A diabetic renal diet is a nutritional plan to be followed by diabetics who also have kidney disease. Over 50 percent of those with chronic kidney disease are also diabetic, underscoring the importance of diabetic patients following a diabetic renal diet. In some cases, the diet is designed for patients already in various stages of renal failure. In other cases, the diet is designed for a diabetic to follow to try and prevent renal problems from occurring. Diabetics often have difficulty eating properly for their diabetes and their kidney issues.
The primary goal of the diabetic diet is to maintain consistent, acceptable blood sugar levels. This is most easily achieved by eating at the same time each day, not skipping meals, and choosing low glycemic carbohydrate foods. Including the same amount of carbohydrates in each meal will help the body maintain blood sugar levels without the peaks and valleys seen with uncontrolled diabetes. Examples of low glycemic carbohydrates include brown rice and sweet potatoes. Sweet potatoes and whole grain breads, however, are high in potassium and should be avoided as part of a diabetic renal diet plan.
A renal diet focuses on reducing the amount of sodium, potassium, and phosphorous in the daily diet. The diabetic can eat a blood sugar reduction diet, while at the same time maintaining a renal diet plan. Sodium is in many foods; therefore, patients should learn to read labels and search for foods with low sodium content. In addition, renal diet experts often discourage patients from drinking coffee and dark-colored diet sodas. The sodium content of such products are too high for a diabetic, renal patient to safely consume on a regular basis.
Clear diet sodas, water, and unsweetened teas are typically allowed on diabetic renal diet plan. Vegetables such as cabbage, eggplant, beets, cauliflower, and broccoli are generally recommended for diabetic diets and renal diets because of their high vitamin content and low potassium and carbohydrate content. High-sodium meats including bacon, sausage, and organ meats should also be avoided.
Raw vegetables are preferable to canned vegetables for many reasons, including vitamin potency; however, with a diabetic renal diet, it becomes especially important, as canned vegetables are typically very high in sodium content. Several sessions with a certified nutritionist can provide the diabetic renal patient with an overview of foods he or she should enjoy as well as those that should be avoided. Portion control is also important when it comes to blood sugar control, and a nutritionist will help the patient learn about portion sizes.