Contrary to mainstream belief, supplements can’t take the place of a healthy diet. In actuality, it is food that provides all the natural detox support for your kidneys with antioxidants, astringency, regeneration and energy.
With the following list of foods for healthy bladder and kidneys, you will strengthen the function of these vital organs that are known to be the source of energy balance in the body system and which are responsible for aging and vitality.
Their function is strongly correlated with longevity! If we keep them functioning properly and conserve the energy that is usually placed daily on our organ function, digestive system and detoxification pathways, we can conserve the energy the body requires to heal (to keep us disease-free) and help us live until ripe, old age.
Indeed, through a proper diet and fasting, we can ensure the body generates more energy than it loses in its metabolic, digestive, and detoxification activities. As long as we utilize less energy than we bring in so that cells have an adequate supply of food to function and don’t have to compensate by stealing energy from other organs and tissues to function, we can ensure optimal health for life. That is the true secret of natural law and biological longevity!
How Your Kidneys and Bladder Function
The two bean-shaped organs do more than filter toxins out of the body’s sewage system – the lymphatic system. When the liver filters the blood, the water-soluble toxins from the blood are then purged into the lymphatic system to be filtered out by the kidneys through the urine.
The kidneys also help balance fluids and minerals in the body, work with the adrenal glands to support the stress response, regulate the salt, potassium and acid content and release hormones like erythropoietin (a hormone made by kidney cells that stimulate the production of red blood cells) and renin (which regulates blood pressure).
Narrowed or diseased kidney arteries can cause high blood pressure and toxin stagnation in the body. And when the kidneys can’t filter out acids, toxins, chemicals, and proteins properly, the waste gets stored in the soft tissues and fat, causing degeneration and chronic inflammation that is at the root of the majority of modern diseases.
The bladder holds the kidneys’ waste and flushes it out of the body. When the bladder is weak, urine leaks out involuntarily. This can be due to a constipating diet, smoking, alcohol, a bladder infection, or aging. To keep the bladder healthy, the best you can do is to consume hydrating foods that strengthen the bladder muscles.
And to offset your chances of getting a bladder infection – which is mostly caused by E. coli bacteria – wipe your waste in the forward to back motion, so that feces don’t come into contact with the urethra. Likewise, tampons and frequent sexual activity can cause bladder infections.
You can be more susceptible to bladder infections if you frequently consume processed sugar, are not hydrated enough, and hold in your urine for too long.
Kidneys in Traditional Chinese Herbal Medicine
The ancient Chinese medical tradition views the kidneys as the seat of our inherited physical/energetic constitution and the source of yin and yang energy production (the source of Qi). They are associated with our will, manifestation, self-esteem, and the ability to meet the demands of the world in a healthy and balanced way.
Since all the organs are also associated with emotions, low-frequency emotions and stress can damage the organs profoundly. Worry, fear, anxiety, insecurity and low self-esteem are symptoms of weak kidneys and adrenal glands, and these same emotions also weaken the kidneys further (a catch 22!).
On the other hand, balanced living, cultivating self-love and feeling safe, secure, and worthy are all states of being that help heal and nourish the kidneys.
Indeed, when the kidneys and liver function well, we feel energetic and optimistic about life and our ability to manifest our dreams into reality. We feel less worried, have greater self-esteem, have the ability to exert our will and have more stamina to face the challenges in our lives.
Overall, in Traditional Chinese Medicine, the kidneys are the most important organ in the body, governing a person’s life force, energy, and spirit. The kidneys are said to benefit from bitter and black foods (since the kidneys govern the winter season that is associated with the color black), which stimulate organ activity and balance out its fluid retention. The following is a truly informative overview of kidney function and nurturance from the Traditional Chinese Medical perspective:
What to Avoid If You Have Bladder and Kidney Problems
The kidneys are a part of the elimination organ system and work alongside the colon and skin to eliminate toxic waste from the body. Therefore, when the kidneys are not working properly, our liver, colon, and skin take the brunt of the work and become weaker themselves. If one team member suffers, the whole team feels the effects.
