World Kidney Day is annually celebrated on the second Thursday of March and this year, it coincides with International Women's Month, March 8.

Launched in 2006, World Kidney Day is a joint initiative by the International Federation of Kidney Foundations (IFKF) and International Society of Nephrology (ISN). It aims to not only raise awareness on kidney importance and health but also highlight how diabetes and high blood pressure contribute to a higher risk of developing chronic kidney disease or CKD. In celebration of this worldwide event, here are some kidney Functions you may not be aware of and some tips on how to keep your kidneys healthy.

1. Filters different types of waste from the body

Kidneys are a marvelous organ that is vital to one's survival. It is a life-sustaining organ that filters different kinds of waste from the body and excreting it as urine.

According to the National Kidney Foundation, the kidneys filter as much as 200 quarts of blood every day. So it naturally makes sense that in order to lessen the waste that the kidneys filter from our body, we must also be conscious about the waste that we may be putting into our bodies.

2. Catches the waste that passes through the lungs

Because kidneys act as a filter for the entire body, they are also responsible for catching those sneaky dust, dirt and other particles that find their way into the blood.

According to Parade, a study conducted by the Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis and the Veterans’ Affairs Clinical Epidemiology Center found that nano-particles of dust, dirt, smoke, and soot may "disrupt kidney function.

These nano-particles are not caught in the lungs and instead find their way into the bloodstream, making it the kidneys' job to catch them.

3. Controls the production of red blood cells

Aside from acting as a filter, kidneys also regulate the production of the hormone erythropoietin, which signals the bone marrow to produce Red Blood Cells, which are vital for delivering oxygen from the lungs to the entire body.

4. Helps maintain strong bones

Healthy bones are often attributed to ample calcium intake, but most don't know that kidneys do play a part in maintaining strong bones, too. According to Whole Foods Magazine, kidneys produce calcitriol, an active form of Vitamin D, which then manages calcium and phosphorous in the blood, ensuring that calcium is absorbed by the body.

5. Regulates blood pressure and maintains pH levels

As the heart's major partner in crime, kidneys make sure that the size of blood vessels are correct at all times to maintain a regular blood pressure. Likewise, kidneys also maintain the right pH or acid levels in the body by removing acids to maintain optimal health.

To keep kidneys healthy, regular exercise, proper diet, and at least seven hours of sleep are recommended. Health experts also encourage smokers to quit and drinkers to moderate and lessen their alcohol intake. For more information on kidney health, visit