More than 15% of American adults, or around 37 million individuals, have chronic renal disease, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Limiting sodium, phosphorus, and potassium was a primary emphasis of CKD dietary recommendations until recently. Because of this, many plant foods, such as fruits, vegetables, and whole grains, were traditionally off-limits to those with CKD despite being rich sources of these nutrients. Recent studies have highlighted innovative approaches to the kidney diet, revolutionizing the way we manage renal health.
Focusing on total Kidney Diet quality — which includes more plant foods — is, however, recommended by newer research and guidelines, such as the National Kidney Foundation’s 2020 Kidney Disease Outcomes Quality Initiative (KDOQI) Clinical Practice Guideline for Nutrition in CKD, developed in partnership with the Academy. It is possible that this method, in conjunction with a personalized nutrition intervention, may be more successful in halting CKD’s development than following predetermined dietary limits alone.
The Mediterranean Kidney Diet, the DASH diet, the Nordic diet, and the vegan and vegetarian diet have all been linked to improved kidney function. Following these dietary guidelines has been linked to a lower risk of developing chronic kidney disease. In addition, the course of CKD is generally slowed when patients adopt certain dietary behaviors.
Here Are Some New Approaches to the Kidney Diet ;
1. Protein from Plants Vs. Protein from Animals
Adults with CKD stages 3 through 5 who are “metabolically stable” and not on dialysis are encouraged to restrict their protein intake and be closely monitored, according to the KDOQI recommendations and the Academy’s Evidence Analysis Library. Although both recommendations declare that there is inadequate evidence to suggest either animal or plant protein as superior, they do so based on the best knowledge available as of April 2017. (or through August 2018 for any of the consensus opinion statements).
“While there was insufficient data to support a strong recommendation at that time, additional evidence favoring plant-based proteins has been published since,” says Annamarie Rodriguez, RDN, LD, FAND, who has worked as a nephrology dietitian for nearly 25 years and served on the boards of several renal-related groups and held positions in the Academy and affiliate groups. She also maintains a private practice while working full-time for an infusion firm.
Whether or whether plant proteins are the primary source of protein in the Kidney Diet, there is sufficient evidence to support the advantages of including more plant foods and plant proteins for patients or clients with CKD or at risk for CKD. Collaborative efforts between clinicians, dietitians, and researchers have resulted in multidisciplinary approaches to the kidney diet, ensuring comprehensive care that addresses not only nutritional aspects but also psychosocial and lifestyle factors.
2. Plant foods’ effects on chronic kidney disease
Potential advantages of a plant-based Kidney Diet and plant-based protein consumption for people with CKD include reduced inflammation, decreased uremic toxins, decreased metabolic acidosis, an improved gut microbiome due to an increase in fiber intake, and a decreased bioavailability of certain nutrients, including phosphorus and potassium.
Inflammation and inflammatory co-morbidities are more common in people with CKD. Type 2 diabetes affects 40 percent of those with CKD, whereas cardiovascular disease affects 65 percent and hypertension affects 50 percent to 75 percent. People with CKD have a higher risk of dying from cardiovascular disease than the general population. In the approaches to the kidney diet, a mindful approach to phosphorus consumption is crucial to prevent mineral imbalances and maintain bone health.
Comorbidities and inflammation are reduced in those who follow plant-based Kidney Diets like the Mediterranean, DASH, vegan, and vegetarian. A 2019 research indicated heart-protective advantages from consuming at least 800 grams, or roughly five servings, of fruits and vegetables daily. In addition, according to Rodriguez, there is a plethora of epidemiological research that points to the preventive and anti-inflammatory advantages of greater fruit and vegetable diet.
When considering the comorbid diseases and inflammatory response mechanisms that are activated by CKD, “the phytochemicals and antioxidants in fruits and vegetables are extremely critical to what our patients require,” adds Rodriguez. “The healthier and more natural approach is to load up on fruits and veggies.”
4. A Condition Known as Metabolic Acidosis
Because of the kidney’s diminished capacity to filter and remove acids via urine, metabolic acidosis, or an excess of acids in the blood, may be both a cause and an effect of CKD. An excessive amount of acid in the body’s fluids may cause or exacerbate a variety of health problems, including brittle bones, insulin resistance, squandering of muscle protein and energy, and the progression of kidney disease.
