Why Are Your Kidneys So Important?
Your kidneys are bean-shaped organs, each about the size of your fist. They are located near the middle of your back, just below the rib cage. Kidneys are sophisticated reprocessing machines in the body. Every day, your kidneys processes and re-processes your blood to sift out waste products and extra water. This is changed into urine, which flows to your bladder through internal tubes called ureters. Urine is stored in the bladder until you go to the bathroom.
The waste products in your blood come from different parts of the body and from the food you eat. Your body uses food for energy and self-repair. After your body absorbs what it needs from food and changes it to energy, some of the byproduct is sent to the kidneys to either recycle back to the body or excrete as urine. If your kidneys did not remove these by-products as urine, waste would accumulate and damage your body and ability to function. The urine that we excrete takes a few hours to produce.
In addition to removing wastes, your kidneys also are responsible for regulating blood pressure. Other important kidney functions are maintaining bone health and helping keep the body’s hemoglobin body within normal levels.
So, in summary, your kidneys are powerful chemical factories in your body that perform these functions:
- Remove waste products from the body
- Balance the body’s fluids
-Release hormones that maintain or elevate blood pressure, maintain bone health and control the production of red blood cells.