March| National Kidney Month

Get to Know your Hardworking Kidneys

By Elder Yvonne McFarlane

There are two kidneys in the body, they are bean-shaped organs,each about the size of a fist. They are located just below the rib cage, one on each side of the spine. Each day, the two kidneys filter about 120 to 150 quarts of blood to produce about 1 to 2 quarts of urine.

The kidneys are powerful organs that perform the following functions:

● remove waste products from the body

● balance the body’s fluids

● release hormones that regulate blood pressure

● promotes strong healthy bones

● control the production of red blood cells

Problems Kidney Disease can Cause:

● nerve damage

● weak bones

● stroke

● kidney failure

● cardiovascular disease

● heart attack

Symptoms / Signs of Kidney Disease may Include:

● nausea

● vomiting

● loss of appetite

● fatigue and weakness

● sleep problems

● swelling of feet,ankles, face and hands

● difficult/painful urination

Risk Factors:

● hypertension

● family history

● age 60+

● ethnicity( several studies performed in the usa have confirmed an increased risk in african americans compared with caucasians)

Please see your doctor if you are experiencing any symptoms, or have health concerns.