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The kidneys are a key organ for overall health

How do the kidneys work?

The kidneys are one of the most important organs in the human body and play a key role in a number of vital functions. Yet many people don't pay enough attention to their issue of kidney prevention and health until they face a serious health problem. This article will provide you with detailed information about the functions of the kidneys, common diseases and basic ways to prevent diseases of this organ.

Kidney Anatomy and Function

The kidneys are located in the back of the abdominal cavity and are essential for many vital functions in our body. This paired bean-shaped organ is located on either side of the spine and each one filters an incredible volume in the hundreds of litres of our blood each day. The main function of the kidneys is to remove waste and excess water from the body, through urine.

However, the kidneys also regulate the levels of minerals and salts in the blood, help maintain a steady blood pressure and are involved in the production of the hormone erythropoietin, which controls the production of red blood cells. All of this ensures that our body environment remains stable and optimized for healthy functioning throughout the body.

Common Kidney Diseases

Among the most common kidney diseases is chronic kidney disease (CKD), which develops gradually and can lead to permanent damage to this organ. The disease often arises as a complication of diabetes or high blood pressure.

Ledvin stones, also known as nephroliths or uroliths, are solid crystals that can form in the kidneys from minerals and salts contained in the urine. Stones can vary in size, from very small, which can pass invisibly through the urinary system, to large, which cause blockage of the urinary tract and intense pain, often referred to as renal colic. The main symptoms are sharp pain in the side and back, under the ribs, pain when urinating, often blood in the urine, nausea and vomiting. The formation of kidney stones may be promoted by inadequate fluid intake, specific dietary habits, or genetic predispositions.

Less well known but no less serious are glomerulonephritis, inflammatory diseases affecting the microscopic filtering units of the kidneys. These and other specific disorders require prompt diagnosis and targeted treatment to prevent long-term complications and impaired quality of life for patients.

Factors affecting kidney health and prevention

The health of your kidneys can be negatively affected by several factors, including lifestyle and genetics.

High blood pressure and diabetes are major risk factors for developing kidney disease.

Prevention of kidney disease

Prevention of kidney disease is key to maintaining long-term kidney health and function. In particular, the basic steps of prevention are:

  • Maintaining a healthy lifestyle and regular physical activity.
  • A balanced diet with limited salt and protein intake.
  • Adequate hydration, preferring to drink plain water.
  • Control and proper treatment of diabetes and high blood pressure.
  • Limiting the use of medications that can damage the kidneys, such as some analgesics.
  • Regular medical checkups and kidney function tests to detect problems early.

Dietary supplements can be a risk but also beneficial

When taking dietary supplements, it's important to think about kidney health, as some ingredients can put excessive strain on these organs. For example, excessive intake of substances such as calcium, potassium or phosphorus can lead to mineral imbalances, which puts a strain on the kidneys. It's also important to be careful with supplements containing herbs and other natural extracts that can interact with medications or affect kidney function.

To support kidney health, some natural supplements may be helpful. For example, turmeric and ginger are known for their anti-inflammatory properties, and another popular supplement is cranberry, which is often recommended for preventing urinary tract infections. The omega-3 fatty acids found in fish oil may also help improve kidney function due to their anti-inflammatory effects.

However, it is important to approach the use of these supplements with caution and always consult a doctor to avoid possible drug interactions or overdose, which could in turn put a strain on the kidneys. This approach can prevent potential health complications and protect kidney function.

Natural support for excretion is important

Effective elimination is key to maintaining the health and purity of the body, as it removes toxins and waste substances from the body. Adequate fluid intake is essential to support a healthy excretory system, especially pure water, which helps maintain urine flow and thus supports kidney function. In addition, regular physical activity is beneficial, as it stimulates blood circulation and aids in the elimination of waste through sweat.

To optimize excretory function, it is also important to limit intake of salt and processed foods, which can burden the kidneys and reduce their efficiency. Last but not least, it is advisable to regularly consult lifestyle and dietary habits with a nutritionist or physician to ensure that all the body's needs are properly addressed.

The kidneys are an invaluable organ that deserves our attention and care. Prevention and early diagnosis can prevent many health problems and keep your kidneys in good health.