Which two organ systems work to maintain pH balance in the human body? The lungs and kidneys do this through their ability to filter out the acid content of foods and excrete them. They both contribute to a constant blood pH. In this article, you’ll learn about each of these systems. But which organ system plays the most important role? Let’s get started by learning about the lungs.
Your lungs are responsible for regulating the pH balance in your blood. The lungs release carbon dioxide as a waste product when you breathe. This process can cause excess CO2 and lactic acid to enter your bloodstream when you exercise. Excess CO2 in the bloodstream can affect the way organs and tissues work. However, it is important to note that the lungs’ job is not all about keeping your blood pH balanced.
When your cells release carbon dioxide into the air, it is carried to your lungs. The carbon dioxide in your lungs is neutral compared to the carbon dioxide you inhale. The lungs and brain work together to regulate pH balance. Our breathing rate is the easiest and fastest way to keep our blood pH in the right range. And it takes very little thought. Therefore, it is an important organ to support.
Your lungs work to keep the pH balance in your blood in two ways. First, they release hydrogen ions into the blood and carbon dioxide ions come off hemoglobin. Hemoglobin buffers the hydrogen ions released during bicarbonate conversion. This process reduces the concentration of carbon dioxide in your blood, driving the pH back to its normal level. The second way is through your kidneys. When you have an excessive amount of acid in your blood, your kidneys remove the excess acid or base from your blood by excreting bicarbonate and driving your pH level back toward its normal range.
When the pH of the blood is out of balance, the body suffers from metabolic alkalosis, a condition in which the blood has too much bicarbonate, or acid. This condition is often a sign of kidney disease. On the other hand, respiratory alkalosis occurs when the body doesn’t produce enough carbon dioxide, which can be caused by lung disease or high altitude. The kidneys play a key role in maintaining the proper pH balance in the body, as an alkaline state is vital for optimal body function. The ideal pH level in the body is slightly alkaline, or slightly acidic. The kidneys’ job is to maintain this balance, which is known as homeostasis.
The kidneys help the body maintain a proper pH level by secreting hydrogen H+ ions and reabsorbing bicarbonate. While the lungs are faster at compensating for the loss of hydrogen ions, the kidneys are more effective at pH regulation. Physiologically, the kidneys produce two major buffers: bicarbonate and ammonium. The former is water-soluble, while the latter is a salty compound.
During normal breathing, the brain regulates the amount of carbon dioxide exhaled. This process can change the pH level minute by minute. When this process fails, the kidneys make adjustments to the blood pH more slowly than the lungs. Depending on the level of carbon dioxide, kidneys can reduce or increase the blood’s pH level within a few hours.
The lymphatic system transports body fluids from the tissues to the blood stream, maintaining a ph balance. The lymphatic system comprises various structures, including capillaries and collecting vessels. The capillaries are divided into two categories: primary and secondary. The primary lymphatics contain one-way valves that open when the interstitial fluid pressure increases in the vessel, and the secondary lymphatics do not have them. The primary and secondary collecting lymphatics wall structure is similar to that of blood vessels. They consist of three layers, each composed of endothelial cells and smooth muscle. They are separated from the collecting lymphatics by a specialized structure called a lymphangion.
The lymphatic system also contains filters, known as lymph nodes. Lymphatic nodes are small kidney-shaped organs that collect lymph from various peripheral tissues. These organs filter and screen pathogens, as well as other immune cells. The fluid and immune cells move over specialised blood vessels, called high endothelial venules. The human body has between 500 and 600 lymph nodes. The lymphatic system contains a powerful substance, known as vasodilator, which was first identified in blood vessels. It dampens the contraction of lymphatic muscle.
The lymphatic system removes toxins and harmful waste products from cells and returns it to the bloodstream. The respiratory system also regulates the body’s pH balance by producing carbon dioxide, which is converted to carbonic acid. As the carbon dioxide in the air reaches the lymphatic system, it is converted to acid and affects the pH balance. If you have trouble breathing, it is important to check the lymphatic system.