Before We Start: Defining Some Basic Kidney Terms
Your kidneys are truly amazing. A healthy set of kidneys filters about ½ cup of blood every minute! They remove excess water and wastes from the blood .
Kidney infections occur when bacteria from the gut travel through the bladder and up to the kidneys . These are usually treated with antibiotics, and if you talk to your doctor, you may be able to add herbs to your treatment regimen to help ease pain and other symptoms.
Kidney stones are made up of crystal-forming substances, such as uric acid, calcium, oxalate, or cysteine. High levels of these in the urine and too little fluid to dilute them can cause stones . Drinking more fluids, changing the diet, and sometimes medication are used as preventative approaches .
Kidney disease or failure involves the loss of kidney function. Some causes include:
- Obstructions .
Now, lets find out how your favorite beverages might play into all this.
Chamomile Tea And Kidneys
Like rooibos, chamomile tea is caffeine free and low in tannins and oxalates .
However, chamomile may have more than just a neutral effect on kidneys. In an animal study, animals with nephrotoxicity were administered chamomile and it was found to improve kidney function .
Chamomile also reduces kidney dysfunction as a result of high fat diets. Long story short, theres pretty good evidence that chamomile is good for kidneys ! That is a cup of good news.
To learn more about chamomile and its benefits, read our chamomile spotlight post!
Choosing Tea For Kidney Health
So, is there a best tea for kidney disease? Some herbal teas can help target or prevent specific kidney-related problems, but it’s important to ask your doctor before drinking them regularly, especially if you have serious kidney issues. Many of the studies related to potential “kidney cleanses” have not been undertaken in large-sample, human trials.
A September 2016 study published in the Asian Journal of Urology found that Blumea balsamifera, or sambong, decreased the size of laboratory-grown calcium crystals, which are formed from urine minerals. The study used a commercially-available tea. Sambong may also prevent the formation of these crystals. If too many larger crystals stick together, they can form painful stones. Sanbong’s crystal-decreasing action potentially lowers the risk of kidney stones. Sambong is derived from a tropical shrub.
One type of hydrangea shrub, Hydrangea paniculata, features cone-shaped flowers. It also boasts medicinal properties. Research published in the December 2017 issue of Frontiers of Pharmacology focused on the high presence of the beneficial compounds in hydrangea that are known as coumarins. Coumarins have antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties. According to animal studies, ingesting hydrangea can have protective qualities, at least in the case of kidney injury. Hydrangea paniculata is available in “kidney cleanse” blends. Whether it’s the best tea for kidney disease is, of course, a question your doctor can help you solve.
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General Recommendations When Choosing Herbal Tea
Its important to know that herbal teas are not regulated for dose, content, or purity. Therefore, when selecting an herbal tea, we recommend looking for a high-quality product that gives clear information about the quality of the ingredients on the label and their brand website.
Be aware that most of the time, adverse reactions to herbal teas occur with excessive use. Therefore, use moderation with any herbal tea.
*Licorice contains glycyrrhizin, a biologically active component that, when metabolized can lead to hypertension and hypokalemia .
When looking at products that contain licorice, be sure to look for the de-glycyrrhizinated form of licorice .
DGL is a safe form of licorice that will not cause any change to blood pressure or potassium levels and is used to treat various conditions in functional medicine.
Is Hibiscus Tea Good For Kidney Stones
Hibiscus Tea is a Herbal Tea from the Hibiscus sabdariffa plant. When brewed, it boasts a uniquely tart flavour considered somewhat similar to cranberries or pomegranates. With its abundance of vitamins, minerals and other antioxidants, its popularity has increased dramatically in recent years due to its benefits. Could one such benefit be Hibiscus Tea Bags effect on the kidneys?
One preliminary animal-based study found that it prevented calcium oxalate crystals from turning into kidney stones. Its worth noting, too, that its well-documented ability to lower blood pressure could, in turn, have a positive influence on kidney health. Research indicates that three cups a day could make a small yet significant difference.
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Top 5 Healthy Drinks For People With Kidney Disease
Many of us love reaching for a refreshing, ice cold drink on a hot summer day, or cozying up with a warm beverage during the dead of winter. But did you know that the drinks you choose to quench your thirst can have a tremendous impact on your kidney health?
As a nephrologist and Kidney Kitchen® contributor, drink-related questions are some of the most common questions I get. Whether you need to watch out for certain nutrients or have fluid restrictions that you need to stick to, there are ways to enjoy healthy drinks for your kidneys. Remember: each person with kidney disease should stick to the food and fluid plan you discussed with your doctor and dietitian, as it addresses your specific kidney function, fluid needs and electrolyte imbalances . Here are five of my favorite drinks that are generally healthy for people with kidney disease:
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The Amount Of Coffee You Drink
First thing to consider is the nutritional content of coffee. An 8 oz. cup of black coffee has 116 mg of potassium3. This is considered a low potassium food. However, many people drink more than one cup of coffee each day. Three to four cups of coffee a day is considered high in potassium and could raise your potassium levels. Adding creamers or milk can further raise your coffees potassium content. Drinking less than three cups of coffee/day is generally considered safe. Phosphorus, sodium, calories, carbohydrates and protein are minimal in black coffee and not of nutritional consideration.
