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Undergoing Dialysis - What Should Be Your Diet?

Written and reviewed by
Dr. Yogesh Kumar Chhabra 88% (36 ratings)
MBBS, MD - General Medicine, DM - Nephrology, DNB (Nephrology)
Nephrologist, Delhi  •  14 years experience
Undergoing Dialysis - What Should Be Your Diet?

Every organ is important for the human body to perform its functions normally. Kidneys too are vital and are responsible for removing the excess fluid and toxins from the body. If the kidney is not functioning properly, then the patient is advised to undergo dialysis treatment. In some cases, the patient is advised to undergo a transplant. However, in any case, the patient has to follow a healthy diet, for the treatment and the medicines to work positively.

Suitable diet during dialysis
Most of the patients are not aware of the diet prescribed for dialysis. Though it is always advised to consult a dietician before following any diet for the condition, it is also advisable to gain some knowledge about what the dietician might suggest, so that one is not clueless about the treatment. In a majority of the cases, food containing potassium, phosphorus, low-fat cholesterol, and sodium is included in the diet of these patients. However, these are prescribed in a limited amount and vary from patient to patient.

  1. Sodium: The sodium level of the dialysis patients needs to be controlled; and this can be done by eating food items that have a low sodium content, not more than 2,000 mg. Hence, the quantity of snacks, pudding, and chips are to be reduced in the diet chart.
  2. Potassium: The level of potassium also needs to be kept in check to avoid further deterioration of the kidney. Bread, certain vegetables, and grains contain a high amount of potassium. Moreover, various salt substitutes contain potassium chloride instead of sodium chloride. Large intake of these foods may affect the kidney permanently. Hence, these are majorly excluded from the diet. The patients are advised to include tomatoes and bananas in their diet, though not on a daily basis.
  3. Phosphorus: The patient is advised to avoid foods with high phosphorus. This includes milk and dairy products and grains. However, while on dialysis, meat is important as it gives enough protein despite being high on phosphorus. But, an abundance of meat in the diet may affect adversely. Hence, this is advised, but kept in control.
  4. Cholesterol: To keep cholesterol amount in check during dialysis, the patient needs to cut down on fruits and vegetables and specific fat diets, while eating a sufficient amount of fish.
  5. Protein: High protein food is necessary for a patient with a kidney disease. Meat is an excellent source of protein. Along with that, poultry, fish, and eggs are important, as well. Hence, all this is included in the diet.
  6. Fluids: Dialysis helps in removing the excessive waste fluids from the kidney. But, to keep the body hydrated, the patient is allowed liquid intake, but only up to a certain limit.

It is necessary to maintain a proper diet during dialysis, as it quickens the treatment as well as helps the patient recover quickly.

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