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HomescienceUnderstand how some diets help protect the kidneys

Understand how some diets help protect the kidneys

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Although many people associate diets with only weight loss, healthy eating is essential to maintaining health. Eating a well-balanced diet can bring many benefits to the body, including disease prevention.

Eating a well-balanced diet can bring many benefits to the body.

Photo: RossHelen | Shutterstock/EdiCase portal

“Most of the time, diet refers to weight loss and is full of restrictive, possibly even unhealthy plans. But new recommendations recently released by health experts point to diet with a different goal: preventing heart attacks, strokes, and kidney problems,” explains nephrologist Dr. . Caroline Regada, MD, intensive care medicine specialist.

Reducing risk factors

New guidelines developed by American Heart Association that it American College of Cardiology Emphasize that a healthy diet Nutritious food can play an important role in reducing the risk of heart attack and stroke, as well as helping to “reduce or reverse” obesity, high cholesterol, diabetes and high blood pressure – all of which are risk factors for heart and kidney disease.

The standard diet Mediterranean sea or the DASH diet (Dietary approaches to stopping high blood pressure) are most recommended for patients who already have or wish to avoid heart and kidney problems,” adds the nephrologist.


The kidneys are complex and sensitive

The integrity and function of the kidneys are greatly affected by lifestyle, given their complexity and sensitivity to any change in the chemical composition of the blood. Nutritionist Dr. explains. Marcella Garcez, Director and Professor of the Brazilian Association of Dietetics (ABRAN).

Benefits of the DASH Diet

According to dr. Caroline Regada, Healthy Eating Like the DASH Diet (Dietary approaches to stopping high blood pressureIt has been shown to be effective in reducing the formation of kidney stones, in addition to reducing the chances of developing diabetes and high blood pressure, which are two major factors in kidney health.

“The DASH diet is based on a high intake of fruits, vegetables, nuts, legumes, low-fat dairy products, and whole grains, and a low intake of sugars and red or processed meat. In these diets, plant or animal proteins are recommended provided they are lean (preferably fish).” Dr. explains. Marcella Garcia.

Differences between the DASH diet and the Mediterranean diet

Although with the same basics, the DASH diet allows for more sources of protein from low-fat dairy products, cuts of meat and poultry, while the DASH diet Mediterranean diet, which was not established as a specific diet, is a reflection of the eating habits common in the various countries bordering the Mediterranean. says d. Caroline Regada.

Excessive consumption of proteins can be harmful to health

Image: Earth Image | Shutterstock/EdiCase portal

Eat a balanced protein

As for proteins, it is necessary to be careful with excesses: “Excessive protein intake affects renal hemodynamics, which leads to overload due to an increase in glomerular filtration rate. My diet Hyperproteinemia also appears to increase kidney size and kidney weight. It is also known that high protein consumption predisposes to the formation of kidney stones,” explains Dr. Caroline Rigada.

In this way, protein intake should be balanced. “Daily protein consumption should be individual and specific, taking into account a person’s age, gender, physical activity, occupation, health status and personal goals. Daily needs can range from 0.6 to 2 grams per kilogram per day and depend on several factors,” confirms Dr. Marcella Garcia.

Pay attention to the vegetarian menu

Doctors emphasize that it is necessary to be careful with the menu when the patient is a vegetarian. As explained by Dr. Caroline Regada, Filling your plate with fried foods, refined carbohydrates, or ultra-processed foods isn’t healthy. These excess foods can lead to the development of diabetes and problems like insulin resistance.”

In addition, consuming sugar can also be dangerous. “Excess sugar leads to greater inflammation, with a consequent risk of developing diabetes — the world’s largest risk factor for chronic kidney disease,” he notes.

So it is important to be mindful of what you put on your plate. “The most important thing is to have a varied and balanced diet, with good sources of good fats, complex carbohydrates (with more fiber) and, in this case, vegetable proteins, which must be combined to provide the necessary amino acids, always preferring foods in nature,” The nutritionist Dr. Marcella Garcia.

Kidney friendly foods

Among the foods that benefit the kidneys, the nephrologist cites the following: citrus fruits (lemon and orange for example), which prevent the formation of crystals in the kidneys; Watermelon is rich in citrate and helps dissolve these crystals. Milk and its derivatives and its dark leaves are rich in calcium.

Dr. explains. Caroline Regada.

Control your sodium intake

Salt consumption is the biggest cause of high blood pressure, it is also called high pressure. “Long-term high blood pressure leads to damage to the kidneys and various blood vessels, that is, damage to target organs, such as in the heart and brain. Recent data show that sodium (salt) also regulates the functioning of immune cells, which supports the theory of increased inflammation in the body,” highlights d. Caroline Regada.

It is necessary to control the amount of sodium eaten. “We know that Brazilian adults eat an average of 12g per day, more than double the recommended amount, so for the general public the advice to reduce salt intake is applied properly and in many cases the intake should be reduced by 5g more, always with guidance. medical,” adds Dr. Marcella Garcia.

Find an expert

The nephrologist reminds us that metabolic diseases (obesity, diabetes) and intestinal diseases (Crohn’s disease, celiac disease and short bowel syndrome), which require dietary guidelines for their treatment, need to be treated, because they also lead to kidney problems. And concludes d. Caroline Regada.

Written by Paula Amoroso

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