Back pain can sometimes indicate a much serious health problem.
The National Kidney Foundation reports that over 26 million people in U.S. suffer from kidney disease, and at this moment, 1 of 3 adults are at risk for developing this disease. In America, kidney disease kills more people than prostate and breast cancer.
Some of the main risk factors for this disease are family history of kidney failure, high blood pressure, diabetes, and being older than 60. Additional risk factors are smoking, kidney stones, cardiovascular disease, and obesity.
The Importance of Kidneys
Kidneys perform multiple functions in our organism: clearing extra fluid from the body, filtering the blood from toxins, regulating the hormone levels, managing electrolyte levels, keeping the bones strong, and producing new red blood cells. You can now see why kidneys are one of the vital organs in our body.
Here are the first symptoms of kidney failure:
- Weakness, fatigue;
- Foamy urine;
- Painful, and difficult urination;
- Dark, pink urine (blood in urine);
- Puffy eyes;
- Increased need to urinate (especially at night);
- Increased thirst.
Edema, or water retention, is one of the most dangerous side effects of unhealthy kidneys. This condition is characterized by swollen hands, face, ankles, abdomen, and feet. It happens as a result of inability of kidneys to expel enough salt or fluid from the body. This can cause diseases of the liver, heart, and other important organs.
14 Foods that Improve the Function of Kidneys
Some plants included in the following list might interfere with prescription medication, and some are unsafe for pregnant women. Consult naturopath or doctor before use.
This fruit is often used for preventing UTIs (urinary tract infections), which can affect kidneys and bladder if not properly treated. Cranberry juice makes urine more acidic, thus preventing UTIs, as well as formation of kidney stones. It also doesn’t allow bacteria stick to the bladder’s walls and tissues inside the kidneys.
Another preventive measure against kidney disease is grape seed and skins. The abundance of antioxidants they contain protect kidneys from toxins and free radical damage. Consume 15 grapes daily to keep your blood alkaline, and maintain the proper function of your kidneys.
An apple a day keeps the doctor away. The amount of potassium it contains protects the heart, at the same time being low enough to fit people with kidney problems and dialysis patients.
Citric acid found in citrus fruits dissolves and protects from some types of kidney stones. It breaks kidney stones, and coat the smaller ones to prevent materials from sticking unto them, thus preventing them become bigger.
This powerful plant reduces inflammation in overworked and diseases kidneys. It also prevents platelets from clumping together, thus preventing formation of blood clots. The antioxidants it contains protect liver and kidneys from damage.
This little root promotes blood flow and purifies the blood from toxins. Moreover, ginger helps heal one of the earliest signs of kidney problems, which is back pain. It is popularly known as a digestive tonic which relieves nausea, vomiting, and upset stomach. Ginger tea helps dissolve kidney stones.
The root from this plant has diuretic properties which relieve some symptoms of PMS and edema. Dandelion root increases the flow of bile, and is also used in the treatment of digestive disturbances. Native Americans used to prepare a tea from dandelion root to treat kidney disease.
Consume parsley on a daily basis to treat kidney stones and UTIs. Boil it in water and drink it as a tea to ease constipation and edema.
9. Marshmallow Root
Marshmallow root is a diuretic that increases the flow and secretion of urine. Though not sweet as the popular marshmallow treat, the root can help the elimination of toxins in the liver, colon, and kidneys to promote healing and cleansing of the body.
10. Gravel Root
Gravel root treats various urinary tract issues like kidney or urinary stones, urethra, bladder, painful urination, and kidney infections.
This herb is extremely beneficial for prostate sufferers, a condition that can put extra strain on the kidneys. It can treat the signs of enlarged prostate in early stages, including incomplete emptying of the bladder, reduced urinary flow, constant urge to urinate, and post urination dripping.
Stinging nettle is also used for treating hay fever, UTIs, and when topically applied it treats sprain and strains, joint pain, insect bites, and tendonitis.
12. Celery Seeds
These seeds have diuretic, anti-stress and anti-inflammatory properties which support the function of the kidneys. They also heal spleen and liver disorders.
Yarrow has incredible healing properties. It fights pain and inflammation of the kidneys, and stops bleeding and prevent blood in urine thanks to its hemostatic abilities.
14. Hydrangea Root
Though toxic to pets, hydrangea root is beneficial for humans. It treats UTIs like infections of the prostate, urethra, and bladder, kidney stones; and enlarged prostate.
Kidney Cleansing Juice
- Dried Hydrangea Root – 1 tablespoon,
- Dried Gravel Root – 1 tablespoon,
- Dried Marshmallow Root – 1 tablespoon,
- 1 quart of grape, apple, melon or cranberry juice.
Crush all ingredients in a fine powder using a mortar and pestle. Add 2 ½ oz. of the crushed herbs into the juice, and put the remainder in a glass jar with a lid and keep it in a dry and cool place. Boil the herb-juice mixture, and remove from heat. Drink several times a day for a period of 3 days. The herb mixture can be as well combined with warm lemon water.
Besides the listed foods, you need to lead a healthy lifestyle in order to keep your organs healthy. It’s important to drink enough water to keep your body well hydrated, and prevent kidney stones. It’s also recommended to restrict your salt intake, to drink responsibly, and keep your blood sugar and blood pressure stable.