When the kidneys aren’t healthy, we can experience many physical symptoms that may not be chronic and debilitating but that can significantly decrease our quality of life. We can feel extremely lazy and depressed, have joint pain, gain weight easily, become constipated, suffer from dry, cracked skin and nails, lose hair, develop cellulite or endocrine system disruption, which gives rise to thyroid and adrenal issues, for example.
Of course, pollutants and chemicals in our environment are also a challenge to the health of our kidneys. But there are also many foods that can damage bladder and kidney function profoundly! A diet devoid of electrolytes and minerals is a recipe for kidney malfunction, since the kidneys need a proper ratio of minerals to work properly.
Essentially, there are two food groups that I recommend be removed from the diet if you suspect your kidneys are weak and diseased. In fact, eliminating all inflammatory foods will work wonders in reversing the health symptoms related to systemic weakness and chronic disease. And further supplementation with healthy foods that heal will restore and rebuild bodily tissues and function.
To protect your kidneys, I wholeheartedly recommend avoiding all high-protein foods (especially meat) as well as dairy products, particularly if you take any medications, suffer from high blood pressure or chronic kidney disease, or have had kidney stones. Likewise, limit or better yet avoid all packaged foods with preservatives and additives as well as processed sugar.
How The Kidneys Work with the Lymphatic System to Remove Waste From the Body
The kidneys are responsible for removing water-soluble waste from the body’s lymphatic system, or its sewage system. When the kidneys work harder and are not removing enough liquid waste from the lymphatic system, a backup of toxic sewage develops in soft tissues. The muscles and fat stores become swollen with fluid and this can be felt as edema or water retention.
As toxins start to fester the surrounding tissues, they harden into crystals that are deposited throughout the body. These deposits are called ‘kidney stones’ or ‘urinary tract stones’, and can be quite painful.
One way to ensure that these deposits are removed from the body quickly is by movement and gentle exercise, since the body’s sewer system, or the lymphatic system, requires proper movement (light exercise and circulation) to circulate and move waste to the kidneys.
When the sewage system becomes stagnant due to a sedentary lifestyle, waste cannot be evacuated and toxic waste accumulates in tissues. The lymph system does not have a natural pump like the blood has the heart, meaning that it works optimally when we move, eat astringent foods that hydrate, and breathe deeply and properly.
Kidneys are the body’s filtration system – and when they start failing, it’s a sign that a healthier approach to life is needed and stress, exertion, toxin/chemical exposure, fear/worry and the consumption of a processed diet must be minimized greatly.
If the kidneys are healthy, the bladder will also function optimally. But even if the bladder does get weaker due to lifestyle and age, nutrition will keep it strong enough not to succumb to health problems!
Common Symptoms of Diseased Kidneys
As the kidneys begin to lose their filtering capacity, some common signs start emerging:
-Fatigue and weakness/tiredness, especially after meals
-Frequent urination, especially at night
-Depression (due to reduced oxygenation in the tissues)
-Urine changes (bloody, red, or other colors)
-Bad breath (metallic taste), nausea & vomiting, and indigestion
-Sexual problems (low libido)
-Headaches and high blood pressure
-Swelling and puffiness in the face (especially eyes), feet and lower legs
-Sensitivity to cold or heat
-Skin inflammation such as eczema, rashes, dermatitis, and psoriasis
-Low tolerance to stress
-High degree of anxiety and worry
-Lower back pain
-Menstrual, uterine, and fertility problems
Top 11 Foods for Healthy Bladder and Kidneys
Here are my favorite 11 foods for healthy kidneys! Personally, they have helped me reverse inflammation and heal severe eczema (which is caused by lack of proper kidney filtration of toxic built-up), and I truly owe them my health. May they do the same for you and provide you with the hydrating chemistry you need to detoxify, heal and regenerate your body for optimal function!
The astringency of these raw foods for healthy kidneys provides a toning action on body tissue, contracting the muscles, blood vessels, and skin.
An alkaline diet has a hydrating effect on your system, which stimulates the kidneys and other elimination organs to become more active; this natural process of “burning up” waste and dead cellular debris is called autolysis.
