Lifestyle and home remediesBy Mayo Clinic staff
As part of your treatment for chronic kidney disease, your doctor may recommend a special diet to help support your kidneys and limit the work they must do. Ask your doctor for a referral to a dietitian who can analyze your current diet and suggest ways to make your diet easier on your kidneys.
Depending on your situation, kidney function and overall health, your dietitian may recommend that you:
- Avoid products with added salt. Lower the amount of sodium you eat each day by avoiding products with added salt, including many convenience foods, such as frozen dinners, canned soups and fast foods. Other foods with added salt include salty snack foods, canned vegetables, and processed meats and cheeses.
- Choose lower potassium foods. Your dietitian may recommend that you choose lower potassium foods at each meal. High-potassium foods include bananas, oranges, potatoes, spinach and tomatoes. Examples of low-potassium foods include apples, cabbage, green beans, grapes and strawberries.
- Limit the amount of protein you eat. Your dietitian will estimate the appropriate number of grams of protein you should eat each day and make recommendations based on that amount. High-protein foods include meats, eggs, milk, cheese and beans. Low-protein foods include vegetables, fruits, most breads and most cereals. Some breads and cereals include ingredients that make them high in protein, so check the label.
- Goldman L, et al. Cecil Medicine. 24th ed. Philadelphia, Pa.: Saunders Elsevier; 2012. http://www.mdconsult.com/das/book/body/191371208-2/0/1492/0.html#. Accessed April 2, 2012.
- Ferri FF. Ferri's Clinical Advisor 2012: 5 Books in 1. Philadelphia, Pa.: Mosby Elsevier; 2012. http://www.mdconsult.com/books/about.do?about=true&eid=4-u1.0-B978-0-323-05611-3..C2009-0-38601-8--TOP&isbn=978-0-323-05611-3&uniqId=291436269-101. Accessed April 2, 2012.
- Marx JA, et al. Rosen's Emergency Medicine: Concepts and Clinical Practice. 7th ed. Philadelphia, Pa.: Mosby Elsevier; 2010. http://www.mdconsult.com/books/about.do?about=true&eid=4-u1.0-B978-0-323-05472-0..X0001-1--TOP&isbn=978-0-323-05472-0&uniqId=230100505-57. Accessed April 2, 2012.
- Bope ET, et al. Conn's Current Therapy. Philadelphia, Pa.: Saunders Elsevier; 2012. http://www.mdconsult.com/books/about.do?eid=4-u1.0-B978-1-4377-0986-5..C2009-0-38984-9--TOP&isbn=978-1-4377-0986-5&about=true&uniqId=236797353-5. Accessed April 3, 2012.
- About chronic kidney disease: A guide for patients and their families. National Kidney Foundation. http://www.kidney.org/atoz/content/aboutckd.cfm. Accessed April 3, 2012.
- Coping effectively: A guide to living well with kidney failure. National Kidney Foundation. http://www.kidney.org/atoz/pdf/coping.pdf. Accessed April 3, 2012.
- Kidney failure: Choosing a treatment that's right for you. National Kidney & Urologic Diseases Information Clearinghouse. http://kidney.niddk.nih.gov/KUDiseases/pubs/choosingtreatment/index.aspx. Accessed April 2, 2012.
- Chronic kidney disease stage 5: Nutrition guidelines. Nutrition Care Manual. American Dietetic Association. http://nutritioncaremanual.org/index.cfm. Accessed April 3, 2012.
- The kidneys and how they work. National Kidney & Urologic Diseases Information Clearinghouse. http://kidney.niddk.nih.gov/kudiseases/pubs/yourkidneys/. Accessed April 4, 2012.
- El-Zoghby ZM (expert opinion). Mayo Clinic, Rochester, Minn. May 1, 2012.
- Anderson CF (expert opinion). Mayo Clinic, Rochester, Minn. April 24, 2012.
- Rethinking drinking: Alcohol and your health. National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism. http://pubs.niaaa.nih.gov/publications/RethinkingDrinking/Rethinking_Drinking.pdf. Accessed May 8, 2012.
- Dietary guidelines for Americans, 2010. U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. http://www.cnpp.usda.gov/DGAs2010-PolicyDocument.htm. Accessed May 8, 2012.
- Post R (expert opinion). U.S. Department of Agriculture, Alexandria, Va. Aug. 8, 2011.