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Benefits Of Drinking Tea
Drinking tea comes with significant benefits! Lets review a few of the main reasons why tea can promote kidney health.
The amount of fluid recommended for each person is different because each person is unique. In addition, a variety of factors impact fluid needs, including:
- Activity level
- Body size
Hydration can impact kidney function and the ability to remove waste from the body. However, if you have late-stage kidney disease or certain heart conditions, too much fluid can be a problem. Always talk with your Physician and Dietitian about your daily fluid goals.
Of course, tea is only calorie-free and sugar-free when there is nothing added. Adding sweetener or cream will add calories and sugar. For some people, adding a bit of milk to black tea can help prevent the formation of kidney stones. More on this later!
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Benefits Of Turmeric Tea
It has a powerful anti-inflammatory property that helps to stop inflammation associated with Chronic Kidney diseases. also stops leaky guts associated with chronic inflammation. It also lowers the blood pressure which is also the main cause of Kidney failure.
How to make Turmeric Tea
To make turmeric tea add one teaspoon of turmeric powder to hot boiling water. Also, add a pinch of black pepper and drops of lemon juice to enhance the taste.
High Caffeine And Kidneys: Lets Explore Some Popular Drinks
Unfortunately, the effect of caffeine on the kidneys isnt great. Caffeine consumption is a risk factor for kidney disease, and can cause scarring of the glomeruli that is, the vessels in the kidneys that filter blood .
Caffeine may also lead to kidney stones, and it increases strain on the kidneys . However, some caffeinated beverages, like coffee, may be safe in small amounts due to certain plant constituents .
One review found that the data is inconclusive regarding caffeine and kidney stone risk however, the researchers pointed out that coffee and decaffeinated coffee,but not other caffeinated beverages, actually had a protective effect on the kidneys .
The bottom line, though, is that you probably shouldnt overdo it when it comes to caffeine. Lets look at some classically high caffeine drinks: black tea and coffee:
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Before You Try A Kidney Cleanse
Kidneys aren’t the most glamorous organs in the body, but don’t let them fool you. These bean-shaped organs perform some powerhouse functions every day.
Located under the rib cage in your lower back, your kidneys clear waste from your body. This is no small task: Every day, your kidneys remove about 2 quarts of excess water and waste products and process about 200 quarts of blood to do it.
Kidneys also release three important hormones: erythropoietin , renin , and calcitriol . Calcitriol also helps maintain calcium for bones and chemical balance in the body.
But do your kidneys need help to function at their best? That’s the basic premise of a kidney cleanse.
This article will explain what a kidney cleanse is and what it purports to do. “Purports” is the key word, because no scientific evidence exists to support the idea that eating certain foods and taking specific vitamins improves kidney health. Instead, you may wish to take other sensible steps before or even in place of a cleanse.
What Is A Kidney Cleansing Tea
Your kidneys are located beneath the rib cage in your lower back. Their primary function is to clear the so-called undesirables from the body, including the extraction of about two quarts of excess water and other waste products. This process requires approximately 200 quarts of blood. Additionally, the kidneys release three essential hormones: Erythropoietin, Renin and Calcitriol.
Erythropoietin stimulates the bone marrow to make ever-crucial red blood cells. Renin, meanwhile, regulates blood pressure, and Calcitriol is an active form of Vitamin D. Calcitriol also helps maintain calcium levels for bones at the same time as providing chemical balance in the body. What remains to be seen is whether your kidneys need any kind of support to perform their outstanding duties.
Enter the claims surrounding supposed kidney cleansing Teas – the word claim being the keyword because, as of yet, little scientific evidence backs these theories. The reality is that kidneys tend to be self-sufficient so long as you drink enough water and eat enough nutritional food. However, a poor diet, coupled with exposure to toxins and chronic stress, can impair kidney health. But whats the answer?
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Not Sweet: Too Much Iced Tea Causes Kidney Failure
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Drinking tea is good for your health. It may lower the risk of cancer, it can encourage weight loss, and recent studies have shown tea can help lower blood pressure.
But one Arkansas man discovered there can be too much of a good thing.
In May 2014, a 56-year-old man arrived at Central Arkansas Veterans Healthcare System, complaining of weakness, fatigue and body aches. Doctors discovered that his kidneys were failing. He was placed on dialysis. After questioning the patient, they learned that he drank 16 8-ounce glasses of iced tea daily, which is about 1 gallon.
