Category Archives: Renal Disease

15 Foods for Healthy Kidneys

kidneyHey…HEY!  It’s us, your hard-working kidneys and yeah, we know it’s been a while since we talked…like in forever, but we thought it was time to give you some advice about what types of food to eat in order to keep us filtering out the trash you put into our body (it ain’t just your body, you know).

It’s not easy processing 50 gallons of blood (yes, 50!) and filtering out 2 quarts of waste and extra water on a daily basis…we then send that waste to your bladder on its way to the great beyond.  As your body’s filtration system, we also help regulate the levels of sodium, phosphorus and potassium levels in your blood, so yeah, we’re fairly important internal organs that are often forgotten about…hence this little chat.

Yeah, we’re forgotten about until we begin to malfunction.  Yes, diabetes and high blood pressure can cause us serious problems, but many times our renal functions are compromised in a silent and slow process that eventually leads to chronic kidney disease which, often times, can be prevented by eating a balanced and healthy diet.  Ooops, almost forgot an important fact…chronic kidney disease can’t be cured once it’s taken hold.  You can only hope to prolong our “lives” as long as possible through treatment and diet.  Yeah, we suppose, God forbid, a kidney transplant is an option, but we’d both like to stay right where we’re at, thank you very much.

So where were we? …Oh yeah, kidney friendly foods out there that can prevent and/or treat kidney disease.  It’s all about self-preservation you know.  These foods generally contain moderate levels of protein and potassium, low levels of sodium, cholesterol, and fat and high levels of vitamins, antioxidants and anti-inflammatories…yes, you guessed correctly, mostly fresh fruits and vegetables…you don’t need a PhD in nutrition to figure this stuff out!

  1. red-pepper-happyRed Bell Peppers – chock full ‘o vitamins A, C, and B6 and the antioxidant lycopene with low levels of potassium…heart healthy too.cauliflower-happy
  2. Garlic – contains anti-inflammatories and antioxidant qualities…just remember to follow it up with a mint…just sayin’.
  3. onion-winkOnions – wait, garlic AND onions…keep your distance.  Low in potassium, full of flavonoids, the antioxidant quercetin and chromium…cry us a river as you peel, but get us some onions!
  4. Apples – keep the doc away by eating these spheres of goodness that contain fiber, anti-inflammatories and which help reduce cholesterol.
  5. Through 9.  Berries – Think cran, blue, ras, and straw…most contain a ton of vitamin C, manganese, antioxidants, fiber and cranberries help prevent urinary tract infections.

10.cherries Cherries – are not the pits, they just contain them as well as phytochemicals which help
       reduce inflammation and antioxidants.
11. Egg Whites – OK, so get an egg separator already, but put in the work to get the amino acids and moderate amount of protein without the cholesterol and phosphorous
present in the yolks.
12. fish-cartoonFish – another good source of protein along with omega 3 fatty acids and fish is known
       to reduce LDL levels (the bad cholesterol) and raise HDL levels.
13. Kale – has become so popular that it’s now used as a name.  It’s also contains our good
       friends vitamin A and C, as well as iron and anti-inflammatories.
14. Olive Oil – think of Popeye’s board-like love interest as you cook with this healthy oil
       that contains oleic acid and polyphenols.
15.mushroom-30 Mushrooms – funny, we remember overhearing numerous men claim they were often
       treated like mushrooms by their significant other…kept in the dark and fed a lot of…
shall we say solid human waste product.  Anyway, they’re low in fat, calories, and
cholesterol and provide us with vitamin D, selenium and just the right amount of
potassium. 

So, to recap, just remember to eat some of these foods on a daily basis and we’ll provide you with our valuable filtration services for years to come…nice talk.

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Tips to Help You Through the Holidays on a Renal Diet

What’s for dinner? It’s something everyone who plans to attend a party, family gathering, or night out at a restaurant during the holidays wants to know. But if it’s the usual fare, a lot of the food might be off limits if you have renal disease. Then what? No, you don’t have to stay home while everyone else has a good time. You just need to have a plan. Here are a few things to keep in mind to help you through the holidays on a renal diet.

Two Mature Female Friends Talking In Kitchen TogetherTalk to the Cook

If you’re attending a private holiday party or family gathering where food will be served, talk to the cook ahead of time. A good host and cook will want to know if you or any other guests have special dietary needs. But they won’t know what those are unless you let them know.

Provide some suggestions about foods suitable for those with renal disease, or offer to bring a dish you can eat like something from the Renal Meals Menu. Just ask. You’ll find that most people are willing to accommodate your special diet.

If you’ll be eating out at a restaurant, plan ahead by calling the restaurant or looking at the menu online for renal-friendly items on the menu.

