March is National Kidney Month. Since all of us have kidneys there are a few things you should know. There are several things that you can do to help keep them healthy. There are more than 30 million Americans that already have kidney disease. On average, 1 in 3 individuals are at risk for kidney disease due to lifestyle, diabetes, high blood pressure or family history of kidney disease.

The kidneys are fist size and ironically the shape of kidney beans. They are located within both sides of your lower back. Kidney Disease is the gradual loss of kidney function. Your kidneys filter wastes and excess fluids from your blood, which are then excreted in your urine. When chronic kidney disease reaches an advanced stage, dangerous levels of fluid, electrolytes and wastes can build up in your body. Kidney disease effects every part of your body.

    • Filter waste out of 200 liters of blood every day
    • Regulation of the body’s salt, potassium and acid content
    • Removing of drugs from the body
    • Balancing the body’s fluids
    • Regulating blood pressure
    • Producing an active form of vitamin D that promotes strong, healthy bones
    • Controlling the production of red blood cells

Treatment for chronic kidney disease focuses on slowing the progression of the kidney damage, usually by controlling the underlying cause. Chronic kidney disease can progress to end-stage kidney failure, which is fatal without artificial filtering (dialysis) or a kidney transplant.