Optimizing nutrition in chronic kidney disease is essential to improve patients’ quality of life and thus prevent disease progression. In recent years there has been a trend change in terms of nutritional intake which is good to know, even if each case will always have to be analyzed separately.
An adequate diet can serve to enhance the effects of the pharmacology or to ease the lifestyle that accompanies many chronic diseases. With an optimal guideline, a situation of well-being will be achieved.
Proteins in chronic kidney disease
One of the nutrients that is looked at with a magnifying glass in the context of chronic kidney disease is protein. Until very recently, a significant reduction in its consumption was recommended to prevent the progression of the disease and to reduce the workload of the kidneys. However, Current trends favor the replacement of a part of the protein of animal origin with another of plant origin.
In this way, internal protein catabolism can be prevented, which in the medium term would result in sarcopenia. This pathology is harmful to the body and usually worsens the prognosis of other morbidities. To avoid this, it is essential to meet protein needs throughout the day, as evidenced by a research published in the journal International biomedical research.
It is true that proteins of animal origin have a higher biological value and concentrate all the essential amino acids. However, Greens are easier to digest, putting less strain on the kidneys and liver. This wouldn’t be relevant in the context of healthy people, but when there’s a pathology in one of the filtering organs, it could make a difference.
Optimizing your diet to reduce inflammation
People who have developed chronic kidney disease tend to have increased levels of systemic inflammation. This causes other systems to start failing to function, leading to comorbidity.
In fact, the prevalence of type 2 diabetes or metabolic syndrome in these people is high. To avoid this situation, some dietary strategies will need to be implemented.
The first is to increase the consumption of vegetables. Both fruit and vegetables are a source of phytochemicals, elements with powerful antioxidant and anti-inflammatory action.
They are able to neutralize the formation of free radicals and their subsequent accumulation in the tissues, which is associated with a decrease in the risk of developing other pathologies. This is confirmed by A study published in European Journal of Medicinal Chemistry.
In general terms, It is convenient to favor the intake of vegetables over fruit. The latter contain some simple sugars that may not be beneficial if consumed in large quantities or if there are underlying diseases. This does not mean that they cannot be included in the guideline, but that more importance should be given to other groups of vegetables, such as cruciferous vegetables.
Beware of metabolic acidosis
In the context of chronic kidney disease, a situation known as metabolic acidosisderived from the inability of the kidneys to filter excretory products and metabolites. The odds increase when the dietary pattern has many edibles of animal origin, as acid synthesis increases, due to the sulfur present in amino acids such as methionine and cysteine.
For this reason, in this type of situation, it will be important to favor the intake of foods of plant origin, as we have already mentioned. This does not mean that meat, dairy products and eggs cannot appear, but that their role must be reduced.
Otherwise, acidosis could develop resulting in loss of calcium through the urine. The consequence is osteoporosis.
Phosphorus and potassium content of the diet
Two of the key micronutrients in the management of chronic kidney disease are phosphorus and potassium; especially during dialysis. There has always been a tendency to limit its intake in these patients.. However, more recent research suggests that the phosphorus and potassium found in plant-based foods are not overly bioavailable, in part due to the presence of fiber.
The latter substance increases the volume of the faecal bolus and facilitates its motility, but also acts as a antinutrient. On the other hand, it is responsible for serving as an energy substrate for the bacteria that inhabit the digestive tract and make up the microbiota.
The latter is positive, as is the maintenance of the density and diversity of microorganisms in the intestine has associated with better overall health.
What seems clear is the need for fiber in the regimen of patients with chronic kidney disease is another reason for the frequent inclusion of vegetables. At the same time, it is convenient to carry out analyzes from time to time to verify that the nutrient levels are adequate.
It is possible to optimize nutrition in chronic kidney disease
Currently, approximately 9% of the world’s adult population suffers from chronic kidney disease. In this sense it is essential to know how to optimize the diet to facilitate the management of the disease.
Also to prevent its progression. Otherwise, dialysis may be required on a regular basis or the kidneys would also stop workingconsidered high risk.
That doesn’t mean you need to focus on other lifestyle habits as well. It is important to prevent overweight and obesity to avoid situations that would further aggravate inflammation in the internal environment.
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