Fall Foods That Chronic Kidney Disease Patients Are Avoiding But Can And Should Enjoy This Season

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The summer has now left and the fall is upon the Chronic Kidney Disease (CKD) Community. Fresh apple harvest brings a variety of recipes such as pie and cider. Along with the changing colors comes delicious food that is packed with CKD appropriate nutrients that assist eye health (antioxidant beta carotene), prostate health (antioxidant lycopene) and more. Here are a few fall foods that people with CKD should not miss out on. 

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Sweet Potatoes are rich in the antioxidant beta-carotene as well as fiber, vitamin B6, folate, vitamin C and are delicious baked whole in the oven or roasted with a drizzle of olive oil. Although most CKD patients avoid sweet potatoes because they have higher levels of potassium, leaching can lower potassium levels found in the vegetable. According to the National Kidney Foundation, sweet potatoes should be leached in warm water. Slice the sweet potato into thin pieces and rinse under warm running water. Place them in a warm water bath at a ratio of ten parts water to one part sweet potatoes. Soak for at least two hours. Rinse again in warm water and cook at a ratio of five parts water to one part sweet potatoes. Ask your Dietitian how much leached potatoes are safe for you to personally consume.

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Chili will warm you up when the weather turns cold. Traditional recipes and canned chili are high in sodium and may contain high-phosphorus ingredients like beans or are served with cheese. This turns many people with CKD off from the recipe. The key, however, to making chili kidney-friendly is to limit or substitute the beans, tomatoes and tomato sauce while selecting fresh ingredients naturally low in sodium when possible. KidneyBuzz.com has shared a Renal Diet appropriate Chili Recipe in the Impact Meals section of its website.

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Brussel Sprouts are little cabbages and are known to be rich in phytochemicals. These sprouts are believed to have antioxidant properties which are a great anti-cancer fighter. They are delicious when roasted in the oven or sautéed and drizzled with olive oil and honey. 

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Apples are considered low in potassium with only 158mg of the mineral in the average apple. They provide fiber along with quercitin (heart-healthy antioxidant). Baked apple sprinkled with cinnamon and raisins makes the perfect after dinner treat while apple cider will keep you warm during cold fall nights. 

Recommended Reading: Too much potassium (hyperkalemia) is dangerous for CKD Patients' Heart Health

Cranberries are only found fresh in the fall but they freeze well, so stock up on a few extra bags. In addition to protecting against bladder infections, cranberries protect the stomach from ulcer-causing bacteria and are full of beneficial antioxidants. You should feel free to make homemade cranberry sauce, bake cranberry muffins and add dried cranberries to salads.

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The key to successfully following your renal diet is moderation. Balance a wide variety of foods to develop short-term and long-term meal plans that suit your taste while following your dietary restrictions. Consuming too much of any one food can be dangerous, but carefully managing your preparation and consumption allows you to eat things that you enjoy. KidneyBuzz.com encourages those with CKD to use this article for informational purposes only and not as a substitute for suggestions or advice from their Dietitians and Nephrologists. Hence, completely avoid any food that your Nephrologist or Dietitian feels is unsafe and consult with them before making any changes to your renal diet.

*Note: Do not forget to order your No BP/No Stick Medical Alert Bracelet  and your FREE KidneyBuzz.com Impact Meal Recipe Book!     

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Young, Dr. Lisa. "Delicious -- and Nutritious -- Fall Produce to Eat This Season." The Huffington Post. TheHuffingtonPost.com

Fritscher, Lisa. "Can You Eat Sweet Potatoes on a Renal Diet? Livestrong.com. LiveStrong.

"Favorite Fall Recipes for People with Kidney Disease." Davita.com. - DaVita.