Q:

What foods do you avoid when you have kidney disease?

A:

Quick Answer

Individuals with kidney disease avoid foods high in phosphorus, protein, sodium and possibly other nutrients, according to the National Kidney Foundation. Each individual’s optimal diet depends on various factors including the degree of kidney function and the stage of the disease.

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What foods do you avoid when you have kidney disease?
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Full Answer

A dietitian or health care provider determines a beneficial diet for the specific case of kidney disease, according to the National Kidney Foundation. Regular blood tests ensure that the diet is appropriate for the patient’s current condition.

An individual using dialysis treatment for kidney disease restricts certain foods to keep a balanced level of minerals, fluids and electrolytes to limit the buildup of fluid and waste products in the body, according to MedlinePlus. Such a person avoids foods that contain a lot of water, such as popsicles, lettuce, celery, grapes and soups.

Kidney patients avoid potassium because it sometimes accumulates causes dangerous heart rhythms, according to MedlinePlus. Various fruits and vegetables are high in potassium, such as oranges, bananas, tomatoes, asparagus and pumpkin.

Doctors limit protein before some people begin dialysis but recommend a high-protein diet for others, according to MedlinePlus. It is wise for kidney patients to avoid foods that are high in phosphorus. These include milk, most cheeses and yogurt. A doctor sometimes recommends the use of phosphorous binder medication to limit phosphorus intake. Kidney patients avoid salty foods because they contribute to high blood pressure, fluid retention and thirst.

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