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Education & Diet

Introduction

Your kidneys have many life sustaining functions. They are involved in blood pressure control, maintaining electrolyte balance (sodium, potassium, phosphorous, calcium, etc), removing excess fluid from your body and clearing acids and medications from your blood.The kidneys have important hormonal functions as well, and are involved in the control of red blood cell and vitamin D production. 

Patients with chronic kidney disease often do not feel badly until their kidneys have almost completely failed. 

Your primary care doctor will determine if you have kidney disease based on blood work, urine studies and/or imaging of the abdomen. You may be referred to a kidney doctor (nephrologist) for any of the above issues or to help care for kidney stones, rare autoimmune or genetic diseases of the kidney.

Diet

Patients with chronic kidney disease, kidney stones and/or high blood pressure have special dietary needs. 

As the kidneys begin to fail, the body has more difficulty balancing potassium, phosphorous, sodium (salt) and water. High potassium can be dangerous for the heart and muscles and in most cases, patients with chronic kidney disease should follow a low potassium diet. High phosphorous levels can lead to bone loss and calcification of the arteries which can increase the risk of cardiovascular disease. A high sodium (salt) diet can worsen high blood pressure and lead to fluid overload. Patients with chronic kidney disease and swelling, congestive heart failure and cirrhosis should limit their fluid intake. 

Please consult a physician prior to starting a new diet.

Low potassium diet: Click Here 

Low sodium diet: Click Here 

Naional Kidney Foundation Diet and Nutrition Link: Click Here