Living with Kidney Dialysis Diet

Living with Kidney Dialysis

Living with Kidney Dialysis was a great medical breakthrough. In its early days, the impression was that it would not extend life very long, and what life was left to the dialysis patient would be fairly unpleasant. Most of the time would be spent in clinics with doctors, getting treated but times have changed. Patients who remain otherwise healthy and active can live long and happy lives even after dialysis becomes necessary.

How much dialysis you will need, how long it will take and any dietary restrictions that will be necessary will vary according to your particular case. Your doctor and nutritionist will determine your dietary needs based on blood and urine samples, as well as the stage and type of kidney disease. This will also determine how long your treatments will take and how often you will need to have them.

Living with Kidney Dialysis is split into two methods:

Hemodialysis dialysis. Ninety percent of dialysis patients undergo hemodialysis. This process circulates your entire bloodstream though a machine which cleans your blood of wastes and then returns it to your body.

Peritoneal dialysis requires more patient involvement and responsibility, and fewer visits to the clinic. Instead of using a machine to filter wastes, this process uses your own peritoneal membrane. This is a semi-permeable membrane surrounding the abdominal organs. It will let out all the little particles that make up waste products, but bigger cells, like blood cells, will remain inside. The catch is that the patient must introduce the dialysate fluid through a catheter and drain it back out again, approximately every three or four hours, then replenish the fluid. The draining process takes about half an hour and must be performed about five times a day. The upside of this is that the patient does not have visit the clinic several hours a day every day, but not every patient is suited to handle this level of responsibility, and this type of dialysis requires careful cleaning to prevent infection. This may not be an option for patients who are much larger than average.

To prepare you for Living with Kidney Dialysis, your doctor will have to make a fistula (an entrance) into your body, with a minor surgical procedure, in your arm, leg, or neck. Smaller or younger patients may need to have a small plastic graft added to the fistula to make the vessel large enough. The blood is then circulated through the fistula and into the machine to pass through dialysate, a special fluid that filters out all the waste products and impurities, it then goes back into the body.

Living with Kidney Dialysis Diet

There is not one solitary diet for the kidney disease patient, though there are some general guidelines to watch out for. Regardless of who you are and what your general health is, your dietary needs will change during the five stages of kidney disease. These changes will be small, at the beginning, but as the disease progresses through the intermediate stage, protein and other nutrients will have to be restricted in order to slow the progression of the disease. The fifth and final stage, end stage renal disease, will require an increase in protein, above and beyond the requirement for someone with healthy kidneys. The exact amount of protein must be determined by health professionals – too much or too little can be detrimental to your health. Those high-protein diets that were once all the rage in the past can damage your kidneys and cause other problems as well. Diets like those tend to promote sources of protein that have too much fat and too many calories, which carry difficulties of their own. Protein should come from healthy sources like plants and the better kind of protein supplements.

Your nutritionist will be very important to you in each stage of kidney disease, in order to keep your kidneys as healthy as possible for as long as possible. A healthy diet protects not only your kidneys, but prevents all sorts of other complications, as well. Keeping a diet low in salt and low in fat will help you control your blood pressure, which is a big factor in developing or exacerbating kidney disease. Of course, a healthy diet will also help you keep your weight at the proper level. Extra body weight can cause extra strain on your kidneys and complicate any other conditions you might have. You may be surprised how the loss of just a few pounds can stabilize your blood pressure and make you healthier overall.

Fluids are also a consideration for the kidney patient. Most people are a little bit dehydrated throughout the day. The feeling of being thirsty is actually the first stage of dehydration. Too many fluids in the body can also be dangerous, because it dilutes your electrolyte content. Electrolyte imbalances can lead to all sorts of things, from confusion and an inability to concentrate, to heart irregularities. Kidney patients will often be instructed to drink fewer fluids since their kidneys do not remove enough of the excess, which can lead to swelling of the organs or around the organs.

There is not one solitary diet for the kidney disease patient, though there are some general guidelines to watch out for. Regardless of who you are and what your general health is, your dietary needs will change during the five stages of kidney disease. These changes will be small, at the beginning, but as the disease progresses through the intermediate stage, protein and other nutrients will have to be restricted in order to slow the progression of the disease. The fifth and final stage, end stage renal disease, will require an increase in protein, above and beyond the requirement for someone with healthy kidneys. The exact amount of protein must be determined by health professionals – too much or too little can be detrimental to your health. Those high-protein diets that were once all the rage in the past can damage your kidneys and cause other problems as well. Diets like those tend to promote sources of protein that have too much fat and too many calories, which carry difficulties of their own. Protein sh ould come from healthy sources like plants and the better kind of protein supplements.

Your nutritionist will become very important to you in each stage of kidney disease, in order to keep your kidneys as healthy as possible for as long as possible. A healthy diet protects not only your kidneys, but prevents all sorts of other complications, as well. Keeping a diet low in salt and low in fat will help you control your blood pressure, a big factor in developing or exacerbating kidney disease. Of course, a healthy diet will also help you keep your weight at the proper level. Extra body weight can cause extra strain on your kidneys and complicate any other conditions you might have. You may be surprised how the loss of just a few pounds can stabilize your blood pressure and make you healthier overall.

