Superfoods And The Renal Diet
Over the last two decades there have been a lot of changes to the Irish diet, and many new foods have become popular. There has been a lot of advertising in recent years about the reported health benefits of these new foods, and also of so called super foods. As Renal dietitians we are frequently asked whether these foods are suitable for people on Renal Diets, and if there is actually any benefit to be got from them.
Below I have compiled a list of some of these new foods, what their benefit is, and whether they are suitable for those on a renal diet or not.Reported Health Benefit:
Blueberries are reported to help prevent the development of cancer, cardiovascular disease and age-related illnesses through their anti-oxidant properties.
Is this True?
At present there is no evidence that blueberries are any more beneficial than any other berries or fruit in terms of cancer and cardiovascular disease prevention. Most of the studies reporting their health benefits have only been done in a laboratory setting and not done in humans.
They are still beneficial for other reasons as they provide important vitamins, minerals and fibre to the diet, however they are no different to any other fruit in this respect.
Are they Allowed on a Renal Diet:
Get To Know Your Spices
Keep the flavor while lowering the salt content by relying on home-cooked meals over takeout. More than 70% of the sodium we eat comes from processed, prepackaged, and restaurant foods, according to the American Heart Association. At home, replace the salt in your recipes with dried herbs and seasonings such as dill, garlic powder, chili pepper, and oregano. Want even more zing? Flavored vinegars can pack a punch, as can sodium- and potassium-free seasoning mixes.
May Have Beneficial Effects On Metabolic Health
Some studies suggest that eating quinoa could benefit certain aspects of health.
A 2020 study in 40 older adults had participants eat 0.5 ounces of quinoa flour biscuits daily for 28 days.
- triglyceride levels
A 2017 study that included 50 people with excess weight or obesity had participants consume 1.8 ounces of quinoa daily for 12 weeks.
Those who ate the quinoa had significant reductions in triglyceride levels compared with the control group and a group that consumed 0.88 ounces of quinoa per day .
Even though these results suggest that quinoa has a positive effect on metabolic health, its your diet and lifestyle as a whole that matter most when it comes to decreasing your risk of disease.
Following a dietary pattern rich in nutritious foods like quinoa, vegetables, fruits, fish, and beans is a smart way to protect your health and reduce disease risk factors, like high blood lipid levels and high blood sugar levels.
When you enjoy it as part of a well-rounded diet, quinoa can help support overall health and may improve certain disease risk factors, like high blood lipid levels.
While its not directly a health benefit, the fact that quinoa is very easy to incorporate into your diet is still important.
Quinoa is also tasty and goes well with many foods.
Depending on the type of quinoa, it can be important to rinse it with water before you cook it to get rid of saponins. These are found naturally on the outer layer and can have a bitter flavor.
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Top 10 Low Potassium Cereals
Cereal can be a very healthy part of a kidney friendly diet! But, depending on your lab values, some cereals may be better for your kidneys. Learn more about the best low potassium cereal for your kidneys.
*Please note that this post contains clearly identified affiliate links. If you click on these links and choose to make a purchase, I may receive a commission .
Potatoes And Sweet Potatoes
Potatoes and sweet potatoes are potassium-rich vegetables.
Just one medium-sized baked potato contains 610 mg of potassium, whereas one average-sized baked sweet potato contains 541 mg of potassium .
Fortunately, some high potassium foods, including potatoes and sweet potatoes, can be soaked or leached to reduce their potassium contents.
Cutting potatoes into small, thin pieces and boiling them for at least 10 minutes can reduce the potassium content by about 50% .
Potatoes that are soaked in water for at least 4 hours before cooking are proven to have an even lower potassium content than those not soaked before cooking .
This method is known as potassium leaching or the double-cook method.
Although double cooking potatoes lowers the potassium content, its important to remember that their potassium content isnt eliminated by this method.
Considerable amounts of potassium can still be present in double-cooked potatoes, so its best to practice portion control to keep potassium levels in check.
Potatoes and sweet potatoes are high potassium vegetables. Boiling or double cooking potatoes can decrease their potassium content by about 50%.
Tomatoes are another high potassium fruit that may not fit the guidelines of a renal diet.
They can be served raw or stewed and are often used to make sauces.
Just 1 cup of tomato sauce can contain upwards of 900 mg of potassium .
Unfortunately for those on a renal diet, tomatoes are commonly used in many dishes.
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Including Whole Grains In A Kidney Diet
What are whole grains?
Youve probably heard of whole grains, but what are they really? They are unprocessed grains with the endosperm, bran and germ left intact. They are rich in fiber, B vitamins, iron, magnesium and selenium. Compared to non-enriched refined grains, whole grains have more potassium and phosphorus. The amount of these minerals and the amount of protein varies among different whole grains.
There are numerous benefits to eating whole grains. Improved digestive health, lower cholesterol with decreased risk for heart disease and stroke, and cancer prevention have been linked to higher fiber intake, a result of eating whole grains.
