In Traditional Chinese Medicine, the kidneys are the ocean of the human body. Since oceans are situated on a lower level than the earth's streams and rivers, they draw every one of them to form one large body of water, and in charge of storing essence (jing).

Emotionally speaking, will, determination, and power of memory are attributed to the kidneys. When kidney jing becomes exhausted, a weak will and poor memory will result.

Intense or prolonged fear, the emotion associated with the kidney, will cause injury to the kidney energy, and likewise, a physical deficiency of kidney jing can cause panicky and fearful behavior.

Your body’s bones and marrow, ears and sense of hearing, and hair on the top of your head are also governed by your kidneys. Thus, according to TCM, weak bones, ringing in the ears (tinnitus), and premature hair loss or greying are all related to weak kidneys.

Physiologically speaking, your kidneys:

~ Keep the composition of your blood balanced.
~ Regulate the amount of fluid in the body.
~ Control balance of electrolytes in your blood.
~ Help to control blood pressure.
~ Perform the complex process of the formation of urine. This process involves filtration that removes waste and toxins from the blood while retaining essential molecules, and also balances key hormones in the blood.

Virtually every person has some degree of sludge build up and some loss of kidney function over time, even those who never develop painful kidney stones. Here are some tips for life-long kidney health:

1. Eat a high raw plant based diet (fruits and veggies) which allows the body system to alkalize via the kidneys.

2. Drink enough water so that the urine is a light yellow color. It is more kind to your kidneys to drink smaller amounts of water throughout the day, than to chug a massive amount at once. That creates stress for the kidneys.

3. Consider Chanca Piedra tea. A tea I have been recommending to my clients for many years, and is included in the Juice Cleanse protocol. It is an herb that is: Antilithic (stone breaking), Diuretic (water removing), Antiseptic (infection killing), and stimulating to renal tissue.

4. Focus on foods that very dark (even black) in color. These would include dark fruits and vegetables: black beans, black sesame seeds, black grapes, and black walnuts.

5. He Shou Wu: Consider this amazing herb which has the ability to accumulate a huge amount of Qi into its root. This herb can tonify the kidneys and the blood, calm the nervous system, maintain the strength and stability of the lower back and knees (areas related to kidney health), maintain sex drive, and help combat premature greying hair. It's also a great source of iron.