Fluids are also a consideration for the kidney patient. Most people are a little bit dehydrated throughout the day. The feeling of being thirsty is actually the first stage of dehydration. Too many fluids in the body can also be dangerous, because it dilutes your electrolyte content. Electrolyte imbalances can lead to all sorts of things, from confusion and an inability to concentrate, to heart irregularities. Kidney patients will often be instructed to drink lesser fluids since their kidneys do not remove enough of the excess, which can lead to swelling of the organs or around the organs.

Living with Kidney Dialysis

Whether you use the traditional hemodialysis method or peritoneal dialysis, your entire lifestyle is going to change. You will need to meet with a nutritionist regularly to determine what you should eat and what you should avoid eating. Someone who is in the earlier stages of kidney disease will need a much lower supply of protein than someone in a later stage, for instance. Such a patient will need not only food-based sources of protein, but protein supplements as well, since these proteins are effective in providing the necessary nutrients.

Patients who need less protein will also likely need to reduce their salt and fat. This will help to avoid the development of hypertension, a condition that both aggravates and is aggravated by kidney disease. A good way to do this is to take protein supplements instead of using fatty meat sources.

One of these good sources is Profect, a protein supplement made by Protica. This tiny (less than three ounces) liquid supplement has 25 grams of protein, but only 100 calories per serving, and comes in a number of delicious fruit flavors such as: Grapefruit-Mango, Fresh Citrus Berry, Passion Fruit, Blue Raspberry Swirl, Orange Pineapple, Ruby Melon Twist, Fuzzy Peach Nectar and Cool Melon Splash.

Dialysis was a great medical breakthrough, to be sure, but in its early days, the impression was that it would not extend life very long, and what life was left to the dialysis patient would be fairly unpleasant. Most of their time would be spent in clinics with doctors, getting treated. Times have changed. Patients who remain otherwise healthy and active can live long and happy lives, even after dialysis becomes necessary.

How much dialysis you will need, how long it will take, and any dietary restrictions that will be necessary will vary, according to your particular case. Your doctor and nutritionist will determine your dietary needs based on blood and urine samples, as well as the stage and type of your kidney disease. This will also determine how long your treatments will take and how often you will have to have them.

Kidney dialysis comes in two types: hemodialysis and peritoneal dialysis. Ninety percent of dialysis patients undergo hemodialysis. This process circulates your entire bloodstream though a machine which cleans your blood of wastes and then returns it to your body.

To prepare you for dialysis, your doctor will have to make a fistula (an entrance) into your body, with a minor surgical procedure, in your arm, leg, or neck. Smaller or younger patients may have to have a small plastic graft added to the fistula to make the vessel large enough. The blood is then circulated through the fistula and into the machine to pass through dialysate, a special fluid that filters out all the waste products and impurities, then back into the body.

Peritoneal dialysis requires more patient involvement and responsibility, and fewer visits to the clinic. Instead of using a machine to filter wastes, this process uses your own peritoneal membrane. This is a semi-permeable membrane surrounding the abdominal organs. It will let out all the little particles that make up waste products, but bigger cells, like blood cells, will remain inside. The catch is that the patient must introduce the dialysate fluid through a catheter and drain it back out again, approximately every three or four hours, then replenish the fluid. The draining process takes about half an hour and must be performed about five times a day. The upside of this is that the patient does not have visit the clinic several hours a day every day, but not every patient is suited to handle this level of responsibility, and this type of dialysis requires careful cleaning to prevent infection. This may not be an option at all for patients who are much larger than average.

Whether you use the traditional hemodialysis method or peritoneal dialysis, your entire lifestyle is going to change. You will need to meet with a nutritionist regularly to determine what you should eat and what you should avoid eating. Someone who is in the earlier stages of kidney disease will need a much lower supply of protein than someone in a later stage, for instance. Such a patient will need not only food-based sources of protein, but protein supplements as well, since these proteins are absolutely certain of providing the necessary nutrients.

Patients who need less protein will also likely need to reduce their salt and fat. This will help to avoid the development of hypertension, a condition that both aggravates and is aggravated by kidney disease. A good way to do this is to take protein supplements instead of using fatty meat sources.

One of these good sources is Profect, a protein supplement made by Protica. This tiny (less than three ounces) liquid supplement has 25 grams of protein, but only 100 calories per serving, and comes in a number of delicious fruit flavors such as: Grapefruit-Mango, Fresh Citrus Berry, Passion Fruit, Blue Raspberry Swirl, Orange Pineapple, Ruby Melon Twist, Fuzzy Peach Nectar and Cool Melon Splash.

Protica Research (Protica, Inc.) specializes in the development of Capsulized Foods. Protica manufactures Profect, IsoMetric, Pediagro, Fruitasia and over 100 other brands, including Medicare-approved, whey protein liquid for cancer patients. You can learn more at Protica Research – Copyright

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