With 10% of the world population suffering from kidney disease, it is crucial to educate ourselves on kidney health- how to care for them, what to eat and what not to eat, so that we can refrain from complications that could hinder our overall health. The kidneys are considerably small but powerful organs in the lower abdomen that perform many important functions and also play a significant role in the overall health of the body. In brief, they are responsible for filtering waste products from the blood, producing urine, balancing body fluids and electrolyte levels, regulating blood pressure by releasing hormones, and many other essential tasks.
The kidneys effortlessly perform all these tasks with no outside help. Unfortunately, there are many factors and various ways that can restrict the optimal functioning of these vital organs or even damaged them which could lead to conditions like Chronic Kidney Disease (CKD). While diabetes and high blood pressure are some of the most common risk factors that can affect the kidney’s ability to function, factors like obesity, smoking, genetics, gender, and age can also increase the risk. Meanwhile, diet also plays a significant role in maintaining kidney health. While some foods may generally support and boost the performance of the kidneys, others may not be suitable for people with kidney disease as they can place stress on the organs and cause damage.
Therefore, it is important to know what food works best and what doesn’t to help maintain the proper functioning of the kidneys and prevent damage to these organs. This article aims to provide information on certain foods that are considered to be safe and healthy when it comes to maintaining good kidney health.
Here are the 10 best kidney-friendly foods you should know:
Cauliflower is a nutritious vegetable that is high in Vitamin C and vitamin K and is an excellent source of folate and fibre. It is low in potassium making it an excellent food for the kidneys. It is also loaded with anti-inflammatory compounds such as indoles, thiocyanates and glucosinolates that help the liver neutralize toxic substances that could damage cell membranes and DNA.
1 cup serving boiled cauliflower = 19 mg sodium, 176 mg potassium, 40 mg phosphorus
Since sodium or added salt is one of the few things people with kidney problems are advised to avoid, garlic can be an excellent alternative. It is an excellent seasoning choice that is rich in Vitamin C & B6, manganese and contains sulphur compounds with anti-inflammatory properties. Garlic is also known to help prevent the formation of plaque on teeth, reduce inflammation and lower cholesterol.
1 clove garlic = 1 mg sodium, 12 mg potassium, 4 mg phosphorus
Capsicums are a perfect kidney-friendly food as they are low in potassium and high in flavour. They are also loaded with helpful antioxidant compounds such as vitamin C and lycopene, and other essential nutrients, including Vitamin A, B6, folic acid and fibre beneficial for a healthy kidney.
One small red pepper (74 grams) = 3 mg sodium, 156 mg potassium, 19 mg phosphorus
Onions are low in sodium and potassium which makes them an excellent food for a renal diet. They are a great source of chromium, manganese, Vitamins B & C and contain prebiotic fibres that maintain a healthy digestive system. They are also high in antioxidants such as flavonoids that help reduce heart disease and protects against cancer.
One small onion (70 grams) = 3 mg sodium, 102 mg potassium, 20 mg phosphorus
Cabbage is relatively low in potassium, phosphorous and sodium which makes it especially safe for people with kidney disease. It also contains many helpful compounds and vitamins that can help boost over-all health. It is rich in Vitamin B, B6, C, K & folic acid and contains insoluble fibres essential for a healthy digestive system. It is also packed with phytochemicals that help fight against free radicals in the body.
1/2 cup serving green cabbage = 6 mg sodium, 60 mg potassium, 9 mg phosphorus
Apart from being low in potassium and phosphorous, this crunchy tuberous root-vegetable makes a healthy addition to a renal diet due to its rich nutrient content. Radishes are a great source of antioxidants like vitamin C that are known to lower heart disease risk and cataract.
A half-cup (58 grams) of sliced radishes = 23 mg sodium, 135 mg potassium, 12 mg phosphorus
Unlike many leafy green veggies like spinach and kale that are high in potassium, arugula is relatively low in potassium and rich in essential nutrients which makes it an excellent addition to a renal diet. It is high in calcium, manganese, vitamin K, and also contains nitrates, which is known to lower blood pressure, beneficial for those with kidney disease.
One cup (20 grams) of raw arugula = 6 mg sodium, 74 mg potassium, 10 mg phosphorus
Besides being known best for their rich antioxidant power, Blueberries are also loaded with various nutrients like Vitamin C, manganese, fibre, etc. that are incredibly beneficial to health. They are also low in calorie and are a perfect kidney-friendly food as they are low in sodium, phosphorous and potassium.
