When your kidneys fail, waste products and fluids that normally leave the body as urine remain in your blood. Dialysis removes most of those poisons, but between dialysis treatments, waste builds up again. That is why it is important for you to control the amount and type of food and beverage you eat and drink every day.
Until you meet with your Registered Dietitian Nutritionist at the dialysis clinic for medical nutrition therapy, here are some general guidelines to follow:
♦ Do not add salt to your food. To season foods, use herbs, spices, and salt free
flavorings. Mrs. Dash, onion powder, garlic powder, lemon pepper, lemon juice, lime juice, and vinegar are all good choices. Do not use salt substitute – it is loaded with potassium!!!
♦ Try to include 2-3 servings of high quality protein daily (lean meat, fish, poultry, egg whites). One serving of meat is 3 ounces (about the size of a deck of cards). Limit to a total of 10 ounces daily. Avoid cheese and lunch meat due to their high salt and fat content. Canned tuna can be used if rinsed under running water for two minutes to reduce the sodium content.
♦ Limit milk, yogurt, and ice cream to just one small serving a day. One serving is one-half cup. Non-dairy creamers such as Coffee-mate can be used freely.
♦ Eat no more than 3 servings of fruit each day. One serving is one- half cup or one medium fresh fruit. Choose from the list of low potassium fruits.
♦ Limit vegetables to 2 servings each day. One serving is one-half cup raw or cooked vegetable or one cup tossed salad. Choose from the list of low
♦ Limit fluids to 4 cups or 32 ounces per day (8 ounces = 1 cup). Beverages such as water, lemonade, clear sodas, coffee, tea, and cranberry juice are okay to use—just watch the amounts! Any food that is liquid at room temperature is counted as a fluid, that includes ice, gelatin, and frozen desserts.
♦ Avoid nuts, bran, whole-grains, and chocolate. These foods are high in both potassium and phosphorus and will increase those levels in your blood.
♦ Butter, margarine, mayonnaise, most salad dressings, and vegetable oil (especially olive) can be used liberally.
♦ If you have diabetes, continue to eat meals and snacks at regular times and control your carbohydrate intake. For low blood glucose reactions, do not use orange juice, it is high in potassium!!! Cranberry or apple juice are safer choices.