Learning About the Urinary System
The urinary systems consist of two kidneys, each having a ureter connecting it to the bladder. The bladder is then connected to the urethra and, which ultimately leads to opening out of the body. The function of the urinary system is to produce and remove a waste product called urine, and to regulate the amount, alkalinity or acidity, and consistency of body fluids.
Kidneys filter blood. Every minute, one fourth of the blood in the body enters the kidneys, which are composed of about 2 million microscopic filters called nephrons. The nephrons are responsible for absorbing nutrients and eliminating toxins and other waste material from the blood. In addition, the kidneys help regulate other bodily functions by secreting the hormones renin, erythropoietin, and prostaglandin. Renin helps control blood pressure, while erythropoietin helps stimulate the body to produce more red blood cells.
Prostaglandin is not limited to the kidneys. In other tissues and situations, it causes smooth muscles to contract or relax, is involved in as normal fluid collection in the body, is responsible for some types of fevers, and pain. It also is heavily involved in the process of inflammation. But in the kidneys, prostaglandin causes dilation of the veins and helps with the urine-making process. The bladder is a sack like organ located in the pelvis. It's function is to store urine until it is excreted. It is made up of three layers of involuntary muscles that provide you with the ability to expand and contract. When empty, the bladder shrivels up to the shape of a small prune and, but it swells and stretches as needed to hold urine. Most people's bladder's can hold about a pint of urine.Then, when the bladder is full, the walls expand and send impulses to the brain telling it to urinate.
Urine is 96% water. The other 4% includes a mix of urea, salt, sugar, proteins, fats, vitamins, and coloring from bile pigments. Its color is usually clear or yellow, though this depends upon the diet and health of the individual. Urine as a distinct ammonia-like smell that is primarily due to the nitrogenous waste it contains.
The factors in urinary health.
Kidneys are designed to keep blood clean. They spend every minute of the day filtering out impurities. However, like any intricate structure, they have limitations. Even so, modern society seems to dictate that they must deal with more and more abuse. Drinking water frequently during the day can alleviate some potential problems by helping the kidneys flush toxins from the body.
Healthy cells need the proper concentration of salts. That's why potassium and sodium are crucial to the body's fluid balance. More than half of the water in the body is located inside the cells. The rest is mixed with salt-rather like diluted seawater-that bathes the cells.
The kidneys are the major regulating mechanisms for maintaining proper sodium and potassium balance. They are designed to excrete extra potassium and save sodium. In times past, there was plenty of potassium in foods, but not as much sodium. Today, people eat more foods that contain sodium ( mainly processed foods with added sodium) and not as many fresh foods with natural potassium.
Unfortunately, even with a high sodium diet the kidneys still have sodium and excrete potassium. Obviously we can't change the ways our kidneys function, but we can change our diet. Since food processing lowers the potassium content of foods, we should eat plenty of fresh foods.
Herbal supplements, vitamins and minerals can also help provide the urinary system with the nutrients it needs to efficiently perform its delicate chemical balancing act.
It's probably an illusion that Americans are well nourished. We may be over fed, but not with substantial nutrients. Chances are that most Americans are not getting all the additional support they need to maintain good health from their diets alone.
Dietary surveys indicate that 30 - 50% of the total caloric intake of the typical American is made up of highly processed, adulterated a nutrient deficient foods. For example, white flour has been deprived of the 60% of its original calcium, 71% of phosphors, 75% of iron, 67% of copper, and 85% of manganese. The loss of vitamins is similar.
The National Research Council's Committee on Diet and Health has stated, "A comprehensive review... indicates that diet influences the risk of several major chronic diseases."
Studies show that health and longevity are increased by avoiding smoking, drinking moderate amounts of alcohol or none at all, controlling weight, reducing stress, exercising regularly and eating a well balanced diet.
Learn to eat Smart.
The first step to eating smart is making sure your diet includes sufficient amount of fiber and other essential nutrients, and restricting the amounts of fat and refined sugar and flour that you consume.
The American Cancer Society recognizes a relationship between certain types of cancer and the way people eat. Most people should eat as varied a diet as possible and become better acquainted with all kinds of fresh vegetables, fruits, fish, poultry, eggs, 100% grains, nuts and seeds.
The American Heart Association proposes that total fat intake should be less than 30% of total calories consumed. Saturated fat intake should be as low as possible and polyunsaturated fat should be less than 10%. Amounts of monounsaturated fat can be as high as desired as long as it doesn't increase total fat intake to more than 30% of daily calories.
Nature's sunshine provides products aimed at increasing the levels of General Nutrition for all systems in the body. Make sure that you're getting the nutrients you need.
Urinary System Herbs Include: