About 10,000-15,000 patients receive kidney transplants in America alone. The National Kidney Foundation also notes that one in three Americans is at risk of needing a transplant from developing kidney disease.
One of the best ways to care for any organ is to know more about it. You need to know answers to questions like what are the primary functions of the kidneys and do you need your kidneys to survive?
Read our guide to find out all the essential functions of the kidneys and why they’re so critical to all aspects of your health.
What Are the Primary Functions of the Kidneys?
Most humans have two kidneys in the back of their abdomen on each side of their spine. Some people can survive with only one, which may leave you wondering why they’re necessary at all.
To understand why kidneys are important, you need to know all their essential functions.
Filtering and Distributing Blood
Kidneys are what filters blood throughout the body. They circulate up to 30 gallons every day, removing a gallon of waste and fluid.
The kidney’s filter is highly effective and essential to proper health.
The kidneys also make sure that blood moves through the body properly. Regulating fluid volume and osmolarity keeps blood from getting too diluted and maintains a healthy amount in all vessels.
Hormone and Mineral Production
The kidneys regulate a variety of critical ions like sodium, potassium, and calcium. They also produce erythropoietin, a red blood cell synthesis protein, and renin, which regulates blood pressure and maintains a proper salt and water balance. Both chemicals are important in maintaining plasma, calcium, and glucose levels.
Kidneys can help regulate PH levels. They make sure that the right balance is struck so that blood doesn’t get too acidic or alkaline.
All these essential regulatory functions help the body maintain homeostasis, i.e. the proper levels of everything it needs.
Urination and Toxin Removal
The kidney is an essential part of the urinary tract along with the ureters, bladder, and urethra.
As the kidneys filter out waste and toxins, they create urine as well. Once it’s finished passing through the urinary tract, the unnecessary chemicals no longer harm and/or clog up the body.
Kidneys remove toxins naturally, but there are ways to help them with this process. Try a kidney detox to keep this essential organ running at its best.
To fully understand what kidneys do, you need to know all their possible functions.
Other essential functions include red blood cell production and the creation of healthy bones. Kidneys can play a part in almost any bodily function that involves maintaining homeostasis.
These functions and more show why you do need your kidneys.
Why You Need Your Kidneys
Knowing what the primary functions of the kidneys are help you understand why they’re so important.
They’re a critical part of maintaining homeostasis throughout the body. By filtering blood, regulating PH levels, circulating minerals and ions, and removing toxins through urine, they help the body stay balanced.
Any kind of kidney failure can lead to serious diseases or intrusive treatment methods like dialysis. That’s why it’s best to work to protect them now.
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