Are whole grains acceptable for a kidney diet?
In the past, whole grains were discouraged in kidney diet due to the higher potassium and phosphorus content. Today, dietitians are changing advice on whole grains. Why is this happening? Increased use of prepared and packaged foods, and eating out more often, has greatly increased sodium, potassium and phosphorus intakemostly due to food additives. The nutritional and health benefits of food are as important as the mineral content. Its important to talk with your dietitian who can tell you how much of which whole grains will fit into your individualized kidney diet.
What are the best whole grain choices?
Whole grains vary in the amounts of phosphorus and potassium.
Whole grains with lower potassium and phosphorus content:
Whole grains with higher potassium and phosphorus content :
How Oats Can Be Bad For Kidney Disease
A person suffering from chronic kidney disease should be careful while eating a highly processed and packaged type of oats. These may contain high levels of potassium and phosphorus that could put the kidneys of a CKD patient under stress.
A person suffering from stage 3 or 4 chronic kidney disease should try to avoid or limit the processed versions of oats and choose their oats in more of a natural form such as whole oats or steel-cut oats to avoid putting any additional burden on their kidneys.
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How Much Potassium Is In A Cup Of Quinoa
One cup of quinoa contains a potassium amount of 318mg.
If you are willing to consume one cup of quinoa, the amount of potassium you will assume will be pretty high. It is a general rule to consider foods rich in potassium when they are higher than 200mg.
If you are following a specific diet, such as a low potassium diet, renal dieticians usually suggest consuming less than 200 mg of potassium for a meal. Anyway, it is important to consider that the amount of potassium to integrate will depend upon your health condition.
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- 1 cup low-sodium vegetable stock
- 1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
- 1/2 cup dried cranberries
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How To Eat Quinoa
The quinoa seeds are naturally covered by a saponin residue that is bitter to the palate. This is one defense mechanism the plant has to fend off the occasional passing critter that wants a snack. While commercial cultivation processes remove much of the saponin that coats the seed, it is still a good idea to rinse the seeds in cold water to make sure the process is complete. However, there are many brands that are pre-rinsed. You can use your own judgment.
Once you have the quinoa rinsed, bring a pot of one part quinoa and two parts water to a boil, cover, and simmer slowly for fifteen minutes, or until the the water is absorbed and the quinoa is tender. If you want to keep more of the natural nutty flavor, you can dry roast the seeds before cooking them. Put the quinoa in a skillet over medium heat and toss, just until the quinoa becomes fragrant.
Now you have a multitude of options for preparing your quinoa. Whether you like it hot or cold, you can put it into a salad or in a soup. You can also form your cooked quinoa into patties with a variety of ingredients. Go ahead and add cooked quinoa to your favorite pancake or muffin recipe for a brand-new take on healthy eating.
Health Benefits Of Quinoa Uses And Its Side Effects
Quinoa is a nutrient rich food and has many health benefits. Right from controlling weight and acting as a great substitute for protein and in gluten-free diets. Quinoa good for your hair, it also help prevent gallstones, kidney stones, diabetes, osteoporosis, and cancer. You can also add quinoa in your weight loss diet. It also protects many organs in the body and is rich in antioxidants and low in fat.
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A Simple Introduction To Quinoa
This is a food that is both old and new as an ancient staple and a rediscovered foodie favorite. If you have noticed quinoa at all, you know what everyone is saying about it. Can it be that quinoa is the perfect food for you and your family? Could quinoa be the one new ingredient you try this year that changes the way you cook? Quinoa is all that and a powerhouse of nutrition, flavor and texture. Let’s take a brief look at this super-food and why it is quickly becoming all the rage.
Quinoa Lectins: Why Quinoa Is Not Part Of A Healthy Diet
by Gundry MD Team | Sep 25, 2020 | Comments
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Quinoa has been touted for a while now as a superfood. But the truth is quinoa is filled with dangerous lectins and is far from super especially when it comes to supporting your health.
Dietary lectins can be found in all sorts of so-called health foods. Youll find lectins in everything from raw kidney beans to white rice, from wheat germ to processed foods like sourdough bread. Even your favorite dairy products can contain lectins if the animals that produce the milk you drink consume lectin-rich feed. And the best thing to do when you come across lectin-rich foods like quinoa is to avoid them.
Of course, many have touted pseudo-grains like buckwheat and quinoa for their health benefits, but you should know its really not healthy given the lectins in quinoa.
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Quinoa Good For Digestion
Of the 7 grams of fiber available in 100 grams of quinoa, most of it is insoluble. Insoluble fiber is essential to the human body as it stimulates healthy digestion. Not only does it facilitate healthy and regular bowel movement, it also treats and prevents other gastrointestinal symptoms such as constipation, gas, flatulence, and bloatingpain.
May Promote Gut Health
One cup of sliced apricots provides 3.3 grams of fiber, which is 8.6% and 13.2% of the DV for men and women, respectively .
