Can You Eat Whole Wheat Bread With Kidney Disease?
Podcast #71 Released on January 24, 2018
Eating whole wheat or white bread. Which is better? Why does it matter? What is the issue with it?
On kidney disease diet you have a lot of unlearning to do. There's a lot of foods that are healthy for you if you don't have kidney disease that you may have to change a little bit when you do find out you have kidney disease.
One of those things is the concept of potassium and phosphorus so there's a lot of difference in the amount of potassium and phosphorus between whole wheat bread and regular white bread.
First, I want to help you to understand what is a whole wheat bread versus a regular white bread. Whole wheat bread says exactly that it says, whole wheat on it. If it just says wheat bread then it's probably just white bread with brown coloring. They do that a lot to make you think you're eating healthier and you're not. It is similar to white bread.
When you look at bread, if it says wheat bread is not even doing you any good to eat it but if you do look at it and it says whole wheat bread or whole grain or seven grain that type of thing, that's whole wheat bread and that's the bread that's different.
There are lots of vegetables that you should be eating as if you are following a dash diet which is what you follow with stage 1 or stage 2 kidney disease then you really eat more fruits and vegetables, you eat 5 to 10 servings a day. You eat lots of carrots, lots of tomatoes, lots of fresh fruits like plums and oranges, limes and all those things.
When you get to stage 3, stage 4, you want to manage those and need to lower potassium and phosphorus foods. You don't have to cut out potassium and phosphorus and you don't have to necessarily pay attention too much to those foods until your doctor says that that is something you need to manage and that's usually later on in stage 4 and stage 5 kidney disease.
This whole question revolves around potassium and phosphorus restriction. Because white bread and wheat bread and whole wheat bread in and of themselves are carbohydrates. Carbohydrate doesn't necessarily damage your kidneys unless you have diabetes and if you have diabetes, you want to manage the number of servings that you have with carbohydrates but not necessarily whether its white or wheat bread.
Going over the specifics, white bread has about half of the potassium and phosphorus, maybe even a third of potassium and phosphorus that whole wheat bread has. It just depends on what exactly the whole wheat bread is. Obviously, if you eat that it's within your diet, if it's within your manageable calories and carbs then it can matter because you can eat more of the white bread than just the whole wheat bread if you're following a potassium or phosphorus restriction.
It's just important to know that the whole distinction is about potassium and phosphorus. If you're not on a restriction, then it's better for you to eat a higher fiber food which is the whole grain, whole wheat bread then it is for you to eat just white bread which is really the equivalent of sugar when you eat it.
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