The kidneys are two bean-shaped organs that are around the size of a fist. These are placed on each side of your spine, directly below the rib cage. Every minute, healthy kidneys filter about a half cup of blood, eliminating wastes and excess water to produce urine. Urine travels from the kidneys to the bladder via two thin muscle tubes called ureters, one on each side of the bladder. Urine is stored in your bladder. The urinary tract includes your kidneys, ureters, and bladder. Your kidneys are responsible for removing waste and excess fluid from your body. Your kidneys also eliminate acid created by your body's cells and keep a healthy balance of water, salts, and minerals in your blood, such as sodium, calcium, phosphorus, and potassium. Each of your kidneys is composed of approximately a million filtering units known as nephrons. Each nephron has a filter called the glomerulus as well as a tubule. The nephrons filter your blood in two steps: the glomerulus filters it, and the tubule returns required chemicals to your blood while removing wastes.
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