Your kidneys are pretty amazing little organs. Here are some little known facts that will help you understand and protect them:

  • You have two kidneys. Inside each is about one million tiny blood filters called nephrons. These help to eliminate toxins and excess fluids from your blood.
  • The human body contains approximately 1.2 to 1.5 gallons of blood, making up about 7% of your body mass. Your kidneys filter that blood around 400 times a day to keep you happy and healthy.
  • During the filtration process, your kidneys clean about 44 ounces of blood every minute. Depending on your fluid intake, that’s about the same amount of urine your kidneys will filter out of your blood on a daily basis.
  • In the event that a person experiences complete kidney failure and needs a transplant, the disabled kidney will not be extracted and will be left in place. The transplanted kidney would instead be situated within your pelvis.
  • In the event that you should experience a drop in blood pressure, your kidneys can signal your blood vessels to shrink to keep you from experiencing dizziness.
  • Similarly, if your kidneys detect a drop in your blood oxygen level, they will boost the creation of new red blood cells through the release of the hormone erythropoietin.
  • Your urine is yellow due to a compound called bilirubin, which is a product created by your kidneys when naturally eliminating aged red blood cells that contain hemoglobin.
  • Your kidneys are so efficient you only need one to keep your body fluids regulated and your bloodstream clear of toxins.

Even though you only need one kidney to continue normal body functions, it’s best to keep the ones you have in good working order. Since most kidney transplants come from family members, you never know when you may be called upon to help a loved one. So always take good care of yourself and your kidneys.