According to Rodriguez, the oxidation of organic sulfur in amino acids like methionine and cysteine results in sulfate, which promotes acid formation. Natural alkaline precursors like citrate and malate may be found in plant-based Kidney Diets including fruits, vegetables, and legumes, and can be transformed into serum bicarbonate, which can serve as a buffer.
Rodriguez contends that a diet rich in alkaline foods may be just as beneficial as oral alkali medicines while also delivering the advantages of fiber, antioxidants, and phytonutrients, which are typically absent from the conventional or historical CKD diet.
Metabolic acidosis may be treated and prevented with a Kidney Diet rich in fruits and vegetables, according to reviews published in 2013 and 2015. Researchers discovered that increasing fruit and vegetable consumption was just as beneficial as oral sodium bicarbonate in treating metabolic acidosis in persons with CKD stages 2, 3, and 4.
Rodriguez suggests that even if patients or clients aren’t ready to completely cut out animal-based proteins, they may still benefit from finding methods to add in more plant foods like fruits and vegetables. In additional approaches to the kidney diet, Cutting-edge research has uncovered promising new dietary interventions that can potentially slow the progression of kidney disease, presenting a ray of hope for patients worldwide.
5. Potassium and phosphorus’s bioavailability
Once upon a time, the cornerstone of the CKD Kidney Diet for persons in stages 3–5 of CKD and on dialysis was a strict prohibition of foods rich in phosphorus and potassium. Consequently approaches to the kidney diet, consumers cut down on their intake of plant-based diets. However, there is evidence that the phosphorus and potassium in plant diets are less accessible than those found in animal products.
Animal proteins, including meat, chicken, and fish, may have phosphorus and potassium additions, in a more accessible form, according to research published in 2018. Professionals are encouraged to think about the bioavailability of phosphorus sources as recommended by the revised KDOQI standards.
“When I speak to dietitians about getting CKD patients to eat more plant-based proteins, their main concerns are potassium and phosphorus,” adds Rodriguez. She adds that certain plant meals include phosphorus, but that this phosphorus is in the form of phytic acid, which is poorly absorbed by humans since we lack the enzyme phytase.
She suggests that the increased fiber content in plant Kidney Diets may limit the absorption of both phosphorus and potassium. Additionally approaches to the kidney diet, and recently discovered potassium binders may assist patients and clients maintain blood potassium levels within range while simultaneously consuming more plant foods.
Rodriguez says she constantly tells her patients and clients that processing methods like sprouting, fermenting, and boiling may make phosphorus more accessible. Rodriguez urges registered dietitian nutritionists to educate patients or clients about inorganic sources of phosphorus, which commonly are present in highly processed meals and drinks such as soda. The human body absorbs almost all of the phosphorus that is artificially (or inorganically) given to the Kidney Diet.
6. Learnings from RDN
Despite the astonishing prevalence of CKD and the promising potential of medical nutrition treatment to delay the development of the illness, only around 10% of persons with non-dialysis CKD are projected to ever visit an RDN. Barriers to MNT may include a lack of physician knowledge and referrals, plus RDN availability. Whatever the reason, RDNs may wish to consider advocating for the significance of the Kidney Diet for CKD whenever feasible.
Individuals may delay or forego medical nutrition treatment due to concerns about the financial commitment involved in consulting a dietician. Private practice registered dietitian nutritionists (RDNs) can help patients with chronic kidney disease (CKD) who are not on dialysis or who have had a kidney transplant within the past 36 months and be referred by their doctors by becoming Medicare providers, which pays for a limited number of appointments.
In the approaches to the kidney diet, There is a common misperception among patients and clients that a Kidney Diet rich in fresh produce and healthy grains may worsen their ailment. Provide the most recent research and details on the many positive effects of a plant-based Kidney Diet in counseling sessions with patients and clients. You should stress the significance of slow, steady improvements if your patients or customers are not yet prepared to make drastic ones.
Rodriguez argues that “even minor objectives, even baby steps,” may have a big effect on health outcomes. Just switching to plant-based alternatives for a few weekly meals may have a significant impact.
Given the increasing number of diseases arising from kidney issues, it is critical that you take care of your kidneys. While there are several ways of doing this, implementing a good diet plan is certainly an easier one. We hope this blog “New Approaches to the Kidney Diet” helps you secure a good diet plan. To read more interesting content, keep visiting our website!
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