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Early CKD Support
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Newbie in UK ignorant of diet

I am 92 year old male and diabetic type 2 since c 2006, caring for myself. Recently discovered in a med summary that I was diagnosed CKD 4 and also was CKD 3 about two years ago without being told. What should the range of my test results be ? What do the tests' abbreviations stand for - GFR and all ? Are soya "milks" a good substitute for dairy products ? Without mentioning sodium, potassium, etc what are the most important foods to avoid and why ? And the best to go for ? Is tea damaging ? To save trouble, send www links, please ?

15 Replies

These should give you the information you are looking for:

National education, support and advocacy organizations:

• DaVita Kidney Disease and Dialysis Forums is well known for their recipes but they also have a forum for patients too.

• Renal Support Network provides many support and advocacy services including a phone support line.

• AAKP is a comprehensive resource focusing on the quality of life for kidney patients through education, advocacy, patient engagement and the fostering of patient communities.

• National Kidney Foundation provides a portal for patients too.

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I have found that Davita and AAKP have been very helpful on this CKD journey.


As we age the function of everyone's kidneys deteriorates. My doctors are mostly not supportive of the way we classify CKD. In most cases, certainly not all, you are put into a classification such as stage 3 for example, based only on the measurement of Creatinine in your blood. They take your blood. The measure the Creatinine. They look that number up on a chart, which includes your sex and age, and assign a classification. Without individual consideration of your weight, your other health restrictions. Probably every single person, in your age group, would be labelled with some level of CKD. After 65, most people have higher Creatinine. Due to your diabetes you are already on a healthy diet for both your kidneys and your diabetes. My doctor indicates to me to just avoid too much protein. Stick within the daily recommended requirements. And naturally, as everyone should, to limit salt intake. Even your own doctors did not specify to you that you are stage 3 or 4. You had to find it yourself. You are 92. You are obviously doing the right things. Just keep on doing what you are doing. And liquids (tea included) are great for your kidney. Just don't overdue the caffeine.


I am not sure that I can agree that everything on a diabetic diet is the same as what is on a renal diet. From what Inkwirer indicated, a couple of years ago he was at stage 3, now he is at stage 4. Though there is fluctuation, it makes sense to learn all he can regarding how to prevent further deterioration. Each of us must make our own decisions regarding what we want to do, and though we can provide advice, it is his decision and he needs to know the resources to research and make his own informed decision.


What you say is certainly correct. You must also though consider age. There is not a person walking on this earth who at the age of 92 has the same kidney function they had even 10 years ago. He obviously follows a great diet. One reason he is 92. I was NOT telling him I am your doctor and here is what to do. I was giving my opinion and my experience. That lots of liquids are beneficial (even tea, although water is a better choice) and to stick with his Diab diet. Lets face it. Any of us with CKD can help ourselves with following a good CKD diet. But will it prevent our stages from advancing over time? No. It may prevent a more rapid decline. But a cure? no. And really what is a CKD diet. Other than a few exceptions it is basically a common sense diet that a person should follow anyway. Fluids, low salt, easy on the sugar, protein but not in excess, avoid red meats, etc. I have a kidney doctor, a urologist, a primary care, and a oncologist. And they all basically say the same thing to me (for my position, which is not necessarily equal to everyone elses). That there are exclusions, but it does not mean never have them. Just do not overdue them. For example to avoid red meat does not mean you can't have it once a week, just not every day. To keep within daily nutrition requirements does not mean that once or twice a week you can splurge. CKD is not reversible. Watch yourself, follow basic groundrules as close as you can, but do not live your life with constant reminders or restrictions. Be sensible, but enjoy the time you have.


I have to disagree with your statement that following a ckd diet will not prevent our stages from advancing over time. By changing my diet and controlling the amount of sodium, potassium, phosphorous and protein that I eat, I have been able to improve my GFR from 36.6 to 54.0, and I am holding steady. There are others on this site who have also made improvements.


Thank you Rick for a kind and thoughtful reply. It helps me to worry a bit less about trying to merge Diab and CKd diets both with their long lists of exclusions. Shopping is drudgery. I am going to have some tiny stickers made, "I can't read what it contains so I am not buying it".

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Diet Tips for People with Diabetes and Kidney Disease

Diet is one of the most important treatments in managing diabetes and kidney disease. If you’ve been diagnosed with kidney disease as a result of diabetes, you’ll need to work with a dietitian to create an eating plan that’s right for you. This plan will help manage your blood glucose levels and reduce the amount of waste and fluid your kidneys process.

Which nutrients do I need to regulate?

Your dietitian will give you nutritional guidelines that tell you how much protein, fat and carbohydrate you can eat, as well as how much potassium, phosphorus and sodium you can have each day. Because your diet needs to be lower in these minerals, you’ll limit or avoid certain foods, while planning your meals.

Portion control is also important. Talk to your dietitian regarding tips for accurately measuring a serving size. What may be measured as one serving on a regular diet may count as three servings on the kidney diet.

Your doctor and dietitian will also recommend you eat meals and snacks of the same size and calorie/carbohydrate content at certain times of the day to keep your blood glucose at an even level. .It’s important to check blood glucose levels often and share the results with your doctor.

What can I eat?

Below is an example of food choices that are usually recommended on a typical renal diabetic diet. This list is based on sodium, potassium, phosphorus and high sugar content of foods included. Ask your dietitian if you can have any of these listed foods and make sure you know what the recommended serving size should be.

