You got it!  Your kidneys.  How often do you think about your kidneys? Since mine seem to be working as designed, I don’t think about them much other than their cool shape. Since it is National Kidney awareness month, here are some quick facts about kidneys:

The kidneys are two bean-shaped organs, each about the size of a fist. They are located just below the rib cage, one on each side of the spine. Every day, the two kidneys filter about 120 to 150 quarts of blood to produce about 1 to 2 quarts of urine, composed of wastes and extra fluid.

The kidneys are important because they keep the composition, or makeup, of the blood stable, which lets the body function. Your kidneys:

  • prevent the buildup of wastes and extra fluid in the body
  • keep levels of electrolytes stable, such as sodium, potassium, and phosphate
  • make hormones that help
    • regulate blood pressure
    • make red blood cells
    • bones stay strong

Interesting tidbits:

  • Kidney disease is the 9th leading cause of death in the country
  • More than 30 million Americans have kidney disease, and most don’t know it
  • There are over 95,000 people waiting for kidney transplants

I found the “most don’t know it” tidbit curious.  The National Kidney Foundation shares the following:

Kidney disease often has no symptoms, and it can go undetected until very advanced. But a simple urine test can tell you if you have kidney disease. Early detection and treatment can slow or prevent the progression of kidney disease.

What can you choose to keep your kidneys healthy? Lots!

  1. Make healthy food choices
  2. Get or stay active!
  3. Get or stay at a healthy weight
  4. Sleep 7 to 8 consecutive hours in each 24 hour period
  5. Stop smoking
  6. Limit alcohol intake
  7. Reduce your stress
  8. Be sure to manage:
    • Diabetes
    • Heart Disease
    • High Blood Pressure

Delicious Kidney Friendly Recipes, courtesy of the Northwest Kidney Centers:

Acorn Squash Baked with Pineapple

Anytime Energy Bars

Banana Apple Smoothie

Dijon Chicken

Mediterranean Roasted Red Pepper Soup

If you need guidance on making the choices that are right for you, SimplaFYI can help. Find your health & wellness coach in our vetted Community of Practitioners today!