Hey…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!
- Red Bell Peppers – chock full ‘o vitamins A, C, and B6 and the antioxidant lycopene with low levels of potassium…heart healthy too.
- Garlic – contains anti-inflammatories and antioxidant qualities…just remember to follow it up with a mint…just sayin’.
- Onions – 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!
- Apples – keep the doc away by eating these spheres of goodness that contain fiber, anti-inflammatories and which help reduce cholesterol.
- 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 – 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 – 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. 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
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.