it is that they actually do. In fact, most of the time people talk about kidneys, it’s because of kidney-related disease, which may, regrettably, mean it’s too late to do much about the problem. But what if we could take better care of our kidneys? Understanding what purpose the kidneys serve, and what they need to function optimally can go a long way in protecting total body health. Otherwise, you may very well be putting your kidneys at risk with unhealthy behaviors.
The kidneys exist to filter the blood for the body. They take out wastes and toxins, which prevents such harmful substances from spreading to the rest of the body’s cells. They also are responsible for regulating hydration and nutrients, making sure all of the body’s cells have the correct levels of vitamins and minerals that they need. Without these functions, we simply could not survive. Therefore, it is in our best interest to take care of our kidneys by avoiding habits that harm them and practicing ones that help protect kidney health. Here are a few places to get started:
Too much salt can cause problems for your body, and that includes your kidney health. Salt, or sodium, dries out the body, which signals your kidneys to hold onto water. Furthermore, excessive sodium intake also increases blood pressure. Sodium causes the walls of the arteries to get harder and thicker, which makes it more difficult for blood to travel through them. The heart has to work harder to move the blood, which leads to increased blood pressure. Likewise, your kidneys have to filter excess salt, which puts more of a strain on them. Choose other spices instead of excess salt.
11. Processed foods
While the kidneys (and the liver) are responsible for dealing with whatever comes into our bodies good and bad, it is possible for them to become overloaded by harmful substances. These don’t always come in the form of bacteria and viruses. Sometimes such harmful substances come in the form of additives and artificial ingredients added to processed foods. While some of these can be beneficial, and harmful ones can be tolerated, in large amounts, they can cause damage to the kidneys as they try to filter them, thereby exposing the rest of the body to greater risk from harmful substances.