Fact or Myth: Is a High-Acid Diet Risky for People with Kidney Disease?

This is a FACT.

According to Dr. Ernesto Molmenti, surgical director at North Shore University Hospital Transplant Center in Manhasset, N.Y, at least 26 million Americans have chronic kidney disease (CKD). Experts have long conjectured that high-acid diets (heavy in meat) aggravate kidney dysfunction, a disease that interferes with the kidney’s ability to eliminate acid from the body. A new study published in the Journal of the American Society of Nephrology supports this suspicion. Patients with chronic kidney disease who consumed a high-acid diet (mostly meat) were three times as likely to develop kidney failure as CKD patients who consumed a low-acid diet (rich in fruits and vegetables).

kidneyProtect Your Kidneys with Fruits and Veggies

Researchers analyzed data collected from 1,486 patients participating in the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (NHANES III) for an average of 14.2 years. High levels of dietary acid strongly correlated with a significantly higher progression to kidney failure.

Lead researcher Tanushree Banerjee, PhD (UC San Francisco) suggests that patients diagnosed with kidney dysfunction reduce their intake of meat and substantially increase their consumption of fruits and vegetables. She explains:

“Patients with chronic kidney disease may want to pay more attention to diet consumption of acid rich foods to reduce progression to kidney failure, in addition to employing recommended guidelines such as taking kidney-sparing medication and avoiding kidney toxins. The high costs and suboptimal quality of life that dialysis treatments bring may be avoided by adopting a more healthy diet that is rich in fruits and vegetables.”