A man or woman weak in the kidneys is like a. board with a knot in it. With any severe strain away goes the whole fabric; it becomes broken and useless.
Vitality of the kidneys must be maintained. These very useful organs must be watched with the most jealous care. It is their work to carry off the greater part of the waste fluids of the body. Much solid waste matter, too, in the form of very small particles, is eliminated in the fluid ejected by the kidneys.
Now, the kidneys may be given proper hardiness combined with muscular flexibility, just as easily as may the biceps. Note that I say proper hardiness. The kidneys are delicate organs that need strengthening. Yet how many, even among athletes in training, ever give a thought to the strength of these organs. The kidneys are there, and they appear to be doing their work properly. Is that all the thought that need be given them until they complain through the medium of disease? No! Most emphatically no! The kidneys need care no matter how healthy they are, and by proper care they can be strengthened. But bow?
First, in the way of gentle exercise by massage. Stand erect, with the hands resting just back of the hips and over the kidneys. Massage strongly up-ward and downward, applying the heel of each hand over one of the kidneys. Continue this for one or two full minutes every time that you exercise.
Follow this up by kneading over the kidneys for about the same length of time. Clench the hands and apply the knuckles of the fingers over the region of the kidneys. Start with the fists close to the spine, and knead forward over the organs, stopping only when you have reached the sides of the trunk just under the lowest ribs. Then knead backward again, and repeat this movement several times.
Then follow up the kneading by striking over the same surfaces with the tips of the fingers, continuing this percussion, in the forward movements, until you touch the abdomen. Then go backward and forward again.
In all of these impacts touch gently, briskly and firmly, but not too severely, for the kidneys are quickly susceptible to discomfort. Gradually, however, it will be found possible to increase the rigor of the impact without causing any discomfort. Then you will know that you have succeeded in developing strong and sound kidneys.
Diseases of the kidneys are everywhere prevalent in civilized communities. Advanced Bright’s disease is considered incurable by many members of the medical profession. In fact, when the disease is too far developed, but little hope can be offered by any method of treatment. When one considers the dietetic habits of the average person, it is not by any means surprising that so many suffer from this disease. In character it is very insidious. Sometimes its presence may not be recognized for a long period. In chronic Bright’s disease, the kidneys totally lose their ability to perform their duty. This malady is far more common than is supposed.
The symptoms of acute Bright’s disease are mostly a pain in the region of the kidneys, frequent urination, suppression of urine, urine very dark, and dirty color, and dropsical swellings in various parts of the body. If the disease has become chronic, the bodily strength gradually decreases. Bronchitis, watery diarrhoea, pleurisy, enlargement of the heart, and frequent headaches often accompany Bright’s disease in its advanced stages.
Congestion of the kidneys is usually indicated by the urine being either very abundant and very pale, or else scanty and highly colored. Hemorrhages are indicated by bloody urine.
Acute diseases of the kidneys, coming under the head of congestion, inflammation and hemorrhage, may in some cases be the result of an accident, or may be accompanied by some other disease. Inflammation of the kidneys is not infrequently a complication with scarlet fever, measles, diphtheria, and diseases of this character. The most common cause, however, is the free use of alcoholic beverages, whiskey, beer, wine, bard cider, etc.
Stimulating and improper foods also have much to do with inducing the disease. The use of alcoholic liquors and excessive feeding are evils that are closely associated with it. Alcoholic liquors, unless used to excess, always stimulate the appetite and incline one to eat too freely. This is equally true of all meats, very highly seasoned dishes, and other articles which, if one desires to continuously enjoy normal health, should be religiously avoided.
Persistent neglect to drink a sufficient quantity of pure water, and the lack of exercise, are also very prominent causes of the ailment. The circulation becomes sluggish, and the activity of the depurating organs is greatly lessened when one follows a sedentary occupation. Smoking is another incitement of kidney trouble, and when the patient is addicted to this habit the disease is far harder to cure. Wearing too heavy clothing and persistent neglect of regular bathing lessen the activity of the excretory organs of the skin. This adds to the work of the kidneys, and unquestionably makes them more liable to some form or the other of disease.
One of the first methods to adopt in treating the acute manifestations of diseases of the kidneys should be the application of very hot cloths to the small of the back. The flushing treatment must be used to thoroughly cleanse the lower bowel of all impurities, and following this, the patient should be wrapped in warm blankets to induce copious perspiration. Large quantities of the purest distilled water should be drunk daily. If this cannot be se-cured, pure rain water will do as well.
In the acute stages of the disease, absolutely no food should be allowed until the inflammation, congestion or hemorrhage has subsided.
In the treatment of chronic Bright’s disease, every possible endeavor must be made to build up the body to the highest state of attainable vigor. Mild exercises of all kinds that tend to accelerate the circulation are advised. In addition to the massage, knead-
. ing and percussion as already described, exercises that call for the turning and twisting of the trunk, and bending of the body, should be employed. But in the case of these, care should be taken that the work is not severe enough to cause pain in the region of the kidneys themselves. Remember that much harm will be done by straining weak kidneys. Deep breathing in the open air and long walks can be taken with the greatest possible benefit.
Frequent fasts of from two to seven days in duration are absolutely essential if a speedy recovery is desired. Between fasting periods only two meals a day should be eaten, and pure water should be kept at hand at all times and used freely between meals.
Drink no liquid- at meal times. Avoid absolutely all stimulating drinks such as tea, coffee, and alcohol. Meats, spices, and every article of food that would be inclined to stimulate the appetite or make one over-eat, must be strictly avoided.
Tobacco must be tabooed if a complete cure is to be expected.
Live in the open air as much as you can. Ventilate your sleeping room very thoroughly. During fasting periods, if your circulation is very poor, and feet are cold at night, use a hot-water bottle to maintain warmth.
Special endeavors should be made to keep all the depurating organs extremely active. If the bowels are not regular, laxative foods must be used to bring about such a condition. In case this cannot be done immediately, use the colon flushing treatment at intervals of from one to three days, to secure thorough cleansing of this main sewer of the body.
A thorough friction bath, taken with brushes, or a very rough towel, such as has been described, should immediately follow the exercises that are to be used at rising in the morning, provided that the patient is fairly strong. Wipe the body off with a cold wet towel directly after the dry friction bath.
Even Bright’s disease can be cured in nearly every case by these methods. It should be remembered, however, that the most remarkable effects can be se-cured almost immediately from an absolute fast, drinking water to the extent of your desires during its continuance. The inflammation subsides, and improvement is forthwith induced, if the fasting is adopted in connection with the other regime advised.
Exercise 1. – Place the partially closed hands against the part of the body near the waist line, as shown in opposite illustration. Now move the hands back and forth, pressing inwardly as vigorously as you can without discomfort. Take this exercise from the backbone outward and also downward.