How can I keep my potassium level from getting too high if I have CKD?

If you have chronic kidney disease (CKD) there are a number of ways to keep your potassium level from getting too high.
  • Limit foods that are high in potassium. Your renal dietitian will help you plan your diet.
  • Eat a variety of foods, but in moderation.
  • If you want to include some high potassium vegetables in your diet, leach them before using. Leaching is a process that pulls some potassium out of the vegetable. Check with your dietitian on the amount of leached vegetables that can be safely included in your diet.
  • Do not drink or use the liquid from canned fruits and vegetables, or the juices from cooked meat.
  • Remember that almost all foods have some potassium. The size of the serving is very important. A large amount of a low-potassium food can turn into a high-potassium food.
  • If you are on dialysis, be sure not to miss the treatments or exchanges prescribed. This is extremely important to your long-term health.
A normal amount of potassium in a typical diet of a healthy American is about 3,500 to 4,500 milligrams (mg) per day. A potassium-restricted diet is typically about 2,000 milligrams (mg) per day. Your doctor or dietitian will tell you the specific level of restriction you need. A kidney dietitian is trained to help you with your diet in order to prevent complications from CKD.
If you have chronic kidney disease (CKD) or are dialysis you should avoid the following high-potassium foods:
  • Fruits: apricots, bananas, cantaloupes, dried fruits, honey dew melons, kiwifruits, mangos, oranges, papayas, tamarinds
  • Vegetables: acorn squash, artichokes, avocados, broccoli, squash, dark leafy greens, guacamole, Hubbard squash, mushrooms, nopales, potatoes, spinach, sweet potatoes, Brussels sprouts
  • Dried beans: black beans, black-eyed peas, chickpeas, garbanzo beans, lentils, kidney beans, lima beans, navy beans, pinto beans, red beans, refried beans, soybeans, white beans
  • Dairy: dried milk, fluid milk (whole, 2% skim, butter, goat) 

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.