I'm trying to figure out how to get a healthy diet with stage 5 food limitations. Adjusting my diet to reduce potassium was hard enough, but then I got told I also need to adjust again to limit phosphorus.

As I tried to adjust, I found that I was stuffing myself with white bread, white rice and pasta, but not getting enough proteins or veggies.

So I did some research to try to figure out how to get more protein and veggies into my diet and lower the glycemic load from all that white starch.

Here are three tips I discovered. Would love to hear yours!

1) Egg whites are a rare source of protein that are relatively low in phosphorus. They're high-ish in potassium though so be aware of that. (Avoid the yolks though - phosphorus poison!)
2) Corn grits and couscous are both low in potassium and phosphorus but with a lower glycemic load than white bread, white rice and white pasta.
3) Olives are low in phosphorus and potassium and a good source of healthy fats since avocados and salmon become more restricted. Most are super-high in sodium though, so find ones with lower sodium content.

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I'm not sure it's entirely possible to stay completely within the diet guidelines for a late stage kidney diet and still consider it "healthy". After transplant I had a lot of food cravings that I think were caused by not being able to eat properly for the year I was on hemo and the many years I was in ESRD.

I found my go-to nod to health was apples. They do have potassium (obviously but a medium Granny Smith apple has about 210 mg of potassium. Do-able if you are budgeting your K carefully. And the fibre helped to keep things moving.

I think eating meat in moderation (if you eat meat) works. And I mean small portions, so a max. of 4 oz per day. MAX.  I also enjoyed a meal of spaghetti & tomato sauce once in a while. The key is just use a SMALL amount of sauce. I found that I'd rather have a plate of spaghetti with a couple tablespoons of sauce rather than a plate with a heap of red pepper sauce. The flavour is still there, even with nowhere near the normal amount of sauce. Then add some salad and garlic bread and you're good to go.

If you look into it, you can turn a typ. high potassium meal into a low to moderate one just by reducing the potassium ingredient. I make my own pizza with ONE tablespoon of sauce, limited cheese (very) and veggies. Again, I'd rather have the taste of a tiny bit of real sauce and cheese, than gobs of red-pepper or pesto sauce. (not that they can't be tasty)

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