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Diet for kidney patients

Patients with chronic kidney disease, a properly balanced nutrition play a vital role in maintaining the body health and preventing further kidney degeneration.  In kidney disease, the body does not get rid of the waste and unwanted nutrients like toxic fluids, extra nutrients. These further buildup in the body and affect the kidney even more. Hence a change in the diet is a solution to keep the health of the kidney.

Depending on the intensity of the kidney disease, the principal component nutrients include protein, potassium, phosphorous, sodium and fluids.

1. Protein: principal function of the protein is to build and maintain bones, muscle, skin and hair. With the kidney disease, lower protein diet, he body condition worsened. Meats, seafood, eggs, legumes are good sources of protein. Seafood like shellfish, fish, and meat like beef, lean, lamb, pork, loin pork, turkey are the essential sources of protein.

2. Potassium: functions primarily for working of muscles and nerves. Any changes in the potassium level, affect the tonicity of muscles, hence their functioning. Hence a low potassium diet has to be maintained.

Apple, apricot nectar, cherries, cranberry juice, grapes, grapefruit juice, pear, lemon, lime, pineapple, plum, cabbage, corn, cucumber, onions, spinach, carrots, asparagus, alfalfa sprouts, lettuce, peppers are the fruits and vegetables giving less than 200 mg of potassium per serving.

For limiting potassium,  these foods are to be eaten in a limit or avoided: banana, dried fruits, melon, mango, avocado, potatoes, broccoli, pumpkin, dried peas and beans.

3. Phosphorous: kidneys mainly control the balance of phosphorous in the body. When phosphorus is built up in the body, it removes calcium from the bones, leading to weakening of bones which break easily and cause severe pain. And too much phosphorous in the body, in the blood causes heart disease.

For a low phosphorous diet, milk substitutes like almond milk, rice milk, other supplements like angel food or cake, animal crackers, bun, cereals, cooked cereals except for oats, cookies of apple, berry, butter, popcorn, pita pocket.

To limit the phosphorous intake, boxed foods, cocoa, salad dressings, cheese(processed), light cream, soymilk.

4. Sodium: the primary and the most vital nutrient to be taken care of. The limit for sodium should be maintained, to prevent excess fluid from building in the body. When too much fluid is retained in the body, the blood pressure shoots up, suffer from breathlessness, and damage to the kidney and heart are observed.

Low sodium containing foods are bread, buns, rolls, desserts and pastries made from starch without much-added salts, fruits, meats without added sodium, homemade soups, vegetables without added salt.

The high sodium containing foods which should be prevented are boxed foods, cheese and cheese spreads, fast food, frozen dinners, soya and other Asian sauces, canned soups and vegetables.

5. Calcium: Calcium is another mineral component, calcium can affect kidney functioning, hence is limited by eating low-phosphorous containing foods. Phosphorus binders and high calcium content foods are to be avoided, as they deposit on the nephrons.

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