It Is estimated that some 37 million Americans, or 1 out of every 7 adults, are living with kidney disease. While many have no idea about their CKD, those who do can understand the fear and uncertainty in preserving their kidney function and treating their condition as to slow the process and manage their disease properly. Nutrition certainly can play a big part in helping to slow the effects of the disease and potentially increasing kidney function. Here we will share with you some of the best foods that people living with CKD (chronic kidney disease) can safely include in their diets to encourage kidney health.
- Olive Oil – Many people with kidney disease may have a hard time keeping weight on, so healthy, high calorie fats are often encouraged. Olive oil can be used in so many ways making it one of the most popular choices. Not only can you use it for cooking, but it can be used as a dressing for salads, pastas, veggies, or in a marinade for meats. Olive oil is phosphorus free, which is important for people battling CKD.
- Skinless Chicken Breast – Too much protein can harm the kidneys but having a moderate amount of good protein is essential for overall health. By choosing a non-rotisserie skinless chicken that can be prepared at home with seasonings of your choice, you avoid the high sodium, potassium, and phosphorus that comes along with the precooked or skin on chicken. It is also versatile and can be prepared many ways, making it an ideal option for someone struggling with kidney disease.
- Arugula – While too much potassium can harm anyone, it is especially important for people living with kidney disease to ration in their daily nutrients. Arugula has a much lower content than its cousin’s spinach and kale, making it one of the better options when the kidney health is involved. Since arugula also contains nitrates known to lower blood pressure, (high blood pressure goes hand in hand with CKD), including this in the diet has flavorful and healthy benefits alike.
- Bell peppers – Also low in potassium, these nutrient rich gems are an ideal option for snacking or mealtimes for someone struggling with renal disease. Since they are loaded with both Vitamin C and Vitamin A, both which are known to boost the immune system, these should be a go to for anyone with CKD>
- Garlic – Missing salt? Since lowering sodium is such an important aspect of someone living with kidney disease, garlic provides a flavorful alternative to salt AND provides some other health benefits as well. Garlic also is a source for Vitamin C, Vitamin B6, and has known anti-inflammatory compounds.
Still hungry? Some other healthy options are cranberries (much touted for kidney health), pineapple, egg whites, and sea bass – you should definitely consult your doctor when making any dietary changes, but in the world of kidney health, these fast foods are approved!