As a person in need of a renal diabetic diet, It’s important to realize that a lot of the people experiencing a stage of kidney failure, whether it’s stage 1 kidney disease up to stage 5 kidney disease, are also diabetics.
The best selling meal plan I have is the one that combines renal (Kidney disease) with diabetes (called a renal diabetic diet) to control for both protein and carbohydrate. If you are looking for a meal pattern for the entire day and 7 new meals a week, look no further – read about it on our information page.
But, I also know that a lot of people just plain don’t understand diabetes in the first place, then you add kidney disease and it’s an overwhelming task to manage a renal diabetic diet.
It’s a well known fact that diabetes results in all kinds of problems in your body, from eye damage to nerve damage to kidney damage. All of this is a result of having too much sugar in your blood and not using it properly. Over time, the sugar attached to cells that it’s not supposed to and causes those cells to not work the way they are supposed to.
For example, in your kidneys you have a very thin layer of cells that filter your blood to remove the waste products and create urine. As your kidneys start to fail, you lose some of this capacity. And kidneys fail at the blood vessel level – known as capillaries – because they are vulnerable. You can live fairly well and not realize you have kidney disease until you only have 30% of the function of your kidneys left. You can limit further damage by following a renal diabetic diet plan. But most people on dialysis will tell you how important kidney function is and how it feels to lose it. Not the end of the world, but difficult to say the least.
The best thing to do when you know you are starting to develop kidney problems due to your diabetes is to start tightly managing your diabetes as part of your renal diabetic diet plan.
1. This means, you should start taking your blood sugars more often. Know what it is when you wake up and after meals (most people take it 1 hour after they start eating – not after they finish). Track these numbers by writing them down. Once you have a week’s worth of tracking and documenting, as well as making sure that you are taking your medication properly, then you need to discuss with your doctor what methods you can use to control your blood sugars better. Following a renal diabetic diet will mean that you have to track and document to make sure you are on track.
2. You can learn what foods are high in carbohydrate – and low in fiber – and limit your intake of them. It’s vitally important to understand that eating foods that are high in fiber can help you tremendously when controlling your renal diabetic diet. The fiber slows your absorption of sugar from the foods that you eat, and allows your body more time to respond. So things like sugary colas and fruit juice should be gone from your diet. You may believe that you need them to manage your blood sugars (oh, if I get too low) but the best thing to do for that is to eat a fruit or 1/2 a sandwich and wait 15-20 minutes. Your body will take the sugar from these foods and manage better than if you shocked it with a can of sugar. And even better, make sure that you eat your planned meals on time and in the right amounts.
I believe that one of the best ways to control blood sugars is through a significant reduction in the simple sugar and low fiber foods that you eat. Aside from just not eating too much, you can feel fuller by managing your meals throughout the day.
3. Finally, exercise. I am aware that you may have a heart condition or limitation otherwise. Ask your doctor, but I have seen plenty of people do chair aerobics and other sitting type exercises that improve their muscle strength and aerobic capacity. Check a video out from the library if you don’t have anything that you feel you can do. Yoga is a great exercise and you don’t realize how much it helps with strength and aerobic capacity. If you can’t do yoga, find some thing that you can do. It’s vital to your survival. And, it burns calories so you can lower your blood sugar levels at the same time which helps control your renal diabetic diet. Voila!
I know it’s a long post, but a key ingredient in helping out your kidneys to reduce the risk of being put on dialysis is to manage your diabetes. Control your blood sugars. Eat high fiber types of carbohydrates – learn about whole grains and eat more of them. Eat whole fruit instead of fruit juices. It all adds up to a healthier lifestyle for your management of a renal diabetic diet.