Where are your Kidneys?
Most people are born with 2 kidneys; they are each about the size of an adult fist. The kidneys are protected by muscle, fat and your lower ribs.
What your kidneys do for your body?
The kidneys act as a filter which cleans our blood of wastes and keeps the essential elements that are required by the body. The kidneys produce enzymes and hormones which help the kidneys to: control blood pressure, keep your internal water balance in your body, produce red blood cells, maintain blood composition and PH levels and help to maintain healthy bones.
The kidneys filter out all the toxins in your body, they filter though about 150 litres of blood per day and they reabsorb about 99% of that. Out of this about 1 litre of urine is produced.
What is Chronic Kidney Disease?
There are 5 stages of Chronic Kidney disease which is determined by how well the kidneys are working and how much function is occurring. Chronic kidney disease is when the kidneys are no longer performing their full function . If the kidneys are not doing their job then the body is not getting rid of the waste and toxins and these can build up in your body and in turn make you sick.
Once you have chronic kidney disease it cannot be reversed, but treatment is available to stop the disease from getting worse. It is also recognised that diet, exercise and medication can reduce the progression of chronic kidney disease. Sometimes Chronic Kidney disease can be difficult to detect and this can mean that your kidney can lose their function without you even knowing it.
DID YOU KNOW: Indigenous Australians are 4 times more likely to die of kidney disease than that of non indigenous Australians.
Risk Factors for getting Kidney Disease
If you have diabetes , high blood pressure , if you are obese, over 60 years of age, have a family history of kidney disease, are a smoker are of Aboriginal or Torres Straight Island
origin, or if you are a binge drinker.
How to keep your kidneys healthy
Watch your alcohol consumption. Stay in a healthy weight range. Stay physically active by
doing at least 30 minutes of exercise per day. Stay away from smoking, these are toxins which make your kidneys work harder. Drink plenty of water and keep yourself hydrated. Keep your blood pressure at the right level. Stay away from soft drinks and keep your blood sugar at the right level.
Chronic kidney disease is treated throughout the 5 stages with different methods. This can include changes and improvements within diet, exercise and lifestyle changes. Other treatments also include medication. Dialysis and kidney transplants are used in the case which the disease has reached the higher stages
It is important that we look after our kidneys and keep our bodies healthy and in shape. If you have any concerns please see your doctor, nurse or health worker. It can be as simple as a urine or blood test to see how healthy your kidneys are.