A lot of the advancements in modern life have also brought about new TOXINS. We are exposed to more toxins on a yearly basis than perhaps any generation who has lived before us.
How is your body handling all this toxic exposure? Well to be honest, your body is working extremely hard to keep you healthy, but can only do so much before it gets worn down and needs some help!
Last week we talked about your LIVER and how important it is to keep it running smoothly and I gave you some awesome ideas and recipes for liver detoxification.
This week we are going to talk about two of your organs that are also vital to filtering toxins out of the body and keeping you in the best shape possible:
Why should you bother with a kidney detox? If any of the following scenarios are familiar to you, then focus on cleansing your kidneys is definitely a good idea!
You are more tired than usual.
You feel pain in or around the kidney area when you eat certain foods.
You have acne, skin rashes, eczema or other skin problems.
You are feeling extra moody.
You have had kidney stones before.
You have unexplainable weight.
You feel bloated.
You’ve had a UTI in the past or other bladder problems.
Even if you don’t have any of the problems listed above, anyone can benefit from doing a kidney cleanse. Using the tips below can also be a means of PREVENTING illness and disease in your future.
What Is The Role Of The Kidneys?
Your kidneys are two bean shaped organs that are located in your upper abdominal cavity by your back muscles, one on either side. The role of the kidneys is often underrated when we think about our overall health.
The truth is, your kidneys are multi-tasking powerhouses that are responsible for filtering out toxins, excess salts and removing waste 24/7 over the course of your entire life.
Our kidneys are responsible for controlling a constant amount of fluid in the body. The entire amount of blood in the body gets filtered about 400 times each day through the kidneys. AND – they pump approximately 400 gallons of recycled blood daily!
That’s insane!!! Talk about a huge job, especially considering that so many people live in a toxic environment, including daily lifestyles.
Your kidneys receive about 25% of the blood that is pumped by the heart every day. This blood is then filtered and purified and either sent through the rest of the body or directly to the bladder as waste. Nephrons are the little filter systems inside your kidneys. You have about a million nephrons in each kidney!
Water Level Regulation
The average adult has 7-8 liters of blood. 92% of your blood is made up of water!Your kidneys are responsible for keeping the liquid levels in the body optimal. If there is too much liquid, the kidneys will dispel it through urine. If there is not enough, the kidneys will prevent/lessen urination until more water comes in.
Blood Pressure Regulation
Your kidneys create a hormone that can contract the arteries in your body. This enables the kidneys to essentially control your blood pressure.
Red Blood Cell Regulation
Your body has, at any given time, about 20-30 trillion red blood cells. Every second, about 3 million of these die and need to be replaced. The kidneys produce a hormone called, Erythropoietin that stimulates red blood cell production in the bone marrow of your body. Red blood cells are the main delivery vehicle of oxygen to all bodily tissues.
Our bodies are made to maintain a pH balance of 7.4 (slightly more alkaline than acidic). Both the lungs and kidneys act as buffers to counteract changes in blood pH that might otherwise sway the body out of balance. Acidosis (when the body becomes too acidic) can be serious and may cause fatigue, shortness of breath, confusion, headaches, lack of appetite, jaundice, increased heart rate, etc. If left unchecked, acidosis may also become a primary contributor to disease.
DID YOU KNOW: Most people are born with 2 kidneys but can live with only 1 if they need to! Scientists believe this is because the kidneys are so important, nature gave us two just in case one was injured. In fact, just one-half of ONE kidney has the ability to do the job of the 2 most of us are born with.
What Things Can Damage The Kidneys?
Although we can live quite happily with only one kidney, loss of function in the kidneys very quickly leads to trouble. Many factors can interfere with normal kidney health and function, including:
Some of the leading causes of kidney diseases are:
In people with diabetes, their body loses the ability to effectively manage insulin and blood sugar levels. If not managed properly, high levels of blood sugar can cause severe damage to the kidneys over time because it makes them to filter too much blood at a time. This can eventually cause leaks in the kidneys. Kidney damage caused by diabetes is called diabetic nephropathy. In severe cases this can lead to complete kidney failure.
High blood pressure is the second leading cause of kidney failure. This is because high blood pressure, over time, causes damage to the arteries throughout the body including the ones in the kidneys. When these are damaged, the kidneys cannot filter blood effectively and eventually lose their ability to regulate blood pressure all together.
Pain medicines (analgesics) are drugs that help manage pain, fever and inflammation. These drugs reduce blood flow to the kidneys and if used excessively over a long period of time, can cause severe kidney damage and kidney disease. Certain drugs like aspirin take a particularly large toll on the detoxification organs (such as the kidneys) and may temporarily (or in some cases, permanently) reduce kidney function.
