| Dialysis | Kidney disease | Transplant

Nourish Your Kidneys With 5 Spring Superfoods to Incorporate into Your Diet

May 09, 2023, 8:14am EDT

Person smiling while picking out produce

Here are five foods to help you celebrate the changing season. Just make sure you speak with a kidney dietitian before changing or adding anything new to your diet.

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Low-phosphorus cheese

1. Avocados

Halved avocado on cutting board

Avocados are nutrient-dense fruit containing 20 different vitamins, minerals, and monounsaturated fat, which may help reduce bad cholesterol and inflammation. 

Avocados don’t have high amounts of phosphorus or sodium but are considered high-potassium food. Many people on hemodialysis can have high-potassium foods if they are mindful of how much potassium they eat overall. For people on daily-home dialysis or peritoneal dialysis, you’ll likely need more dietary potassium to replace what is lost from dialysis. Work with a kidney dietitian to find the right balance for you.

Serving size: 1/3 of a whole avocado

Calories 84
Protein  1 g
Carbohydrates 4 g
Sugars 0 g
Fiber 3 g
Fat 8 g
Sodium 4 mg
Phosphorus 27 mg

Get an avocado and pea guacamole recipe.

2. Strawberries 

Tipped over basket of ripe strawberries

Strawberries are sweet and tart fruit naturally low in calories, potassium, and phosphorus. They’re jam-packed with vitamin c, manganese, and antioxidants. If you struggle to keep your strawberries from going moldy, try these tips.

How to store strawberries:

  1. Put a paper towel at the bottom of the container you store strawberries in to absorb extra moisture. 
  2. Avoid rinsing strawberries until you plan to eat them. 
  3. Freeze fresh whole or sliced strawberries on a sheet pan in a single layer—once solid, place in a freezer bag for up to 6 months.  

Get a strawberry protein salad recipe.

3. Broccoli

Top down view of broccoli in a bowl

Broccoli is a versatile vegetable that can be enjoyed cooked or raw. It’s also a fantastic source of antioxidants that may help reduce inflammation, improve blood sugar control, and promote heart health.

Broccoli is full of:

  • Fiber
  • Vitamins C and K
  • Iron
  • Potassium
  • Calcium

Get more broccoli nutritional facts

4. Apples

Three types of apples spread across a cutting board

Apples contain a great source of fiber, vitamin C, and antioxidants–eating the peel on apples gives you two to six times the antioxidants as without! They are also low in calories and may help control blood sugar if chosen over fruit juice. 

Type of apple Flavor profile Uses
Ambrosia Sweet and crisp Baking, eating, salad
Braeburn Sweet and hard Eating, salad, sauce, baking
Granny Smith Tart and firm  Baking, eating
Honeycrisp Sweet and crisp Eating, salad, dipping
Red Delicious Sweet and firm Eating, salad

Get a cinnamon-stewed apple recipe.

5. Low-phosphorus cheeses

Cheese and herb spread on charcuterie board

There are numerous delicious kinds of cheese, but many are high in potassium, sodium, and saturated fat, making them less-than-ideal for people with kidney disease. However, you may be able to incorporate some low-fat, low-phosphorus cheeses into a kidney-disease diet. 

Cheese Serving size Phosphorus Sodium Potassium Protein
Cream cheese 2 tbsp 32 mg 96 mg 37 mg 1.8 g
Ricotta cheese ¼ cup 49 mg 26 mg 136 mg 3.5 g
Goat cheese (soft) 1 oz 72 mg 103 mg 7 mg 5.2 g
Monterey jack cheese 1 oz 124 mg 150 mg 25 mg 6.9 g
Muenster cheese 1 oz 130 mg 174 mg 38 mg 6.6 g

Find more kidney-disease-friendly cheeses

Find the perfect recipe

View our kidney superfoods or get more kidney-friendly recipes.

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