The kidney is a pair of vital organs in the body that perform a lot of functions. They help in filtering waste products from the body, which is later passed out as urine and also helps in balancing fluids in the body as well as releasing hormones that help to regulate blood pressure in the body. For an organ that plays such major roles, many people do not think about their kidneys until something goes wrong.
Kidney disease is an often serious condition that could even lead to death. Sometimes, the person suffering from the disease may require a kidney transplant, as one or even both of their kidneys may have stopped functioning as they should. Many things, including diabetes, obesity, high blood pressure, and habits such as smoking, increases the chances of kidney disease.
One of the things you can do to prevent kidney failure is to follow a healthy diet. There are some foods that benefit the kidney, due to the nutrients they contain. Including such foods in your diet would help to reduce the chances of kidney failure. A good diet for people kidney diseases involves reducing the intake of some nutrients. Kidney disease patients should reduce the intake of foods high in sodium, potassium, and protein.
Below, we have outlined some foods that are good for the kidney. These are some of the healthy Nigerian foods for kidney patients with diseases.
Fish like salmon, tuna, and sardines, are great for kidney health because they contain Omega-3 fatty acids, which is a very healthy kind of fat. Omega-3 fatty acids help to lower fat levels in the blood as well as lower blood pressure levels, which is very important to help prevent kidney disease. Eating foods that can help the body lower blood pressure is very important, whether one is sure they have high blood pressure or not.
2. Dark Leafy Vegetables
Adding dark leafy vegetables like spinach to your diet adds a lot of nutrients to what you are eating. Vegetables are packed with a range of nutrients, including antioxidants, which offers your body protection. Here in Nigeria, we use a lot of these dark leafy vegetables for our cooking, they include, bitter leaf, spinach, fluted pumpkin leaves, and scent leaf. If you are not one who ordinarily likes these vegetables, you should think about your kidney and start including them in your diet.
Fruits like pineapples, apples, and strawberries contain fibre, vitamin C, and are low in potassium, which makes them great for your kidney. They are also sweet fruits which are a far healthier option than settling for processed foods that are loaded with refined sugar. If you do not like eating fruits, then you can blend them into juice or a smoothie to make them easier to enjoy.
4. Sweet Potato
Eating sweet potato is also good for your kidney since it is rich in fibre, which reduces the spike in your blood sugar levels. It also contains potassium, which is good for counteracting the effect of sodium on the kidney. But it is important to remember that your kidney does not need a lot of potassium, especially for people with chronic kidney disease.
5. Garlic and Onions
If you are looking for a way to reduce your sodium intake, you can try replacing your regular salt with onions and garlic. They add flavour to your food and also contain nutrients like vitamin C, manganese, B vitamins, as well as anti-inflammatory properties, all of which would do your body a lot of good.
Staying hydrated does a lot of good to your kidneys. The kidney uses water to filter toxins from the bloodstream and also to process urine. If you want to prevent kidney disease, drink water regularly, even before you feel thirsty.
7. Olive Oil
Olive oil is very rich in monounsaturated fats,, which may improve your ‘good’ cholesterol level and reduce your risk of developing cardiovascular disease. This oil is also a healthy choice for people with kidney disease. It is phosphorus-free, and has very low sodium.
Cabbages are packed with vitamin K, vitamin C and fiber. They are also an excellent source of vitamin B6, and folic acid. This cruciferous vegetable is low in potassium, and sodium, which makes it a perfect addition to the kidney diet. There are many other amazing health benefits of cabbages.