Chronic Kidney Disease (CKD) and Nutrition

If detected and treated early, Chronic Kidney Disease (CKD) may be slowed or stopped. Consulting a dietitian at the initial stages can reduce the consequence of malnutrition and improve the patient’s well-being.


Protein intake needs to be adjusted during different stages of kidney disease to avoid overloading the kidneys. The initial recommendation is 0.6g/kg body weight. For patients who are malnourished, protein intake of 0.7g/kg body weight is recommended.


Energy requirement in Chronic Kidney Disease (CKD) patients is similar to the general population. However, maintaining normal body weight is essential to control high blood pressure, diabetes and high cholesterol.

Sodium (salt)

Excessive amounts of salt can be harmful to a patient as it results in water retention and raises blood pressure. A patient should not consume more than one teaspoon (2.4g) of salt per day and avoid food which is high in sodium content such as sauces (soya sauce, ketchup, chilli sauce and seasoning), processed food (canned food, sausages, nuggets and burger patties etc.), food marinated with salt (salted fish or egg, anchovies, dried prawns, belacan, fermented shrimp and pickles, etc.), as well as instant or fast food.


Due to the decreased kidney function, a patient’s kidney may not be able to remove enough phosphate from the blood. This causes him or her to have a high blood phosphate level which can cause itchiness and loss of calcium from the bones, leading to osteoporosis.
High-phosphate foods that should be avoided include dairy products, kidney beans, split peas, nuts and peanut butter as well as beverages like hot chocolate, and alcohol and carbonated drinks.


Usually people with Chronic Kidney Disease (CKD) do not need to limit their potassium intake. However, if necessary, a patient will be recommended to adjust intake. Some high potassium foods are potato, squash, banana, orange, tomato, dried peas and beans.


Fluid intake for Chronic Kidney Disease (CKD) patients must be monitored. Besides water, other edible stuff in liquid forms at room temperature are also considered fluids, such as soups and ice cream.
To do this, patients should drink from prepared bottles so that they do not over drink. Eat less sodium-laden food so you won’t feel thirsty.
Take candy or chewing gum to produce more saliva and wet your mouth with an ice cube if you are thirsty.

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