Two Weeks – One Per Kidney

Shown: A male with two kidneys. Not shown: A female with two kidneys (but don’t worry ladies, you’ve got them too).

The next stage of the Big Mountain Challenge is almost here. W00t!

For those of you who may have missed it, my friend Rick was recently named the winner of the challenge. This means he gets to hike (along with your’s truly) three epic mountains in the Banff Lake Louise area. He also gets a cheque for $15000 for The Kidney Foundation of Canada. That cheque could be as much as $25000 if we manage to raise $5000 over the next two weeks (as Banff Lake Louise Tourism will match whatever we raise up to the $5000 level).

Winning the contest was the first stage. Raising $5000 in two weeks is the second. And of course, finishing the three climbs represent stages three through five, respectively.

We’ve so got this.

But why do we care about kidneys? I mean, we each have two of them, right?

Well, perhaps it might be a good idea to get a general sense of what the kidneys do for us (assuming they are healthy) each and every day. According to the all-powerful and all-knowing Wikipedia:

“The kidneys are organs that serve several essential regulatory roles in most animals, including vertebrates and some invertebrates. They are essential in the urinary system and also serve homeostatic functions such as the regulation of electrolytes, maintenance of acid–base balance, and regulation of blood pressure (via maintaining salt and water balance). They serve the body as a natural filter of the blood, and remove wastes which are diverted to the urinary bladder. In producing urine, the kidneys excrete wastes such as urea and ammonium, and they are also responsible for the reabsorption of water, glucose, and amino acids. The kidneys also produce hormones including calcitriol, erythropoietin, and the enzyme renin.”

So you can imagine that if one or both of your kidneys are diseased, you’re entire body is going to suffer. Sadly, as of 2011 there were approximately 2.6 million Canadians who had kidney disease or were at risk of developing it. Check out this fact page for more information.

Knowing how many people suffer from kidney disease, and knowing that a cure is possible if we can manage to get the appropriate amount of funding to the people who research such things, raising as much money as we can is a no-brainer. We should do this, and we can do this.

For those of you interested in donating, a page for donations will be set up shortly. I’ll keep you posted as soon as it becomes available. Until then, please spread the word.

Your kidneys will thank you.


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