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Misconceptions about restricting meat, dairy, whole grains, or beans with kidney disease.

June 13, 20242 min read

Misconceptions about restricting meat, dairy, whole grains, or beans with kidney disease.


There is a common misconception that certain foods like meat, dairy, whole grains, or beans should be strictly avoided with kidney disease. However, this often leads to unnecessary restrictions and can be frustrating for those who love these foods.

Imagine being told you can't have foods you love. It's natural to crave them even more when they're off-limits. It's easier for some to say "just don't eat that" rather than taking the time to show you how you can still enjoy these foods safely.

For example, let's say you're a vegetarian who relies heavily on beans and legumes for protein. You've been told to limit potassium and phosphorus, which are found in high amounts in beans. You might feel lost and unsure of how to meet your protein needs without compromising your kidney health.

Or perhaps you're someone who loves whole grains and has been told to limit phosphorus. You might be frustrated by the idea of giving up whole grains entirely, as they are a staple in your diet.

In another scenario, you might be a cheese lover who has been advised to limit sodium and phosphorus. You might be struggling to find ways to enjoy cheese without overdoing it on these nutrients.

The truth is, it's not the food itself that harms your kidneys, but rather the amounts and combinations used. No food is inherently good or bad; it's about how you work with them to stay within your limitations that is key.

For example, if you're allowed 900 milligrams of phosphorus per day, you can eat any food containing phosphorus until you reach that limit.

It can be incredibly frustrating to be told you cannot have so many foods you rely upon. In each of these cases, the key is to work with me so I can help you navigate your dietary restrictions and find creative ways to incorporate your favorite foods into your kidney-friendly diet. With the right guidance, you can still enjoy a variety of foods while managing your kidney disease.

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How to Eat for CKD

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A portion of all book proceeds are donated to American Kidney Fund. Linda also donates to Puerto Rico Rise Up.

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