Eat Turkey

cured-meatsNo not all turkey is created equal. But it’s a common main dish served at holiday dinners. Find out if a skinless, low-sodium version is available. Or prepare your own by limiting salt and sodium-based marinades to season the turkey. If you don’t have the time or inclination to prepare a turkey, check out the turkey-based dishes available from our selection of renal-friendly meals. And steer clear of cured meats like sausage, bacon, and canned meats, all high in sodium.

Choose Low-Potassium Fruits and Veggies

Your best source of nutrients when you have renal disease is fruits and vegetables. You’ll find lots variations of fruits and veggies served at home, parties, and restaurants during the holidays. But you can just eat any. Steer clear of veggies high in potassium like bananas and prunes. Look for ways to include low-potassium fruits and veggies in your diet like bell peppers, onions, green beans, carrots, onions, and mushrooms. You’ll find lots of renal-friendly meals with fresh vegetables at MagicKitchen.com like Chicken Marsala with Rice, and Peas, and Carrots, or try the Breaded Fish Wedge with Green Beans and Cauliflower.

Do Dessert Right

Dessert in any form isn’t exactly healthy. But there’s lot of it around during the holidays. But just because you have renal disease, doesn’t mean you can’t enjoy a little. Skip popular desserts like ice cream and chocolate, because both are high in potassium and protein. Instead, go with something like pumpkin pie topped with whipped cream to keep your renal diet on track.

fluidsWatch Your Fluids

You already know the rules about fluids when you have renal disease. You need to limit the amount of fluid you consume from food and drinks to prevent your kidneys from developing a problems. Many health professionals suggest that those with renal disease should not drink alcohol, and it’s a good idea to follow. Instead limit the amount of fluid you drink to water or juice.

Be Smart

When you have renal disease, limit the amount of sodium, potassium, phosphorus, protein, and fluids you consume. Make eating this way a habit, and stay on top of it during the holidays. Eating the right foods, and avoiding others, will help you manage renal disease. Be sure to get enough sleep (7 to 8 hours is best), stay warm, and do everything you can to avoid catching a cold, which can aggravate symptoms associated with renal disease.

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Summer Precautions for People with Kidney Disease

Turn on the TV mid-summer, and there’s a good chance hot weather is in the forecast. It’s great for swimming, picnics, and backyard barbecues. But if you have renal disease, you’ve got to take some precautions to protect your health from the heat wave.

Warmer weather means you’re more likely to sweat. Without adequate fluids, it’s also easier to become dehydrated when it’s hot. And that can take a toll on kidney function. However, with a little planning you can weather the heat wave and stay healthy. Here are some things you can do:

Chile con Carne with peas and carrots. A MagicKitchen.com renal meal
Chile con Carne with peas and carrots. A MagicKitchen.com renal meal

Eat healthy foods
It’s one of the most important things you can do when you have renal disease. You need to follow a healthy diet that’s low in sodium, potassium, phosphorous, and protein. At the same time, you need all the vitamins and nutrients you can get for best health. But it doesn’t have to be hard. At MagicKitchen.com, we’ve created 26 different entrees for breakfast, lunch, and dinner designed specifically for people with renal disease. You’ll enjoy choices like Cheese Omelet, Shrimp & Vegetable Linguine, or Stuffed Peppers. Every meal is made from fresh ingredients, flash frozen, and delivered right to your door.

Exercise outdoors
Pull back the shades so you can see the sun. Then make a plan to get outside for a little exercise. Try taking a walk in the park. A little exercise will help strengthen your heart, lungs, and muscles. And 10 to 15 minutes in the sun without sunscreen helps your skin produce vitamin D your body needs for good pretty-woman-812878__180health. After that, cover up, apply sunscreen, or spend a little more time outside in the shade.

Protect your eyes

When you head out the door to soak up some summer sun, be sure to protect your eyes. The sun’s ultraviolet rays can not only damage your skin, they can also harm your vision. Much like using sunscreen to protect your skin (sunscreen with an SPF rating of 15 or higher is best), your eyes also need to be protected. When you’re in the sun, wear sunglasses designed to block out ultraviolet rays.

If you plan to go swimming…

maldives-666118__180If your dialysis treatments are delivered via a vascular access, you may be wondering if you can go swimming. You can, but you have to take precautions to protect the access from infection with a protective dressing. If you’re not sure how to do this, talk to your doctor. You’ll also want to avoid swimming in ponds, lakes, and rivers. These places are more likely to harbor bacteria that can lead to an infection. So where can you swim? Chlorinated pools or the ocean.

