Chronic Kidney Disease and Diet


Diet for the Chronic Kidney Disease is bit complicated but still it can be managed by following proper diet. Kidney disease can be categorized depending on the GFR (Glomerular Filtration Rate, a measure of your level of kidney function) and kidney damage. There are 5 stages of Chronic Kidney Disease (CKD) starting from CKD stage 1 to stage 5. Treatment including medical and nutritional plan also varies depending on the stages of kidney disease.

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Why Nutrition is important for CKD

Nutrition requirement varies from individual to individual. Though diet is very much important for those individuals who are on medication or not as because,

  • To get energy
  • To maintain the healthy weight
  • To prevent from infections
  • To maintain blood parameters

Nutrients and CKD

Those individuals having CKD should follow a Renal diet. But the diet is always individualized in terms of calorie requirement, protein requirement and micro nutrient requirements.


 Protein helps us to build muscle, repair tissue and fight against infections. Protein intake for kidney disease patients depends on the muscle mass and stage of kidney disease. Those who are undergoing dialysis require more protein because dialyses filter out wastes from blood, it also removes proteins and due to that muscle starts to break down. This break down of muscle can make the individual fatigue and make them more prone to infections.

Protein is divided into two categories. One is first class and the other one is second class. First class proteins are generally absorbed easily in the body compared to second class proteins. Though a combination of protein is recommended for these patients of course considering the blood reports.


First class protein source includes Egg, Chicken, Fish, Red meat.

Second class protein includes Milk and milk products, Soya, Tofu, Beans, Legumes and Pulses etc.


Sodium affects blood pressure & water balance in the body. If individuals suffering from CKD, Sodium & Fluid buildup in the body, which can lead to swelling

Sodium should always restrict from diet regime for those individuals suffering from kidney disease.

Sources: All packaged food including Ketchup, Soy sauce, Processed meat, Salted snacks including chips or namkeens, Papad, Pickle etc.

Always Read food label before using it.


Potassium rich diet is always restricted for an individual with CKD. A normal kidney removes potassium through urination. Kidney’s that are not functioning properly cannot remove potassium in the urine, so it builds up in the blood. High potassium can cause irregular heartbeat & can even cause heart to stop working.

Sources: Banana, Fruits and fruit juices, Tender coconut water, Ragi, Green leafy vegetables except Fenugreek leaves, Tomato, Potato etc


 Person with kidney disease may not be able to remove the excess Phosphorus from the blood. For a safer side food high in Phosphorus can be restricted. A high level of Phosphorus in the blood can cause Calcium to build up in the blood vessels, heart joints, muscles and skin which can lead to poor blood circulation, bone pain and skin ulcers.

Sources: Dairy product including Milk, Cheese, Yogurt, Curd; Nuts; Dried beans; Beverages like Cocoa, Beer & Soft drink etc.

Fluids: Depending on the Chronic kidney disease stages and urine output fluid intake can be calculated. To control intake individual should

Not drink more than the Doctor’s advice. Fluid intake can be calculated including Tea, Coffee, Sambar, Rasam etc.

Individualized diet plan should help the individual to maintain the optimal nutrition. Doctor and Dietitian plan the treatment depends on the condition and it varies person to person.

Always refer to your personalized meal plan prescribed by your Dietitian.

About the Author

IMG-20191213-WA0028Ms. Soumita Biswas, Chief Nutritionist, Aster RV Hospital

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