Carbohydrates are an important aspect of any Renal Diet. While Diabetics are challenged in trying to limit their Carbohydrate foods (Carbs) because of Blood Sugar concerns, for those with Chronic Kidney Disease, Carbs give them necessary energy for their daily activities. Looking at whether you have early stage CKD, are on a particular type of dialysis treatment, or have Diabetes has been the typical way of determining the amount of Carbohydrates you should have per day. However, a new study conducted by Bio Medical Central (BMC) and published in the U.S. National Library of Medicine on February 21, 2014 may shine a new light on Carb consumption.
The study found that diets "high in Carbohydrates were associated with increased arterial (artery) stiffness in patients with established Cardiovascular (Heart) Disease." Cardiovascular Disease is one of the most prevalent consequences of CKD as well as Diabetes. Nutrition is considered a modifiable risk factor to prevent life threatening events, and a better balance of Carbs in the diet could further reduce risk.
Several foods contain hidden Carbohydrates, including: Starchy vegetables (garlic, mushrooms, cucumber, etc.); breads and grains; beans, peas and lentils; and fruits (oranges, grapes, apples, etc.) as well as sweetened fruit juices.
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Often times, the easiest foods for "on the run" meals or your "go-to" comfort foods are high in unhealthy Carbs. Work with your Dietitian on deciding which Carbohydrates are best for your Renal and/or Diabetic diets. Areas of focus should be the following:
Replacing Your Favorite Carbohydrates: Exchange your breakfast carbs for high protein alternatives such as a boiled egg or some low fat cheese instead. The lean protein will stave off hunger longer and give you that long-term energy you need to make it through the day.
Cutting Out Hidden Carbohydrates: There are hidden Carbs in many of the foods you eat every day. Avoid sports drinks that are high in calories and sodium and choose tea or coffee that offer the same energy boost without all the sugar. Also limit juice drinks that have no fiber and are high in calories, and choose the whole fruit instead. When choosing juices, look for 100% fruit/vegetable juice, without added sugar.
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Reducing Unhealthy Carbohydrates: Beware of pre-made sauces and dips for your salads, vegetables, and meats. They are often loaded with extra fat and calories. Since you need to eat a modest amount of Carbs each day for health and energy, try cutting out some of the unhealthy Carbs from your diet like sugars and flours in exchange for their whole grain counterparts.
Reduce fast food Carbs (fries, onion rings, pies) by choosing a healthier alternative like a homemade side salad or fruit salad. If you stop desiring the Carbs that you should not have, then you will better enjoy the healthy Carbs you can have. You'll feel less deprived and more energized! Visit KidneyBuzz.com every day for Breaking News & Information. For a more in depth cooking guide you should pick up, Fight Kidney Disease and Diabetes which is on sale all of National Kidney Month for just $5.00.
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Chan HT, Chan YH, Yiu KH, Li SW, Tam S, Lau CP, Tse HF. "Worsened Arterial Stiffness in High-risk Cardiovascular Patients with High Habitual Carbohydrate Intake: A Cross-sectional Vascular Function Study." Http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/. National Center for Biotechnology Information & U.S. National Library of Medicine.
Vaccaro, Joan A., and Fatma G. Huffman. "Monounsaturated Fatty Acid, Carbohydrate Intake, and Diabetes Status Are Associated with Arterial Pulse Pressure." National Center for Biotechnology Information. U.S. National Library of Medicine.
Christine Swafford, MS, RD, CSR, LD. "Carbohydrates and the Kidney Diet." Http://www.davita.com/. DaVita HealthCare Partners Inc.
"Easy Ways to Reduce Your Carbohydrate Intake." Http://www.fitday.com/. Internet Brands, Inc.