1/2 cup serving fresh blueberries = 4 mg sodium, 65 mg potassium, 7 mg phosphorus
Not only delicious, but red grapes also pack a ton of nutrients such as Vitamin C and flavonoids, antioxidants that help reduce inflammation and formation of blood clots. Red grapes are also rich in resveratrol, a type of flavonoid that is known to support heart health and protect against diabetes and cognitive damage.
1/2 cup serving red grapes = 1 mg sodium, 88 mg potassium, 4 mg phosphorus
Besides being a great source of healthy monounsaturated fat like oleic acid that helps reduce inflammation, olive oil is especially perfect for kidney health as it is free of phosphorous.
1 tablespoon olive oil = less than 1 mg sodium, less than 1 mg potassium, 0 mg phosphorus
Preserva’s Nephrogold Tablets & Daily Detox Tea
In case you are unable to find these superfoods on the grocery aisle, our healthy and nutritious Nephrogold Tablets offers an excellent natural solution for all your Kidney health needs. The tablets feature 17 potent Ayurvedic ingredients to form a complex yet healthy blend of natural goodness that help increase the functioning of kidneys, prevent Urinary Tract Infections and prevent the formation of stones.
Likewise, our Daily Detox Tea provides the perfect way of holding nature’s healing power in a refreshing cup of tea! It helps detox the body from harmful substance by supporting liver and kidney function.
Healthy Kidneys are vital for the proper functioning of the body. When the kidneys are not working properly, waste builds up in the blood, including waste products from food which can hinder or even damage the organs, which in turn affect overall health. Therefore, it is crucial to follow a healthy diet and lifestyle changes to maintain the proper and healthy functioning of the kidneys.
Note: This article is meant to offer general health information. Consult with your doctor, dietician or healthcare practitioner before making changes to your diet for safety and to ensure it meets your nutritional and overall needs.
Withania Somnifera or Ashwagandha is the most common herb used in traditional medicine systems like Chinese.
It belongs to the genus Phyllanthus which means ‘leaf and flower’ because its flower can be associated with the leaf.
Chharila a.k.a. Parmelia Perlata is a plant belonging to the Parmeliaceae family. It is popularly known as stone flower in India.
Devdaru is a Sanskrit word which means “wood of Gods” and is also known as Himalayan Cedar.
Fenugreek or Trigonella foenum-graecum (triangular shape seeds) is a spice and a medicine used in India, Middle East and Egypt.
Ginger, scientifically known as Zingiber officinale, belongs to the plant family Zingiberaceae. Turmeric and cardamom also belong to the same botanical family.
Gokhru aka Puncturevine is a herbaceous perennial plant from Zygophyllaceae family with the scientific name Tribulus Terrestris.
Green Green tea is the most preferred tea by the health-conscious community all over the world. It is derived from Camellia sinensis plant.
Jeevanti is known as Jivani or Madhusrava in Sanskrit and its scientific name is Leptadenia Reticulate.
Kultha with the botanical name Macrotyloma Uniflorum (previously termed as Dolichos Biflorus) is a plant from the Leguminosae family.
Lajauni or Mimosa Pudica is also known as touch me not, action plant, humble plant, shame plant or sleepy plant.
Citrus limon or lemon belongs to the citrus family Rutaceae. It is one of the most useful crops that provide valuable essential oils and juice for medical, food and beauty industry.
Pasanabheda aka Bergenia Ligulata is a plant from the family Saxifragaceae. This plant is usually found in the foothills of Himalaya from Kashmir to Bhutan.
Prickly chaff flower is a powerful healing plant from the plant family Amaranthaceae. It is scientifically known as Achyranthes Aspera.
Boerhavia Diffusa is commonly referred to as Punarnava, which means to renew or rejuvenate the body in Ayurveda.
Sahadevi also known as Vernonia Cinerea, is a plant that belongs to the Asteraceae family. It is called Sahdebi or Sahadevi in Hindi.
Herbs have been used since the origin of Ayurveda till date, as potent natural medication and they still need to be explored.
Tulsi is an aromatic plant belonging to Lamiaceae family.
Varuna also known as Crateva Nurvala belongs to the plant family Capparaceae. It is found in parts of Asia and China.
Coriander or coriander sativum is a herb from the Apiaceae family. It is also known as cilantro or Chinese parsley.
Motha aka Cyperus Rotundus is a plant from the Cyperaceae family. It is basically grown in parts of Africa, Europe and Asia. In India, it is found all through the temperate, tropical regions.
Curcumin is a bioactive ingredient of turmeric and is known for its medicinal properties. Turmeric is a familiar dietary spice.
Fennel is scientifically used as Foeniculum vulgare. It is a flowering plant with feather-like leaves and umbrella-like yellow flowers.
The scientific name of Gojihva is Onosma bracteatum and it belongs to family Boraginaceae.