Are Chronic Kidney Disease And Dialysis Patients Getting Enough Fiber?



Eating a high-fiber diet is thought to help prevent constipation and its related problems. It may lower blood pressure, improve cholesterol levels (heart complications are the leading cause of death in the Chronic Kidney Disease Community), help control blood sugar levels, promote regularity, prevent hemorrhoids, and it may help with reaching and/or staying at a healthy weight. Still, many Chronic Kidney Disease and Dialysis patients do not get enough fiber, because most fiber sources are too high in potassium and phosphorus (corn, barley, whole wheat, legumes, nuts, and beans). However, by identifying the following safe sources and amounts of fiber, Chronic Kidney Disease and Dialysis patients can boost their health outcomes and quality of life by enjoying this very beneficial nutrient.

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According to the Large Dialysis Organization DaVita Inc., "The Food and Nutrition Board suggests 25 grams of fiber a day for women and 38 grams of fiber a day for men under the age of 50." For people over age 50, women should get 21 grams of fiber a day and men should get 30 grams of fiber a day in their diet.

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There are several ways for Chronic Kidney Disease and Dialysis patients to increase their fiber intake including: Enjoying regular meal times, Eating all the allowed servings of kidney-friendly fruits and vegetables (see below), Eating peelings on fruit and vegetables when reasonable, and Snacking on unsalted popcorn and raw vegetables.

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The following are the best high fiber foods for people with Chronic Kidney Disease and Dialysis patients:

  • Apple, unpeeled
  • Fruit cocktail
  • Asparagus
  • Beets
  • Berries
  • Green beans
  • Broccoli
  • Green peas
  • Brussels sprouts
  • High-fiber white bread
  • Raw Cabbage
  • Lettuce
  • Carrots
  • Cooked Mustard greens
  • Cauliflower
  • Okra
  • Celery
  • Onion
  • Cherries
  • Peach
  • Collard greens
  • Unpeeled Pear
  • Corn
  • Plums
  • Summer squash
  • Eggplant

Chronic Kidney Disease and Dialysis patients should note that increasing fiber intake may cause gas, bloating and even cramps. If you are unable to increase your fiber to an adequate level via diet, then discuss fiber supplements with your Healthcare Team.

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