Iced tea is full of oxalic acid, which, when taken in excess, deposits in your kidneys and mucks up the work of removing waste from the blood, says Scott Youngquist, MD, an emergency physician at University of Utah Health. This patient was drinking 16 8-ounce glasses of iced tea per day for an unknown period of time. This created a load of oxalic acid that his kidneys couldn’t handle, leading to renal failure.
Black tea is rich in oxalate, a compound found naturally in many foods. Too much of it can also lead to kidney stones. The man likely consumed 1,500 milligrams of the compound daily. As a comparison, the average person ingests between 150 and 500 milligrams of oxalate each day.
This kind of kidney failure has also been reported due to excessive consumption of star fruit, cucumber fruit, rhubarb and peanuts, Youngquist says.
Benefits Of Ginger Tea
Drinking Ginger tea will not only help to fight infection or kidney diseases but is also a cure to several ailments.
How to make Ginger Tea
To make ginger tea just grate washed and unpeeled ginger into the hot water, cover the pan and allow it to step for five minutes at low flame. You can add sweetener to it. Ginger should always be used unpeeled because all its nutritious and medicinal properties lies just below its skin.
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Benefits Of Dandelion Tea
Its anti-inflammatory effect helps to dissolve the kidney stones. It is a good source of vitamin A, B complex. C, D, E, Folate, Potassium, Magnesium, Iron and Zinc.
The root of Dandelion is often dried up and consumed as a tea but this whole plant is highly nutritious and edible loaded with vitamin, minerals, and fibers. The root of dandelion is rich in carbohydrate inulin that is a type of soluble fiber and helps in the growth and maintenance of healthy bacterial flora in the intestinal tract.
Drinking Dandelion tea will help to cleanse your kidney and maintain its healthy working.
Herbal Medicines For Kidney Health
Try these herbs for better kidney function. But remember to seek your doctor’s permission beforehand.
While parsley is taken for granted in the kitchen, this herb helps to flush out toxins by increasing production of urine. Studies have shown that the two ingredients in parsley apio and myristicin not only give it the diuretic properties, but also help to remove kidney stones and prevent buildup of bacteria.
2. Celery Root
Celery root has neutralizing properties that help to maintain a balanced pH within the body. It has diuretic properties that stimulate kidneys to remove excess microorganisms from the bloodstream. Celery root constitutes herbal medicine for kidneys with medically proven ability to treat some kidney diseases. The herb is also a rich source of potassium, an important mineral in better kidney functions.
Irrigation therapy is an alternative kidney stone treatment method that employs goldenrod and a large amount of fluids to flush the kidneys, reducing inflammation and the accompanying pain. The herb prevents bacterial infection in the kidneys and the whole urinary system.
Horsetail herb is anti-inflammatory and antioxidant. These properties promote healthy flow of fluids and excretion of toxins from the body. The stringent herb helps clean out harmful bacteria from the kidneys.
5. Marshmallow Root
9. Hydrangea Root
10. Gravel Root
13. Milk Thistle
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What Are The Facts About Herbal Supplements
The following facts about herbal supplements are true for everyone, with or without kidney disease. Herbal supplements often have more than one name: a common name and a plant name. Some common concerns include:
- The Food and Drug Administration does not regulate herbal supplements for dose, content, or pureness.
- Some herbal supplements have aristolochic acid, which is harmful to kidneys.
- Herbal supplements made in other countries may have heavy metals.
- There are few studies to show if herbal supplements have real benefits and even less information in patients with kidney disease.
- Herbal supplements may interact with prescription medicines to either decrease or increase how the medicine works.
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Effects Of Gtm On The Uptake Transport Mediated By Hoat1 And Hoat3
The effects of GTM on the uptake activity of hOAT1 and hOAT3 are shown in . GTM at 1/4, 1/2 and 1-fold serum concentrations significantly reduced the intracellular accumulation of 6-CF, an OAT1 substrate, by 43.9, 41.9 and 58.1%, respectively, when compared with blank serum specimen at corresponding concentrations. Likewise, GTM at 1/2 and 1-fold serum concentration significantly reduced the intracellular accumulation of 5-CF, an OAT3 substrate, by 36.4% and 31.3%, respectively, when compared to blank serum specimen at corresponding concentration. As positive control inhibitors of hOAT1 and hOAT3, probenecid significantly reduced the intracellular accumulation of 6-CF and 5-CF by 50.4 and 50.7%, respectively. These in vitro studies indicated that GTM significantly inhibited the uptake transport mediated by hOAT1 and hOAT3.
Effects of GTM and probenecid on the intracellular accumulation of 6-CF in CHO-hOAT1 cells and 5-CF in HEK293-hOAT3 cells .
*P< 0.05, **P< 0.01 and ***P< 0.001.
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