Long summer days with plenty of daylight and warmer temperatures can be enjoyable. Make a plan to protect your health, enjoy renal-friendly meals, and get outside.

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Kidney Patients, Protect Your Heart

care-736257_640When dialysis is part of your treatment plan to manage failing kidneys, exercise, nutrition, and lifestyle habits all play a part in maintaining your health and quality of life.

One important risk factor to recognize is high blood pressure. It’s one of the common causes of chronic kidney disease. A blood pressure reading of less than 120/80 is considered normal. If it’s higher than that, you have an increased risk for developing heart disease and kidney disease.

But it doesn’t have to be that way. Researchers at Emory University School of Medicine have found that controlling blood pressure using a combination of medication and exercise can prevent heart disease and protect the kidneys. Did you know heart disease is the leading cause of death in the United States and 1 in 3 adults has high blood pressure? These are just two reasons an estimated 31 million people in the United States have chronic kidney disease and about 400,000 require regular dialysis treatments to do the work their kidney’s can’t.

Turkey Noodles
Turkey Noodles

Taking medications to protect your heart recommended by your doctor is an important part of protecting your kidneys when you’re on dialysis. Regular exercise, at least 30 minutes a day is ideal, to strengthen your heart, lungs, and muscles. Eating a healthy diet also plays a big part in protecting your health and managing kidney disease.

Medical professionals recommend dialysis patients eat a healthy diet high in protein. At MagicKitchen.com, we’ve created a complete collection of Dialysis-Friendly meals that can help protect your heart and eat healthy. You’ll enjoy meals like Ground Turkey with Creamy Noodes & Zucchini Onion Saute, Zesty Orange Chicken Tenders with corn, peppers, and mixed greens, and Baked Tilapia, Brown Rice & Minted Carrots.

Take your medications. Stick to your dialysis schedule. Exercise regularly, and eat healthy. It’s the best way to protect your heart. And it’s the best recipe for managing kidney disease when you’re on dialysis.

If you want the technical, doctor’s explanation, see this video!

Here are some other articles you might enjoy:

Certain Popular Southern Foods Bad for Kidneys

Protect Against Type 2 Diabetes and Enjoy It!

National Kidney Foundation Launches ‘My Food Coach’ Portal

Three Foods That Can Boost Renal Function

3 Ways to Protect Your Bones When You Have Kidney Disease

Oral Medicine Normalizes Blood Potassium

Stem Cell Research Promising for Kidney Disease

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Kidney Disease- Picking the Right Foods

Managing your health when you have renal disease means you’ll need to pay close attention to your diet. The National Institutes of Health recommends limiting fluids, eating a low-protein diet, limiting salt, potassium, phosphorus and electrolytes, and consuming enough calories to maintain a healthy weight.

Research shows that when you have renal disease, controlling your diet can help maintain existing kidney function and limit the progression of the disease that could lead to the need for dialysis.

But armed with this information, what foods should you pick to include in your diet? Foods high in antioxidants that prevent inflammation and further kidney damage. Here’s a few you should sink your teeth into:

Sweet Peppers
Red and green bell peppers are low in potassium, and contain high levels of antioxidants like vitamin C and vitamin A. They’re also a good source of folic acid and fiber. And you’ll find bell peppers in MagicKitchen.com meals like Chipotle Meatloaf, Lasagna with Meat Sauce, and Stuffed Peppers.

sweet-sour-chicken-87003Cruciferous Vegetables

These are vegetables like cabbage, cauliflower, and broccoli, which are good sources of antioxidants and other nutrients found to help prevent cell damage linked to renal disease. Mashed cauliflower works well as a healthy substitute for mashed potatoes for people with renal disease. MagicKitchen.com meals with cruciferous vegetables to add to your meal plan include options like the Breaded Fish Wedge with green beans and cauliflower, Beef Meatballs with Rice & Gravy, peas, carrots and cauliflower, and Meatloaf & Tomato Sauce with Brown Rice & Broccoli, Peas & Corn.

Onions
Onions are another good vegetable to include in your diet when you have renal disease. They contain high levels of flavonoids and antioxidants and are low in potassium. Onions also contain a mineral called chromium, which helps metabolize carbohydrates, fats, and proteins, and is important for those with renal disease. Some of our MagicKitchen.com meals made with onions include Sweet and Sour Chicken with Zucchini & Onion Saute, Beef Lasagna with Zucchini & Onion Saute, and Chipotle Meatloaf with green beans, onions, peppers, and southwest potatoes.

These are just a few of the foods you should include in your diet to manage renal disease. For more information about diet and renal disease, talk to your doctor and take a look at the nutrition recommendations from the National Kidney Foundation.

Please see the video below for more information!

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