Your kidneys are responsible for helping your body filter waste out of your system, so keeping them healthy is an important part of your lifestyle. Just as with any of your bodily systems, your kidneys need a certain amount of various vitamins and minerals to operate properly.
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If you have some type of kidney disorder, it’s vital to take proper care of your kidneys. Even if your kidneys are functional properly, it’s necessary to eat foods that help keep your kidneys working optimally. Including these foods in your diet can help.
Berries And Grapes
Both of these types of berries are great choices for healthy kidneys because of their antioxidant content. Antioxidants are important because they help prevent kidney damage and can slow the progression of certain types of kidney disease.
Blueberries can be eaten raw by the handful or added to cereal, oatmeal or pancakes. Cranberries aren’t generally eaten raw, but can be used in baked goods and to make sauces for meat or fish.
Strawberries and raspberries are also prime choices when it comes to antioxidant content. They are great raw as a snack or mixed into muffins or sweetbreads. They also add a refreshing flavor and color to spinach salad.
Research shows that grapes are nearly as beneficial as berries, no matter their color.
Red Bell Peppers
All types of bell peppers are great for overall health due to their vitamin C and fiber content, but red bell peppers are especially good for kidney health. They have a higher concentration of vitamin C than other colors of bell peppers. Vitamin C is a type of antioxidant and aids in an overall healthy body, making it an important nutrient for several aspects of your health, kidneys included. Eat red bell peppers raw in salads or on sandwiches, or use them to beef up the nutrient content of vegetable soup or casseroles.
The reason why cauliflower is so good for the kidneys, besides its antioxidant content, is that it contains phytonutrients that combat oxidation. Oxidation causes inflammation within the body and can contribute to poor kidney function in some people.
Cauliflower, both cooked and raw, helps ward off this problem. It’s beneficial added to vegetable salads or soup and has a mild flavor that easily complements many other ingredients.
Cabbage belongs to the cruciferous family of vegetables, which also includes broccoli and cauliflower. In addition to cabbage’s phytonutrient content, it’s also low in potassium, which makes it a good choice for someone on a kidney-healthy diet.
Cabbage is easy to prepare, and it can be served raw in salads or cooked as a stir-fry or side dish.
Cherries contain a very specific type of antioxidant called anthocyanins, which are what give cherries their color. This type of antioxidant plays several roles in kidney health. It combats oxidation, which makes it beneficial for treating and slowing degenerative diseases, including those that affect the kidneys. Cherries are also anti-inflammatory, another reason why cherries are great for keeping your kidneys healthy.
Fish is a healthy addition to anyone’s diet for many reasons. When it comes to your kidneys, fish is a prime choice because it contains protein and omega-3 fatty acids, both of which can help your kidneys function properly.
Fish also fights inflammation in your body. The American Heart Association recommends eating fish at least twice per week to get the most benefit from it.
Onions And Garlic
These fragrant foods are good for many aspects of your health, your kidneys included. The sulfur in garlic helps fight oxidation and inflammation, helping your body efficiently eliminate waste.
Onions are a great source of the antioxidant quercetin, which also has anti-inflammatory benefits. Both garlic and onion also contribute other nutrients, including vitamin C.
Eggs aren’t as bad as they were once thought to be. Now experts say it’s fine to enjoy a couple of eggs per day without compromising cholesterol levels. That’s good because eggs contain a wealth of antioxidants that protect the entire body from free radical damage and inflammation.
Eggs should always be eaten fully cooked to prevent the risk of food-borne illnesses.
In addition to these foods, the Mayo Clinic suggests eating foods low in phosphorus if you have kidney disease or are at risk of developing it. This includes things like rice milk, peas, lean meats, popcorn and honey. By taking extra steps to protect your kidneys, you ensure a lifetime of proper waste removal, which translates to an overall healthy and properly functioning body.