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Where can I get information on kidney function and proper diet?

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General & Family Physician
Practicing since : 2008
Answered : 641 Questions
I am 70 years old recently found out that my kidneys were not top functioning my Dr. said that it was normal for my age. I am not satisfied with that answer. I try to eat healthy a lot of the greens ,fruits and supplements I take contain a good amount of potassium , my understanding is that this is not the best for kidneys that are not filtering proteins efficiently . I am trying in my own to plan that fits my needs better ,I would like some guidance on where and how to get information on kidney function and the proper diet.
Posted Sat, 8 Mar 2014 in Kidney Conditions
Answered by Dr. Gaurav Katiyar 51 minutes later
Brief Answer: Your doctor is correct. Detailed Answer: Hi, I have gone through your query. I appreciate that you are well planned in your diet. But am sorry to say that kidney function decreases with age. With aging, the kidneys undergoes a multitude of structural and functional changes. There will be decrease in renal mass, number of glomeruli and renal cortex. Mass of kidney also decreases. Overall this lead to decreases Glomerular Filtration rate (GFR). However, the age-related changes in the kidneys may be further complicated by concurrent diseases common in old age, such as hypertension, diabetes, congestive cardiac failure, atherosclerosis, urinary tract outflow obstruction, recurrent urinary tract infections(UTI) and drug-induced nephrotoxicity. You are also correct that your kidneys are not removing toxins effectively out of protein diet because of above mentioned reasons. I advise you to restrict High protein diet and drink plenty of water to keep yourself well hydrated. Hope I have answered your query. If you have any further questions I will be happy to help.
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Follow-up: Where can I get information on kidney function and proper diet? 33 hours later
My question was where and how can I find guidance as to what to do to slow the progression of what ever is happening to my kidneys; for example, what it is consider an appropriated amount of protein on my diet and also where can I find a list of fruits and vegetables that are low on potassium ?
Answered by Dr. Gaurav Katiyar 4 hours later
Brief Answer: It is age related. Detailed Answer: Hi, Thanks for the follow-up. Age related decreased functioning of kidney cannot be prevented and is always progressive. However you can follow diet suitable for kidney. The average daily dietary protein intake level that is sufficient to meet the nutrient requirements of nearly all (97-98 percent) healthy individuals in your age and gender group is: 48.0 grams/day. As you are aware that low-protein diet, diet with low potassium, sodium and phosphorus is good for the kidneys. I am providing you with list of some of the fruits and vegetables. Low protein: Fruits: Apples Grapes Raisins Vegetables: Carrots Celery Chilies Corn, cooked or canned mushrooms Onions, green Onions, red, white, or yellow Parsley Peppers, Bell, all colors, raw Potato Low Potassium: Apples cranberries grapes pineapples strawberries Cauliflower onions peppers radishes summer and zucchini squash lettuce Pita tortillas white breads white rice To limit sodium in your meal plan: Do not add salt to your food when cooking or eating. Try cooking with fresh herbs, lemon juice or other salt-free spices. Choose fresh or frozen vegetables instead of canned vegetables. If you do use canned vegetables, drain and rinse them to remove extra salt before cooking or eating them. Avoid processed meats like ham, bacon, sausage and lunch meats. Munch on fresh fruits and vegetables rather than crackers or other salty snacks. Avoid canned soups and frozen dinners that are high in sodium. Avoid pickled foods, like olives and pickled. Limit high-sodium condiments like soy sauce, BBQ sauce and ketchup. Low Phosphorus diet: Italian, French or sourdough bread Corn or rice cereals and cream of wheat Unsalted popcorn Some light-colored sodas and lemonade Eat Healthy Fat which is Unsaturated fat like: Olive oil Vegetable oil. Choosing healthy foods is a great start, but eating too much of even healthy foods can be a problem. The other part of a healthy diet is portion control, or watching how much you eat. Eat slowly, and stop eating when you are not hungry any more. It takes about 20 minutes for your stomach to tell your brain that you are full. If you eat too quickly, you may eat more than you need. Good portion control is an important part of any meal plan. It is even more important in a kidney-friendly meal plan. If you do not have any clarifications, you can close the discussion and rate the answer. Wish you good health.
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Follow-up: Where can I get information on kidney function and proper diet? 6 hours later
Thank you very much: I have one last question, if there are no other health concerns, plus following all recommendations for good kidney care, how long one can expect to live without serious concerns about your kidney's health, oh how many glasses of water are optimum for hydration ?
Answered by Dr. Gaurav Katiyar 3 hours later
Brief Answer: Life span varies Detailed Answer: Hi, Thanks for the follow-up again. Life expectancy without any kidney or other disease depends upon various factors. It is not possible to give exact time or range of time. It also depends upon socio-economic condition of the country. Like in your country it is between 75 to 80 years. But it doesn't mean that everyone will live to a maximum of 80 years. Don't get paranoid about your kidney condition, they are fine in relation to your age. Otherwise some other problem will arise. Just eat healthy. About 10- 15 glasses of water (about 100 ounces) is optimum for keeping yourself well hydrated. If you do not have any clarifications, you can close the discussion and rate the answer. Wish you good health.
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