Apricots are particularly high in soluble fiber, which is important for maintaining healthy blood sugar and cholesterol levels .
Furthermore, fiber delays the movement of food through your digestive tract and feeds your beneficial gut bacteria. A healthier gut microbiome is linked to a lower risk of obesity .
While a single apricot holds only 0.7 grams of fiber, its easy to eat a few in one sitting .
Summary Apricots are a good source of soluble fiber, which feeds your healthy gut bacteria and may boost digestive health.
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Is Brown Rice Bad For The Kidneys
Brown rice is high in phosphorus and potassium and will likely need to be portion controlled or restricted as part of a kidney diet.
Why are whole grains good for the kidneys?
Improved digestive health, lower cholesterol with a reduced risk of heart disease and stroke, and cancer prevention have been linked to increased fiber intake, a result of eating whole grains. Are Whole Grains OK for a Kidney Diet? In the past, whole grains were discouraged as a kidney diet due to their higher potassium and phosphorus content.
What foods are good for kidney dialysis patients?
Consider whole grains with protein. Incorporating some of the highest protein grains can help people on dialysis meet their protein goals. Whole grains containing protein include amaranth, millet, quinoa, teff and some whole wheat pasta.
What kind of bread to eat if you have kidney disease?
Choosing the right bread can be confusing for people with kidney disease. Often, for healthy people, whole wheat bread is generally recommended over refined white flour bread. Whole wheat bread may be a more nutritious choice, mainly due to its higher fiber content.
What foods should you avoid if you have kidney disease?
Higher In Fiber Than Many Grains
Another important benefit of quinoa is its high fiber content.
A 1-cup serving of cooked quinoa contains 5.18 grams of fiber. Thats about 18% of the current 28-gram DV .
Quinoa contains more fiber than several other popular grains, like brown rice.
For example, a 1-cup serving of cooked brown rice contains 3.51 grams of fiber, which is 1.67 grams less than the same serving size of quinoa .
Adding fiber-rich foods like quinoa into your diet can help support your digestive health by promoting regular bowel movements and fueling beneficial bacteria in your gut .
Plus, eating a high fiber diet can support a body weight thats healthy for you. Fiber helps promote feelings of fullness. Pairing high fiber foods like quinoa with high protein foods can help you feel full and may help keep your portion sizes in check .
Quinoa is high in fiber, a nutrient thats important for health. Adding more fiber-rich foods into your diet can help support gut health, body weight maintenance, and more.
Quinoa is often referred to as a complete protein. This is because it contains all nine of the essential amino acids that your body cant make on its own.
However, experts argue that quinoa should not be considered a complete protein because it contains low amounts of certain amino acids, like lysine .
For this reason, experts have suggested that quinoa be considered a nearly complete protein, not a complete protein .
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Take Care Of Your Heart
Heart-healthy foods help keep fat from accumulating in your heart, blood vessels, and kidneys. Incorporate the following tips for a more heart-healthy diet:
- Skip deep-fried foods in favor of those that are baked, grilled, roasted, or stir-fried.
- Cook with olive oil instead of butter.
- Limit saturated and trans fats.
Some good choices are:
- poultry with the skin removed
- lean cuts of meat with the fat removed
If kidney function continues to decline, your doctor will make personalized dietary recommendations. Kidney disease can cause phosphorus to build up in your blood, so you might be advised to choose foods that are lower in phosphorus. These include:
- fresh fruits and vegetables
- bread, pasta, and rice
- rice- and corn-based cereal
Phosphorus may be added to packaged food and deli meats, as well as fresh meat and poultry, so be sure to read labels.
Poorly functioning kidneys can also lead to a potassium buildup. Lower-potassium foods include:
- apples and peaches
- white bread, white rice, and pasta
Some higher-potassium foods are:
- salt substitutes
- whole-wheat bread and pasta
Talk to your doctor about your diet. It might also be helpful to consult with a dietitian.
Why Are Whole Grains Allowed Now
Allow me to explain
Whole grains are higher in phosphorus than processed grains. However, the phosphorus in whole grains are bound to a molecule called phytate. In order for the phosphorus to be released from the phytate bond, an enzyme called phytase is needed. Without the phytase enzyme, there will be decreased absorption of phosphorus from the whole grain food.
The amount of phytase enzymes in whole grains gradually decreases with time, during milling of whole grains, and during food preparation. Some grains have very little to no phytase activity including oats and millet. Therefore, whole grains may have high phosphorus composition but the likelihood of absorbing that full amount of phosphorus is low. In fact, it is estimated that only 20-50% of the phosphorus consumed will be absorbed. For example, one cup of cooked oatmeal prepared in water has 180 mg of phosphorus. But due to the low amount of phytase enzymes found in oats, only 36-90 mg would actually be absorbed into the bloodstream. Oatmeal lovers rejoice!
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