Diet & Symptoms of Stage 3 Kidney Disease

A person with Stage 3 CKD has kidney damage with a moderate decrease in the GFR of 30-59 ml/min. As kidney function declines, waste products and toxins begin to build up in the blood. Once toxins reach a certain level, uremia occurs and complications of kidney disease such as high blood pressure, anemia (a shortage of red blood cells) and/or early bone disease are more likely.
Symptoms of kidney disease stage 3 are:
-Fatigue- feeling tired all of the time is common for those with CKD and is often a result of anemia.
-To much fluid retention- The kidneys can lose their ability to balance how much fluid remains in the body, causing edema( swelling) in their lower body, hands or face and can even cause shortness of breath.
- Changes in Urinary Function- Urine can become dark orange and can contain blood if there is too much protein present. This causes infrequent or frequent urination in patients.
- Back Pain- It is common that those who suffer from CKD to have lower and mid back pain.
- Insomnia- Troubled sleep patterns are often prevalent with CKD and may experience muscle cramping or restless leg syndrome that will interfere with their sleep patterns.
Someone in stage 3 may also be referred to a dietitian. Because diet is such an important part of treatment, the dietitian will review a person’s lab work results and recommend a meal plan individualized for their needs. Eating a proper diet can help preserve kidney function and overall health. For stage 3 a dietitian will usually recommend eating a healthy diet withprotein at the Daily Reference Intake (DRI) level of 0.8 grams protein per kilogram body, the same level recommended for all healthy people. Special attention may be given to the quality of protein eaten. Phosphorus may be limited to help keep blood phosphorus or PTH normal and prevent renal bone disease. Controlling phosphorus may also help preserve existing kidney function. Calcium may be limited if blood levels are too high. Potassium is usually not restricted in stage 3 CKD unless blood levels are high. The dietitian will also take into consideration if the patient has diabetes and provide tips on limiting carbohydrates in their diet. They may also recommend a diet low in sodium for those with high blood pressure orfluid retention. Supplementation with water soluble vitamins may be recommended. Vitamin C may be limited to 100 mg per day from supplements. Nutrients like Vitamin A and some minerals may not be recommended because levels can build up in the blood as kidney function declines. The dietitian may recommend avoiding over the counter dietary supplements unless approved by the nephrologist. It is helpful to work with a registered renal dietitian because as the stages of CKD change, so will the diet.
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