Q:

What type of diet should you eat if you have nephrotic syndrome?

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Quick Answer

Foods that dieticians might recommend for people with nephrotic syndrome include lean proteins and foods low in fat, cholesterol and salt, states Drugs.com. Fat and cholesterol contribute to high blood cholesterol levels in people with the condition, and salt can increase the edema, or swelling, they experience.

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Full Answer

Damage to the small blood vessels in the kidneys that filter waste and excess water from the blood is a common cause of nephrotic syndrome, which in turn causes the body to lose too much protein through urine, notes Drugs.com. People with nephrotic syndrome experience swelling, especially in the feet and ankles, foamy urine, and weight gain from retaining fluid. High cholesterol and blood pressure, blood clots, kidney disease, malnutrition and infections are possible complications of nephrotic syndrome.

Several conditions may cause the damage to blood vessels in the kidneys that leads to nephrotic syndrome, such as diabetes, lupus, blood clots in kidney veins, and membranous nephropathy, in which the membranes of the blood vessels become thickened, according to Drugs.com. Doctors may treat nephrotic syndrome with medications to lower cholesterol, blood thinners, diuretics to control swelling, and drugs that suppress the immune system. They may refer patients to dieticians to discuss special diets that primarily help people deal with the complications of the condition.

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