The astringent foods below are considered very healing to the kidneys, liver, skin, and liver because they support these detoxification and elimination organs by helping to eliminate waste through the bowels, lymphatic system/kidneys, and the skin.
In Traditional Chinese Medicine, it is said that these foods can halt an internal “drought” or crisis, which happens when the body is unable to cope with certain types of toxins and the crisis point has been reached.
Overall, the ideal foods for healthy kidneys should include mostly fruits and vegetables that are organic and locally grown whenever possible! This is the best way to get a balanced mineral intake. When a diet is nutritionally devoid and consists mostly of packaged foods, high levels of potassium, phosphorus, and sodium can accumulate in the kidneys, causing renal weakness and degeneration.
Instead, go for fresh fruits and dark-colored (such as purple!) whole foods that will provide and assimilate natural minerals in your body, helping to hydrate, electrify, and alkalize all cells. Your kidneys need natural electrolytes that come from raw, whole foods to work properly and detoxify acidic waste efficiently. Likewise, this “electricity”, or energy, that is produced by the assimilation of these natural minerals is key to longevity, since it is essential for our body’s self-healing capacity.
This delicious summer fruit is nature’s strongest detoxification agent and is known to be a cleansing and healing tonic for the kidneys. Red grapes contain powerful antioxidants, including resveratrol, which has been shown to reverse advanced kidney disease, among other incredible health benefits.
Watermelon juice has some very unique benefits for the kidneys. One study showed a significant decrease in protein leakage into urine after participants drank watermelon juice.
The nutrients responsible for such detoxifying effects include antioxidants called carotenoids, which help fight inflammation. Watermelon is also a good source of magnesium and potassium, which are necessary for proper kidney function.
Rich in water, this low-calorie vegetable is full of potassium, magnesium, sodium, and phosphorus that naturally electrify and cleanse the kidneys. Celery also helps regulate blood pressure and works wonders to alkalize the intracellular fluid quickly.
This annual plant is a great source of the antioxidants vitamin A and C that fight free radicals in the body; it also acts as a mild diuretic, soothes inflammation, cleanses the blood vessels and kidney. Asparagus also helps heal urinary tract infections and helps the body clear up constipation.
The beetroot contains adenosine, a compound that increases the flow of blood and urine, helping rid the body of toxins. These deep red roots are packed with antioxidants and flavonoids that protect the blood vessels from oxidative stress, while boosting the antioxidant enzymes that clear toxins from the kidneys. Compared to apples, beets are stronger at removing toxins, as they contain more pectin.
This herb is a cleanser and tonic for many of the body’s tissues and organs and supports the kidneys naturally with its diuretic effects by flushing out excess toxic buildup. It is rich in vitamin K, which helps prevent calcium build-up in blood vessels and arteries, protecting the heart, lungs, and other organs from damage caused by hyperacidity or hardening of the arteries.
This conventional salad staple provides an excellent source of sulfur and regulates blood pressure and fluids in your body- both are essential for healthy kidneys. They also contain chromium, which helps control blood sugar in diabetics. Likewise, red onions are used as expectorants and are known to provide urinary support for tract infections.
This dark green leafy vegetable is a good source of flavonoids that prevent oxidative damage caused by toxins and free radicals. Although watercress is a diuretic and is wonderful for bladder health, it may be too detoxifying to consume during a bladder infection. Watercress is also a kidney tonic and is rich in essential minerals such as calcium, potassium, iron, and magnesium.
Also known as fresh coriander or Chinese parsley, the seeds, leaves, and roots of this plant expel heavy metals, especially mercury from the kidneys. Our bodies were never designed to process these dangerous substances! They cause an acidic environment in your system, which can lead to chronic inflammation that manifests itself as diseases like cancer, diabetes or heart disease. Cilantro supports the urinary tract and is one of the most beneficial foods for bladder health.
Blueberries are one of the best foods for kidney health. They contain anthocyanins, antioxidants that protect your kidneys against inflammation and cell damage caused by free radicals. Blueberries have also been shown to reduce elevated creatinine levels in the blood, which is often an early indication of kidney problems. They also prevent bladder dysfunction and are powerful urinary tract infection healers.
