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Nutrition for Kidney Disease

  • Do not use added salt at the table and do not use salt in cooking. Do not use salt substitute. Drain and rinse canned vegetables in cold water or look for lower sodium canned goods and TV dinners. TV dinners should have less than 600mg of sodium per entrée. 
  • If you are not on hemodialysis, eat smaller portions of meats, fish or eggs. Plant proteins include beans, nuts and grains. A cooked portion of meat or fish is 2-3 ounces.  
  • Limit milk and dairy food intake. A portion of milk is a half a cup.  
  • Choose low fat or fat free dairy products and lean meats to decrease saturated fat intake.
  • Limit alcohol intake. Do not consume more than one drink per day for women and two drinks per day for men. An alcoholic drink is equal to 12 ounces of beer, 5 ounces of wine or 1.5 ounces of liquor or spirits. 
  • Limit your potassium intake. Choose lower potassium foods more often such as peaches, apples, cooked white pasta, rice, grits or cooked wheat cereals, carrots or green beans. 
  • Limit fluid intake as prescribed by your doctor (generally 4 to 5 cups daily).
  • Eat three meals-a-day. A nutritional supplement may be prescribed by your doctor or registered dietitian if you require additional calories, protein and vitamins. If you are on dialysis, the dietitian at the dialysis unit will create a diet to fit your unique needs.

Visit the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics and the National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases for more information on nutrition for kidney disease.

Contact your doctor before making any diet changes as related to your medical condition(s).

To make an appointment for nutrition counseling:

Outpatient diet counseling — 484-526-1000
Diabetes Center — 484-526-3025