Back pain is not a naïve problem – it can be often be a sign of something more serious. The National Kidney Foundation says that more than 26 million Americans are suffering from kidney disease at the moment, while 1 in every 3 Americans are at risk of developing it. Kidney disease is killing more people in the USA than breast or prostate cancer, which clearly indicates how serious the disease is.
The main risk factors of the disease are high blood pressure, diabetes, family history of kidney failure and age over 60. Kidney stones, smoking, obesity and cardiovascular diseases can also be the culprit.
Why are kidneys important?
The kidneys are very important for our overall health as they filter toxins from the blood and get rid of excess fluid in the body. They also regulate our electrolyte levels, the hormonal levels, the blood pressure and have an important role in the production of new red blood cells. They are so efficient that you can live your life normally without one.
The main signs of kidney failure are foamy, pink, or dark urine, increased frequency of urination, fatigue and weakness, painful urination, puffy eyes and increased thirst. Edema is one the most dangerous side-effects of damaged kidneys. The condition can cause swelling in the face, hands, abdomen or feet, and occurs when the kidneys can’t remove excess fluids from the body. Edema often leads to heart and kidney disease.
14 kidney-boosting foods
Here are some foods which can significantly improve your kidney health:
Cranberries are a common urinary tract infection remedy. Cranberry juice prevents these infections by making the urine more acidic. It will even prevent kidney stones and keep bacteria from sticking to the walls of the bladder.
Grapes can be consumed as a preventative measure against kidney disease thanks to their rich antioxidant content. Eat 15 grapes every day to keep your blood alkaline and keep your kidneys functioning properly.
Apples contain just the right amount of potassium to keep the heart healthy. They can be safely consumed even if you’re on dialysis.
Lemons are rich in citric acid which can dissolve and prevent kidney stones. The acid will break up stones that are already formed and prevent small stones from getting bigger by preventing materials from attaching to them.
Turmeric can relieve the inflammation in overworked kidneys and prevent blood clots by preventing clumping of blood platelets. The antioxidants in the spice will also protect your liver from damage.
Ginger has warming properties which will stimulate blood flow besides cleaning your blood of toxins. The plant will also reduce your back pain, and is considered a powerful digestive tonic that can relieve vomiting, nausea and upset stomach.
Dandelion is great for relieving PMS and edema. It can also relieve digestive problems – just consume some ginger tea to boost your bile flow.
This green herb and spice can treat urinary tract infections and prevent kidney stones. Drink parsley tea every day to relieve edema and constipation.
- Marshmallow root
Marshmallow root is a powerful diuretic which will increase the flow of your urine, and will eliminate toxins in your colon, kidneys and liver.
- Gravel root
This pink-flowered plant can treat urinary tract infections and kidney problems and relieve the symptoms of kidney damage.
Nettle tea is often recommended to patients suffering from prostate problems which can overwork the kidneys. It can treat early symptoms of enlarged prostate and is often used as a natural remedy against urinary tract infections, hay fever, joint pain, spasms, tendonitis and insect bites.
- Celery seeds
Celery seeds are a diuretic, anti-inflammatory and anti-stress agent that will keep your kidneys disease free.
Yarrow has incredible medicinal properties – it can fight kidney inflammation and pain, while its hemostatic abilities can prevent blood in the urine.
- Hydrangea root
This root is toxic to pets, but very beneficial for humans. It can relieve inflammation and infections in the bladder, kidneys and urethra, while preventing kidney stones and treating the symptoms of enlarged prostate.
Kidney cleansing juice
- 1 tablespoon of dry marshmallow root
- 1 tablespoon of dry gravel root
- 1 tablespoon of dry hydrangea root
- 1 quart of juice
Crush all the ingredients with a mortar and pestle, then mix 2 and a half ounces of the herbs into the apple juice and put the mixture in a glass jar. Next, cook the mixture until it boils, then pour it in a cup and drink the tea a couple of times a day for 3 days. Besides this tea, you can add the herbs into warm lemon water for the same effect.
And, while these foods and tips will keep your kidneys healthy, your lifestyle is most important for proper kidney health. It’s very important to drink plenty of water in order to stay hydrated and prevent kidney stones, and you should also avoid alcohol abuse and smoking.