Low Protein Renal Diet – How to Effectively Use it to Reverse Kidney Disease Progression

The low protein renal diet controls the intake of fluid, protein, sodium, potassium, and phosphorus. One question that is often asked about this kidney diet is whether protein is allowed or not. Well, the answer is that it depends upon the status of your kidneys.

The amount nutrients in the diet are based on your blood levels of sodium, potassium, phosphorus, calcium, albumin, and urea. These levels are measured before and immediately after a dialysis treatment.

Fluid restriction is based on the amount of urine output and weight gain between dialysis treatments. That is, whatever goes out of your body in liquid form has to be replaced with water. Monitoring and taking note of your daily weight would be a good practice to indicate fluid retention which suggests kidney deterioration.

Preservation of renal function can delay the need for dialysis therapy. It can be accomplished by controlling the disease process, by controlling blood pressure and by reducing dietary protein intake and catabolism.

A kidney patient’s low protein renal diet depends on specific adjustments of dietary elements through the results of the client’s blood chemistry studies. Although there is some debate over whether and how to restrict proteins, keeping the daily intake of protein of high biologic value below 50 g may slow the progression of renal failure.

The amount of protein you can eat is based on how well your kidneys are functioning and the amount of protein needed to maintain good health. When protein is used by the body, waste products are formed and enter the blood. One of these wastes is called urea. Normal healthy kidneys are good at getting rid of urea. Failing kidneys are not good at this, but kidney patients should still eat protein.

As the renal disease progresses, the client’s ability and willingness to take in adequate nutrition diminish and the challenge becomes not only to maintain appropriate intake of non-protein calories but also to satisfy protein needs. In these instances, elemental diets, enteral feedings or total parenteral nutrition may be used instead of or in addition to regular food intake. This is why kidney dialysis diet is so important in order for patients to follow a proper balance of electrolytes, minerals, and fluid in patients who are on dialysis.

Low protein renal diet should be done with the approval of your health care provider. In fact, your health care provider would be so proud of you for taking a proactive approach to managing you kidney disease. Remember, ignorance is never an excuse to bad health habits.

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