Kidney & Urinary Health

Last Updated: August 16 2022

The Kidney and Urinary Health category covers common conditions in addition to supplements and diets that may have kidney or urinary side effects.

What does kidney and urinary health encompass?

Kidneys are critical for a variety of functions. The kidneys are made up of nephrons, which filter out waste, toxins, and excess water from the blood and balance electrolyte levels. Waste is stored in the bladder and excreted as urine. The kidneys and urinary health category encompasses normal function of the nephrons and the urinary tract and prevention of acute and chronic kidney diseases.[1]

How could diet affect kidney and urinary health?

A Western dietary pattern, which is rich in animal protein and contains low amounts of fruits and vegetables, is associated with an increased risk of kidney disease. Diets that are high in phosphates, salt, and animal fat may worsen kidney function. In contrast, diets high in fruits and vegetables require less filtration capacity of individual nephrons and therefore help to prevent deterioration of kidney function. Diets associated with good kidney health include the DASH diet, the mediterranean-diet, and the vegetarian diet.[1] [2]

Which supplements are of most interest for kidney and urinary health?

Supplements of interest for kidney health include antioxidants (e.g., vitamin-c, vitamin-e, and bicarbonate).[3] For urinary health, supplements of interest include cranberry, probiotics, D-mannose, and certain Chinese herbal products.[4]