Kidney disease can affect every person and that is why people need to make sure that they do everything that is possible in order to avoid suffering from it. Nutrition is a very important part of the process not just for avoiding kidney diseases but for overall health as well. A person who does not introduce all the important and needed nutrients is more prone to suffering from various diseases.
Importance of nutrition
When a person is diagnosed with some sort of a kidney disease, the doctor will create a treatment plan that a person will need to follow in order to get better. In almost all treatment plans the diet is a very significant part. People need to know that they will need to make some changes in the diet if they suffer from a kidney disease. In addition to this, a person may need to change it even more if the situation gets worse and the disease worsens. Before making changes in the diet, the doctor will perform several tests in order to find out the overall nutritional health of the patient. Apart from the doctor, a person suffering from a kidney disease will need to talk to a dietitian as well. This is important because the dietitian will be able to help a person about the meals and the amount of nutrients that he or she should consume daily.
When the patient goes on a diet, the doctor will monitor his or her glomerular filtration rate or GFR in order to make sure that the kidneys are functioning the way they should. This rate can be measured with a simple blood test. A person’s age, sex and body size are also taken into consideration when GFR is being measured.
Should and shouldn’t
Almost every person knows that calories are very important and that there is a certain amount that people should consume every day. Overall health of a person depends a lot on the calories. A person who does not introduce enough calories will lack body energy and that is important for the almost all tasks that a person comes upon during a day. Maintaining a healthy weight depends on the amount of calories that a person consumes as well. In addition to this, calories will aid the body in the process of using the proteins for the building of muscles and tissues.
There are some diets which are known to limit the amount of protein and if that is the case a person will need to start consuming some other foods in order to provide enough calories for the body. Protein is a significant source of calories. However, people need not worry too much if this is the case because the dietitian will be able to help them choose the right foods which will provide enough calories. People need to know that simple carbohydrates like sugar, jam, honey and jelly are known to contain a lot of calories. Fats contain a lot of calories as well and people who need more calories can use olive oil or margarine more often. It is very important that people who suffer from kidney disease do not lose weight.
Apart from the calories, people who suffer from kidney disease need to consume a lot of protein as well. However, they should not consume too much of it but the right amount. The dietitian will be able to help the patients with any questions they might have. Almost every person knows that protein is important for building muscles, fighting infections and even repairing damaged tissue.
A person whose diet makes him or her consume a lot of protein will not have too much waste in his or her blood and that will aid the kidneys in functioning longer.
Protein comes from two sources which are animal and plant sources. Some of the best animal sources of protein are eggs, fish, chicken, red meat, milk products and cheese. On the other hand, the best plant sources of protein are vegetables and especially grains. People need to consume protein every day.
Important Nutrients in your Diet
Apart from calories and protein, there are other nutrients that people who suffer from kidney disease need to consume more. For instance, sodium is very important. The doctors claim that sodium is related to kidney disease and high blood pressure. This is why people need to make sure that they do not consume too much sodium if they suffer from kidney disease. The dietitian will be able to help the patient choose the foods which do not have a lot of sodium. Some of the foods that contain a lot of sodium are soy sauce, garlic or onion salt, canned foods, processed meats such as ham and bacon, salted snacks and dehydrated soups.
If the kidneys are not functioning properly they will not be able to get rid of excess phosphorous from the blood and a person will have high levels of it in the blood. High levels of phosphorous lead to itchiness and loss of calcium from the bones. This is why people need to cut back on foods high in phosphorous like pudding, yogurt, kidney beans, lentils, beer, hot chocolate and peanut butter.
Apart from these nutrients, people should talk to the dietitian about the consumption of calcium, potassium and how much fluids they should drink.