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Glomerular filtration rate (GFR) is an indication of how much damage has been done to the kidneys and determine the stage of Kidney Disease. The earlier kidney disease is detected, the better chances of slowing progression of disease and restoring renal function. For people with early stages, dietary changes coupled with medicine can help extend the life of the kidneys. Talk with your doctor before changing your diet and to determine of best medicine for your condition.
I. Increase the intake of water unless you are undergoing Dialysis. Trade other drinks like soda for water. Drink one small alcoholic beverage a day for a female and two small daily for a male. Consult your doctor about the best daily intake of fluid.
II. Reduce the amount of sodium intake. This is important for people on or without dialysis. With poor kidney health, excess sodium and fluid will accumulate in the body. Substitute spices and herbs for table salt. Choose fresh meats instead of cured meats. Choose prepackaged low-sodium foods. Check food labels on processed, canned and frozen foods.
III. Limit fatty and high-calorie foods you consume, as high-caloric, fatty foods increase one's risk for high blood pressure and obesity, which in turn are risk factors for deteriorating kidney disease. Choose lean meat instead of fatty cuts. Cut back on the amount of oil, margarine, butter, salad dressing, etc. Choose low-fat dairy products and mono- and polyunsaturated fats.
IV. Eat more fruits and vegetables as well as whole grain foods, such as whole-wheat pasta and bread instead of products like white bread made of refined grains.
V. Adjust the protein intake. For people who have not start dialysis, the recommended daily amount of protein is 1g per 2.2 pounds of body weight. If you are undergoing dialysis, consume 8-10 oz. of protein daily, or the amount suggested by your doctor.