The monounsaturated oleic acid in this liquid gold protects against oxidative damage to the kidneys and soothes an overactive bladder. It also helps lower blood sugar and bad cholesterol (LDL), while increasing good cholesterol (HDL). To ensure you get the best health benefits of olive oil, always buy organic and consume it in its raw form (not heated).
For detoxification of waste and powerful cleansing of the kidneys in particular, organic watermelon and red grapes are among my favorite anti-inflammatory foods!
These delicious fruits are some of the most detoxifying foods found in nature and flush out acidity that is found deeply embedded within tissues to revitalize their function. They likewise nourish cells and tissues with an electrolyte mineral profile that generates electricity and fuels cells with vital energy.
4 Drinks That Support Bladder and Kidney Function
Liquids are key in cleaning the body of stagnation and acidic waste and can quickly and efficiently cool down inflammation and re-hydrate the body. Whenever you experience pain, aching, low energy, chronic tiredness, and lack of motivation, your body may be experiencing dehydration and inflammation.
The best way you can feel better rapidly is to flush out waste through the lymphatic system that utilizes the kidneys as an elimination organ of water-soluble acids and toxic waste.
Food nutrition builds up the bladder and the kidneys over time, but liquids are just as powerful in their cleaning and healing capacity and should be a part of a powerful kidney revitalization protocol. The following liquids are known to help aid the elimination organs and facilitate detoxification throughout the body.
1) Lemon Water – this tonic has the power to dissolve uric acid and other acids that have accumulated in your body. Lemon is highly astringent and cleansing and is ideal for detoxification. The lemon water also regulates blood pressure and improves digestion.
2) Coconut Water – this fruity nectar is a natural isotonic beverage that can help the body maintain water balance and hydration. Its electrolytes help to speed up recovery after exercise. It is also rich in potassium (even more than a banana), which helps the kidneys eliminate toxins.
3) Hot, Herbal Teas – herbal teas are diuretics and have been used for many years to cure kidney-related diseases and other ailments. Make sure you drink them hot, since according to the Ayurvedic tradition, cold water is more detrimental for kidney and bladder function.
In fact, hot liquid is ideal for killing pathogens and bad bacteria and aids in detoxification. Herbs are also known to heal and strengthen tissues and are an essential part of every detoxification and healing protocol.
4) Cold Pressed Organic Juices – fresh, homemade juices contain essential minerals and vitamins that support bladder and kidney health. They also provide alkaline chemistry to the cells and help move the lymphatic sewage waste from cells and tissues to the kidneys and bladder for elimination. Watermelon, lemon, red grapes, beets, cucumber, and parsley are especially beneficial for treating bladder and kidney disease.
Never underestimate the power of the body to self-heal and regenerate! But, it cannot do so alone. The chemistry we consume in the form of foods, lifestyle (energy), thoughts and emotions is key to preserving the functional integrity of tissues, glands, and metabolic processes so that all can work optimally as a team.
The kidneys are one of the most important organs in the body that are known to be the source of bodily electricity and toxic waste elimination. They require electrolytes, astringency and alkaline chemistry for optimal health and vitality. Inevitably, their health is correlated with one’s lifespan and the genetic bodily constitution we pass on to our offspring.
In a nutshell, the kidneys filter, protect and balance and the bladder helps the kidneys purge acidic water-soluble waste from the body. In many ancient traditions, kidneys are viewed as the source of our life force and their condition is predicated on how we age and how long we live.
By detoxifying the body with astringent fruits and building up tissue with vegetables and herbs, you will not only reverse kidney and bladder problems but will help regenerate other parts of the body. In fact, an alkaline, raw vegan diet that consists of fruits, vegetables, and herbs heals many health issues simultaneously!
If you are suffering from kidney and bladder weakness and need to learn about ways to heal your body naturally through detoxification, my new e-book How to Detox Your Body Naturally and Safely will teach you all you need to know about your body, how to cleanse it naturally, and the importance of detoxification in reversing all disease.
May it help you get the answers you seek and provide you with the tools you need to get well!