For this reason and others, if you deal with chronic pain, I would highly recommended working with an excellent doctors to find the root cause so that you don’t have to be on these drugs forever.
DID YOU KNOW:In just 1 hour, kidneys receive around 120 pints of blood!
What Happens When The Kidneys Are Overtaxed
When the kidneys become unable to do their job, the body becomes overloaded with toxins and waste.
Kidney diseases don’t come on overnight, they happen gradually over the years, slowly wearing down or assaulting the nephrons (filter systems) in the kidneys until they become unable to filter. The kidneys will continue to perform until they’ve lost 75-80% of their function.
Sometimes people don’t realize their kidneys are suffering until years after the initial damage has taken place. That is why it is SO important to pay attention to your lifestyle choices NOW. Even if you don’t feel like your bad habits are affecting your health, more likely than not, they are! So don’t wait to change your life! Your health is counting on it.
Signs that your kidneys are in distress include:
Unusually low levels of urine
Swelling of legs, ankles and feet
Shortness of breath
Pain or pressure in chest
If symptoms of kidney problems are ignored, they can lead to kidney stones or kidney failure.
DID YOU KNOW: Your entire blood supply circulates through your kidneys about 12 times every hour. Pretty impressive for an organ that looks like two beans.
Kidney Detox Strategy
Don’t want to be one of the million Americans that has kidney stones each year? For a research-backed approach to kidney detox I recommend the following:
Step #1 Drink Adequate Amounts Of Water
The number ONE risk factor for developing kidney problems is DEHYDRATION. Figure out a way to drink enough water throughout the day. I recommend getting between 4-6 liters DAILY. Most Americans are walking around completely dehydrated and they have no idea. They are drinking everything BUT water and mistaking their THIRST for HUNGER.
Step #2 Limit Use Of Pharmaceuticals
When using pharmaceuticals, use the smallest amount possible and follow the directions exactly. Overuse of drugs can lead to toxic overload and studies have shown that certain drugs increase risk of kidney stones.
Use natural remedies whenever possible as these are not as hard on the body as commercial drugs. Always search for the root causes to symptoms that arise in the body so that you can work to completely heal and overcome them instead of spending your life treating symptoms.
Step #3 Avoid Or Limit Processed Foods
Processed foods are packed with refined sugar, soy, caffeine, excess salts, artificial flavors and colors and tons of mystery ingredients that can slowly wear on the kidneys. Excess salt in particular can be a major problem for the kidneys and cause a host of issues. Stick to a diet filled with whole fruits and vegetables, organic meats, cage-free eggs, wild caught fish, lightly salted or raw nuts and seeds, etc.
Step #4 Support And Cleanse The Kidneys With The Following Well-Researched Foods:
Parsley, a potent antioxidant has been found to significantly boost kidney health and may even be useful in treating early stages of kidney disease. (study)
Curcumin, the active ingredient in turmeric, has been found to boost kidney function and also help detox the kidneys of heavy metals such as mercury. (study)
Blueberries have been studied extensively for their ability to reduce oxidative stress, improve renal function and support the kidneys. (study)
Grapes have been found to have a protective effect against kidney disease. (study)
Olive Oil is high in oleic acid, an important anti-inflammatory that supports the kidneys and helps the body maintain proper blood pressure. (study)
DID YOU KNOW: Your kidneys have over 140 miles worth of tubes and filters to clean the 50 gallons of blood that runs through them every single day!
Recipe To Help Cleanse The Kidneys
According to detoxification specialist Dr. Robert Morse, N.D., juicing is an excellent way to clean the liver and kidneys as well as supply them with powerful nutrients. The following combination is packed with electrolytes and purifying properties.
Prep everything and add to the juicer extracting well. Transfer to a clean container and drink up! Enjoy!
And if you don’t have time to juice, grab some Organifi, which has incredible detoxification benefits in the form of superfoods, adaptogens and phytonutrients.
There is great value in learning about your body, the systems in your body and the individual organs that are working 24/7 to keep you functioning at optimum levels. When you carefully research and make the best choices for your body, it will take care of you for years to come!
If all the information in this post is overwhelming, DO NOT get discouraged! Take ONE thing from this post that you can start doing in your life and make all the efforts to do it. Real change doesn’t happen overnight. Changing to a healthy lifestyle is a journey where you take one step at a time towards a better life.
You can do this. And remember, we’re in this together. Always!
Drew Canole is a rockstar in the world of fitness, nutrition and mindset, with a huge heart for others and doing his part to transform the world, one person at a time.
As the founder and CEO of Fitlife.TV, he is committed to sharing educational, inspirational and entertaining videos and articles about health, fitness, healing and longevity. He is also a best selling author and the founder of Organifi, an organic, incredibly delicious greens powder, chock-full of superfoods to make juicing easy no matter your busy schedule.
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