Skip to content
My WebMD Sign In, Sign Up

Information and Resources

Step 1 of 6
Action Set
Kidney Disease: Changing Your Diet

When you have kidney disease, your kidneys are no longer working as well as they need to. Changing your diet can help protect your kidneys. It can also help you control other diseases, such as diabetes and high blood pressure, that can make kidney disease worse.

This topic can give you some general ideas about how to follow the diet your doctor or dietitian recommends.

Note: These diet tips are not for you if you are on dialysis or have had a kidney transplant. Follow the special diet your doctor gave you.

Key points

  • Most people who have kidney disease need to limit salt (sodium), fluids, and protein. Some also have to limit potassium and phosphorus.
  • There is no one diet that is right for everyone who has kidney disease. Your doctor or dietitian can tailor a diet for you based on how well your kidneys are working.
  • It may be hard to change your diet. You may have to give up many foods you like. But it is very important to make the recommended changes so you can stay healthy for as long as possible.
  • You need to get enough calories to be healthy and have energy. If you have a hard time eating enough, talk to your doctor or dietitian about ways to add calories to your diet.
  • Your diet may change over time as your disease changes. See your doctor for regular testing, and work with a dietitian to adjust your diet as needed.

what.gif  What foods do you need to limit?
why.gif Why should you follow a diet for kidney disease?
how.gif How to eat when you have kidney disease
where.gif Where to go from here

Return to topic:

Up Next in This Action Set:
By Healthwise Staff
Primary Medical Reviewer Anne C. Poinier, MD - Internal Medicine
Specialist Medical Reviewer Mitchell H. Rosner, MD - Nephrology
Last Revised May 10, 2013

WebMD Medical Reference from Healthwise

Last Updated: May 10, 2013
This information is not intended to replace the advice of a doctor. Healthwise disclaims any liability for the decisions you make based on this information.

Hot Topics

Health Solutions From Our Sponsors

WebMD Video: Now Playing

Click here to wach video: Dirty Truth About Hand Washing

Which sex is the worst about washing up? Why is it so important? We’ve got the dirty truth on how and when to wash your hands.

Click here to watch video: Dirty Truth About Hand Washing

Popular Slideshows & Tools on WebMD

tea
What you should eat.
Woman sitting in front of UV lights
Is yours working?
woman using breath spray
What's causing yours?
colon xray
Get the facts.
MS Overview
Recognizing symptoms.
bowl of yogurt with heart shape
Eat for a healthy heart.
woman doing pushups
To help you get fit.
Colored x-ray of tooth decay
Know what to look for.
Woman sitting with child
Do you know the symptoms?
fruit drinks
Foods that can help you focus.
Sad dog and guacamole
Don't feed this to your dog.
Thyroid exam
See how much you know.

Women's Health Newsletter

Find out what women really need.