Water helps dissolve minerals and nutrients, making them more accessible to the body. It also helps remove waste products. The kidneys play a key role in balancing fluid levels.

These two functions make water vital to the kidneys. Every day, the kidneys filter around 120-150 quarts of fluid. Of these, approximately 1-2 quarts are removed from the body in the form of urine, and the rest is recovered by the bloodstream.

Water is essential for the kidneys to function. If the kidneys do not function properly, waste products and excess fluid can build up inside the body.

Untreated, chronic kidney disease can lead to kidney failure. The organs stop working, and either dialysis or kidney transplantation is required.

Urinary tract infections (UTIs) are the second most common type of infection in the body. They account for around 8.1 million visits to health care providers in the U.S. every year.

If infections spread to the upper urinary tract, including the kidneys, permanent damage can result. Sudden, or acute, kidney infections can be life-threatening, particularly if septicemia occurs.

Drinking plenty of water is a simple way to reduce the risk of developing a UTI and to help treat an existing UTI.

Kidney stones interfere with how the kidneys work. When present, can complicate UTIs. These complicated UTIs tend to require longer periods of antibiotics to treat them, typically lasting 7 to 14 days.

The leading cause of kidney stones is a lack of water. People who report them often do not drink the recommended daily amount of water. Kidney stones may also increase the risk of chronic kidney disease.

In November 2014, the American College of Physicians issued new guidelines for people who have previously developed kidney stones. The guidelines state that increasing fluid intake to enable 2 liters of urination a day could decrease the risk of stone recurrence by at least half with no side effects.

Dehydration happens if we use and lose more water than the body takes in. It can lead to an imbalance in the body’s electrolytes. Electrolytes, such as potassium, phosphate, and sodium, help carry electrical signals between cells. The kidneys keep the levels of electrolytes in the body stable when they function properly.

When the kidneys are unable to maintain a balance in the levels of electrolytes, these electrical signals become mixed up. This can lead to seizures, involving involuntary muscle movements and loss of consciousness.

In severe cases, dehydration can lead to kidney failure, which can be life-threatening. Possible complications of chronic kidney failure include anemia, damage to the central nervous system, heart failure, and a compromised immune system.

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