Dialysis Diet/Kidney Disease Diet for Those with Renal Disease

Renal disease is a difficult disease.  When someone hears they have renal disease, their first thought is that of impending death.  Mostly, this is not necessarily the case.  With adequate care and proper renal failure diet, the patient can be successfully treated.  A dialysis diet or kidney disease diet plan is very essential for successful care of renal disease.  As with any diet, it will not be easy.  Working with a dietitian will help the patient learn proper foods and nutritional habits needed for effective care.  There are several basic rules, most of which are as follows:

  • As much as possible avoid salt and MSG (monosodium glutamate) intake.  Read labels to be sure of what you are eating. Low sodium alternative foods are now easily available, examples include: Salt-free herbal seasonings, Unsalted Pretzels, Unsalted popcorn, Frozen vegetables, Plain rice, Plain noodles, etc.
  • Reduce your Protein consumption. Alternatives may include Egg substitutes, Shrimp, Tofu, Imitation crab meat, Chicken drumstick, beef stew. Try to eat no more than 5 – 7 ounces of protein daily.
  • Limit Fluids consumption.  Consume no more than 48 fl. oz. per day, remember that soups, jello and ice cream also count as fluids.  Grapes oranges, apples, lettuce and celery as well do have fluids in them. Take everything into consideration.
  • Limit Potassium intake. Be sure not to use salt substitutes as they contain a lot of potassium.  Possible alternatives are: apples and apple juice, cranberry juice, canned fruit, strawberries, blueberries, raspberries, plums, pineapple, cabbage, cauliflower, mustard greens, and broccoli.
  • Limit Phosphorus intake: Limit intake of dairy products including milk, yogurt and ice cream as these contain a high percentage of Phosphorus. Avoid nuts, peanut butter, seeds, lentils, peas and beans.  Do away with beer, cola drinks and cocoa products. The following items should also be included in your “watch list”, Liquid non-dairy creamer, sherbet, pasta rice, rice and corn cereals, unsalted popcorn, green beans, lemon-lime soda, root beer and powdered iced tea and lemonade mixes.

To be on the safer side, all decisions about your food intake should be made in consultation with a dietitian who is working in conjunction with your doctor.  Generally, dietary requirements may vary. You may have specific dietary requirements that other persons may not have, or there may be some requirements that you need not follow on your renal diet.  In most cases, following a strict dialysis diet or kidney disease diet, and undergoing dialysis for a brief period of time may get your renal functions back in good working order.  It all depends on the etiology for your specific condition. There may be a need to stay on medication for a while as well. Come what may – you can do it! Good luck.