Carbohydrate Foods

Milk and nondairy


Skim or fat-free milk, non-dairy creamer, plain yogurt, sugar-free yogurt, sugar-free pudding, sugar-free ice cream, sugar-free nondairy frozen desserts*

*Portions of dairy products are often limited to 4 ounces due to high protein, potassium or phosphorus content

Chocolate milk, buttermilk, sweetened yogurt, sugar sweetened pudding, sugar sweetened ice cream, sugar sweetened nondairy frozen desserts

Breads and starches


White, wheat, rye, sourdough, whole wheat and whole grain bread, unsweetened, refined dry cereals, cream of wheat, grits, malt-o-meal, noodles, white or whole wheat pasta, rice, bagel (small), hamburger bun, unsalted crackers, cornbread (made from scratch), flour tortilla

Bran bread, frosted or sugar-coated cereals, instant cereals, bran or granola, gingerbread, pancake mix, cornbread mix, biscuits, salted snacks including: potato chips, corn chips and crackers Whole wheat cereals like wheat flakes and raisin bran, oatmeal, and whole grain hot cereals contain more phosphorus and potassium than refined products.

Fruits and juices


Apples, apple juice, applesauce, apricot halves, berries including: strawberries, raspberries, cranberries, blackberries and blueberries, low sugar cranberry juice, cherries, fruit cocktail, grapefruit, grapes, grape juice, kumquats, mandarin oranges, pears, pineapple, plums, tangerine, watermelon, fruit canned in unsweetened juice

Avocados, bananas, cantaloupe, dried fruits including: dates, raisins and prunes, fresh pears, honeydew melon, kiwis, kumquats, star fruit, mangos, papaya, nectarines, oranges and orange juice, pomegranate, fruit canned in syrup

Starchy vegetables


Corn, peas, mixed vegetables with corn and peas (eat these less often because they are high in phosphorus), potatoes (soaked to reduce potassium, if needed)

Baked potatoes, sweet potatoes, yams, baked beans, dried beans (kidneys, lima , lentil, pinto or soy), succotash, pumpkin, winter squash

Non-starchy vegetables


Asparagus, beets, broccoli, Brussels sprouts, carrots, cabbage, cauliflower, celery, cucumber, eggplant, frozen broccoli cuts, green beans, iceberg lettuce, kale, leeks, mustard greens, okra, onions, red and green peppers, radishes, raw spinach (1/2 cup), snow peas, summer squash, turnips

Artichoke, fresh bamboo shoots, beet greens, cactus, cooked Chinese cabbage, kohlrabi, rutabagas, sauerkraut , cooked spinach, tomatoes, tomato sauce or paste, tomato juice, vegetable juice

Higher-protein foods

Meats, cheeses and eggs


Lean cuts of meat, poultry, fish and seafood; eggs, low cholesterol egg substitute; cottage cheese (limited due to high sodium content)

Bacon, canned and luncheon meats, cheeses, hot dogs, organ meats, nuts, pepperoni, salami, salmon, sausage

Higher-fat foods

Seasoning and calories


Soft or tub margarine low in trans fats, mayonnaise, sour cream, cream cheese, low fat mayonnaise, low fat sour cream, low fat cream cheese

Bacon fat, back fat, butter, Crisco®, lard, shortening, margarines high in trans fats, whipping cream



Water, diet clear sodas, homemade tea or lemonade sweetened with an artificial sweetener

Regular or diet dark colas, beer, fruit juices, fruit-flavored drinks or water sweetened with fruit juices, bottled or canned iced tea or lemonade containing sugar, syrup, or phosphoric acid; tea or lemonade sweetened with real sugar

You may also be instructed to limit or avoid the following sweet and salty foods:


Chocolate Regular sugar




Baked goods

Ice cream

Canned foods


Onion, garlic or table salt

TV dinners

Meat tenderizer




Salted chips and snacks

If you need extra help navigating the diabetes diet when you have kidney disease, sign up for the DaVita Diet Helper™, the easy-to-use online diet management tool.


Do you by any chance work for Davita? Here's a good one for you: Type 1 diabetic for 40 years, kidney failure 30 months ago, rarely eats anything of substance but relies upon Lucozade and Glucogel to maintain blood sugars, vegetarian and an alcoholic. Persistent urinary tract infections and pain when lower left of hip is pressed. Blood sugars generally not too bad but can go from 1.8 to 2.2 now and again.


No I do not, and I have stated several times on this forum that I often have issues with sodium, potassium and phosphorous levels in some of the Davita recipes.


Apologies. I was purely wondering about easy ways to include vitamins when one is not easily able to consume solid foods. There are certain drinks such as a Weetabix drink and one called c20 which I was briefly using.


I smiled at the thought of actually having a dietitian, or a doctor who has ever given any advice about CKD. All my advice or information comes from personal research.

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Amen! Same here!

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At the age of 92 is very unlikely that you have “true” kidney disease. Kidney disease has to be one of the most over diagnosed diseases on the planet. Fact is, at 92 your kidneys are likely in bad shape, as well they should be. They ain’t meant to last forever. In my honest opinion your situation comes down to symptom management. How do you feel? Do you have kidney pain? Are your able to make urine on a regular bases? Are you legs or hands or face swollen? If not I wouldn’t worry. Just be sensible with your diet, but eat what ya want basically. And if your still able, stay physically active. At your age that would be far more beneficial then a restricted diet in my opinion. But in the end. You should always follow your doctors advice. That said, I bet you couldn’t find a doctor anywhere that would recommend a renal diet to a 90+ year old patient unless you we’re symptomatic.


Lowraind. I am highly impressed by your comprehensive list of foods when dealing with kidney disease. I am using my iPhone and wanted to copy it but cannot find a way to do it. How can i save it for future reference?


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