A Chronic Kidney Disease patient emailed KidneyBuzz.com and said, "I had no idea, but my friend at Dialysis was telling me that pineapple is good for Dialysis patients. Is this true? I thought patients had to stay away from all tropical fruit?"
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Most Chronic Kidney Disease and Dialysis patients believe that they should avoid pineapple due to assumed high amounts of citrus and potassium. However, in reality, pineapple is, "A great fruit choice for the kidney diet," noted Sara Colman (Renal/Kidney Dietitian with 20 years of experience). The following are a list of benefits that pineapple offers and likely the reason that a growing number of Dialysis patients are incorporating the tropical fruit into their diets.
Let's be clear, pineapple must be enjoyed by patients in moderation. According to DaVita Inc., pineapple fits a low potassium diet plan with 125 mg potassium for 1/2 cup frozen or canned (chunks or crushed), 2 rings or 3/4 cup fresh. Pineapples are very low in sodium as well as phosphorus, and high in vitamin C. The fruit is also fat-free. Pineapple juice has 160 mg potassium for a four-ounce serving. Your Dietitian may advise you to have the fruit or the juice but not both at the same time if you are limiting potassium intake. Pineapple offers the following health benefits to Chronic Kidney Disease and Dialysis patients:
Heart Health: As most Dialysis patients know, heart complications are the leading cause of death in the Chronic Kidney Disease Community. The fiber, potassium, and vitamin C content in pineapple all support improved Heart Health.
Immune System Support: Most Chronic Kidney Disease and Dialysis patients suffer from weak immune systems. Pineapple contains half of the daily recommended value of vitamin C, according to the Food And Drug Administration (FDA). Vitamin C is an excellent nutrient to bolster the immune system and help protect against virus and infection.
Blood pressure: A common complication among Chronic Kidney Disease patients, the moderate potassium consumed from pineapple helps to lower blood pressure levels.
Cancer: As an excellent source of the strong antioxidant - vitamin C - pineapples can help combat the formation of free radicals known to cause cancer (a growing concern in the Chronic Kidney Disease Community). Diets rich in antioxidants may also play a protective role against prostate cancer, according to a study conducted by the Harvard School of Public Health's Department of Nutrition.
Diabetes: Studies have shown that individuals with Type II Diabetes may have improved blood sugar, lipids, and insulin levels when consuming pineapple. One medium pineapple provides about 13 grams of fiber.
Digestion: Dialysis patients constantly suffer from constipation and stomach issues. Pineapples, because of their fiber and water content, help to prevent constipation and promote regularity and a healthy digestive tract.
Healing And Inflammation: Some studies have shown that bromelain, an enzyme found in pineapples, can reduce swelling, bruising, healing time, and pain associated with injury and surgical intervention.
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