Are you are experiencing kidney problems as a result of kidney disease? If yes, you may be wondering which kind of foods you should include in your diet to assist you with the proper management of your illness. Just remember to always also first consult with a qualified medical practitioner before making any changes to your diet-habits which may affect your health. Now, without further ado, here are a number of food items that are considered to be great components of a healthy renal diet — as well as a number of food items which you should make an effort to avoid.
The following food items are deemed as “healthy” in the context of kidney disease:
Note: Some of the listed foods (marked green and underlined) are considered to be highly beneficial in the fight against kidney disease.
• Vegetables: Asparagus (in moderate amounts), Bell peppers (Paprika), Cabbage (red), Cauliflower, Celery, Garlic, Horseradish, Iceberg lettuce, Mushrooms, Onions, Parsley, Radishes, Mung bean sprouts.
• Selected protein sources: Fish, Chicken, Tempeh (a traditional soy product originally from Indonesia), Tofu. (Protein intake amount should be monitored)
• Plant Oils: Flax-seed Oil, Olive Oil.
• Nuts and seeds: Macadamia nuts, Sesame seeds.
• Fruits: Apples (without the skin), Apricots, Blueberries, Grapes, Olives, Peaches, Pears Pineapple, Plums,Raspberries, Strawberries, Watermelon. Please note that fruits are to be consumed in moderation due to their usually fairly high natural sugar content.
• Other food items, ingredients and/or spices: Hummus, unprocessed Sea Salt or Himalaya Salt (instead of regular Table Salt), Oregano, Curry Powder, Cinammon, Tumeric.
These foods and spices are great choices to include in a diet for people suffering from kidney disease or renal failure. Nevertheless, they are not the only foods that can be consumed, it’s just that these foods are considered as healthy or beneficial for a condition such as kidney disease. This is because they satisfy nutritional requirements looked for in a healthy renal diet which include: appropriate levels potassium, phosphorus and sodium. Though, as with most things in life, balance and moderation are key! This means that one should attempt to consume a balanced mix of the different categories of foods presented above, and avoid consuming too much of just a few of them.
It’s good to know that there are many foods which can be safely consumed by people suffering from kidney related problems. Unfortunately, there are also plenty of foods which should be avoided, or at least reduced in a significant manner, as they are known to exacerbate problems related to kidney disease.
The kinds of food items you should make an effort to avoid if possible (or consume in significantly lower ammounts) include the following:
• Highly processed foods: including pre-flavored packaged products, white flour, processed meat and fast food.
• Foods rich in sugar (particularly processed white sugar): such as sodas, cookies, cakes, muffins, chocolate, granola bars, many popular breakfast cereals (check the labels), canned fruits and of course candy in general.
• Alcohol: All kinds of alcohol, even red wine!
• Dairy products: cheese, cream, ice-cream, milk, yoghurt, and other foods containing dairy products.
• Gluten rich foods: such as barley, oats, rye, spelt(a.k.a dinkel wheat) and wheat.
• Red meat: such as beef, lamb, pork or veal.
Needles to say, the list of foods to be avoided can be expanded with many addtional examples. Nevertheless, the presented categories should provide enough orientation into what foods are best to be avoided in one’s diet (at least until the functioning of your kidneys is significantly restored — and even then it’s best keep the consumption of such foods to a low to moderate amount).
Sticking to a healthy and well balanced diet may not seem very easy for everyone, however, it really only takes a sincere will to change, along with some time and some getting used to. And the benefits are well worth the sacrifices! Also, if ones condition allows it (one’s kidney disease is not yet too advanced — stages 1, 2 or 3A), the easiest way to make some significant changes to one’s diet is to take one step at a time. So, one should try to gradually replace foods which are considered to be bad for the kidneys with foods that are considered to be good for them. And continue to do so until one’s diet consist mainly of the latter.
The importance of a healthy diet in the fight against kidney disease can simply not be stressed enough. Therefore, people suffering from kidney disease should make it a high priority goal to develop a good level of self-restraint and discipline when it comes to their food choices. Those who do so will certainly have a much better chance at overcoming their kidney related problems and restoring their overall quality of life.
If you found the kidney diet tips presented in this article useful, then you may also want to check out our article on 7 simple and easy tips on how to improve kidney function in a natural manner.