Hi, everyone. I had my labs done on 4/22/19 and I just got the results online today on 4/26/19. As promised to some of my fellow CKDers, I will put up my lab results after starting a mostly vegan/the rest vegetarian diet modified for CKD.
Before I put up my lab results (can't you tell that I am excited and that they will be good? Oh, wait... the title of the post gave it away), let me briefly tell you what got me going to educate and take care of myself and how I learned what to do.
My last three sets of labs before 4/22/19 showed a worsening GFR with each lab. On some whim in late January of 2019 I Googled "Stage 3 CKD Life Expectancy" since my former San Diego, CA PCP and a renowned La Jolla, CA (where a lot of rich people live - not I) nephrologist both told me my kidneys would last me the rest of my life at Stage 3A when I was in my early 50s. I saw the mortality table (Table 1) in the article I found (https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5203814/) and it read that I had about another 7-8 years of life left at Stage 3B now being 60 years old. My only hope was that the numbers from the mortality table had a 95% confidence interval, which means there are 5% of wiggle room. And my goal was to be in that top 5%.
After a good cry within a few seconds of looking at the mortality table, and I am a man who was raised not to cry, I decided to educate myself, eat the proper CKD Diet and lose weight. After hours of online research and then looking to Amazon for a good CKD book to buy I stumbled upon Stopping Kidney Disease by Lee Hull which came out on January 14, 2019 - I was looking for an up to date book. It already had many impressive reviews on Amazon. I bought the book and read it - if you are going to buy this book, please buy the paperback so you can quickly flip within and between sections of chapters.
The first thirty three chapters of this book will educate you on what CKD is, its causes and each chapter focuses on a different aspect. All of the research is backed up by published medical case studies - included in the book - which you can skim or skip. At this point in the book you will know more about CKD than most PCPs since they are not specialists. Starting in Chapter 34 Mr. Hull outlines a very healthy Vegan style eating plan adapted to CKD and he explains why it works! After finishing the book you will know more about CKD nutrition than most PCPs and nephrologists since they are not nutritionists. Even if you don't believe or want to do the Vegan diet, the first thirty-three chapters explain CKD with the latest information. You will find everything useful and accurate that you can Google about CKD all in one book.
I started eating healthy on 2/1/19 following Mr. Hull's book and exercising (walking or riding a recumbent bike). The labs were done on 4/22/19. Here are the relevant numbers for CKD and a couple of extras:
Creatinine 1.37 mg/dL
BUN 13 mg/dL
BUN/Creatinine Ratio 9
GFR 56 mL/min/1.73m2 (Stage 3A!!)
Albumin 4.6 gm/dL
Total Cholesterol 129 mg/dL
A1C 5.1 % of total Hgb
On 12/28/18, my creatinine was 1.66, my BUN was 26, my GFR was 44 (Stage 3B), and my Albumin was 4.2!
So after about 12 weeks of following Mr. Hull's advice, I jumped back to Stage 3A and I am just shy of Stage 2 which starts at 60 mL/min/1.73m2! I also lost thirty pounds! Thank you, Mr. Hull!
I did make one mistake in the twelve weeks. My wife and I went to a Gem show at the California Gem museum on 4/14/19 just before my labs were done. I went inside one of the buildings while she sat outside. When I came out she told me a kind gentleman gave her a large carne asada (beef) burrito because he had bought one too many from one of the food vendors. I was hungry and I am human, so we split it. I will always wonder if I could have hit a GFR of 60 if I hadn't eaten half of that large carne asada burrito stuffed with beef and only beef.
I believe everyone can benefit from educating himself or herself, exercising, weight loss (if needed) and eating a proper CKD diet. And please don't dampen my post by stating that this eating plan worked for me and it might not work for everyone else - all of the latest medical research shows that a vegan or vegetarian diet coupled with exercise and weight loss will improve CKD and other morbid conditions as well. Thank you for reading.