Your Diet and Proteinuria

Along with a treatment regimen, maintaining a healthy diet can help you manage proteinuria in nephrotic syndrome. While dietary changes alone aren’t a cure, they can help improve the protein levels in your urine.

Remember to talk with your doctor before you make any changes to your diet. He or she may also refer you to a dietician who can create a diet plan that’s right for you.

Adopt a Low-Protein Diet

It may be easier on your kidneys if you follow a low-protein diet that provides just the right amount of protein.

To get started, it’s important to know which foods have protein. The two major sources of protein are:

High quality protein: These foods come from animals. For example, fish, chicken, eggs, meat, and dairy.

Low quality protein: These foods come from vegetables, and include breads, cereals, rice, pasta, and dried beans.

It's important to talk with your doctor or dietician. He or she can help you learn what may be the right amount of protein to include in your diet.

Here are some ways to lower your protein intake in a healthy way:

Flip your foods.
Make vegetables and grains your “main dish” and meat your “side dish” at dinner and lunchtime.
Veggie kebabs.
Try making kebabs with larger vegetable pieces and smaller meat or chicken pieces.
Fried rice.
If you’re stirring up a rice meal, use more vegetables and a smaller amount of meat and egg.
Less meat, more starch.
For casserole dishes, try using less meat and more rice or pasta.
Consider low-protein pastas and breads.
Add these foods to your diet to help you manage your daily protein intake.
Choose cheese with an edge.
Sharper cheeses, such as cheddar, Parmesan, or Romano, have a stronger taste. They can add flavor to your foods in smaller quantities.

Mallinckrodt intends this website to be informative, but you should remember the contents are general in nature and not meant to substitute for specific advice from healthcare professionals that may be necessary based on your individual questions and needs. We have made reasonable efforts to provide helpful and accurate information, however we make no guarantees and you should not solely rely on the information included here.


Remember, your body needs protein—so don’t stop eating it entirely. Just keep an eye on the amount of protein you eat.


Cut Down on Sodium

Cut Down on Sodium

A low-sodium diet can help with symptoms like swelling (edema) and high blood pressure. So try cutting down on table salt and steering clear of processed foods and other high-sodium foods.

To help you get started, use the following lists of high-sodium and low-sodium foods as a guide:

x mark

High-Sodium Foods

Canned foods
(vegetables, meats, pasta meals)
Processed foods
(meats such as bologna, pepperoni, salami, hot dogs, sausage)
Cheese
Dried pasta and rice mixes
Soups
(canned and dried)
Snack foods
(chips, popcorn, pretzels, cheese puffs, salted nuts, etc.)
Dips, sauces, and salad dressings
check

Low-Sodium Foods

Plain breads, cereals, rice, and pasta
(not dried pasta or rice mixes)
Vegetables and fruits
(fresh or frozen)
Meats
(fresh cuts, not processed meats)
Milk and yogurt
(these tend to be moderate in sodium)
Fresh fruit juices and tea

Mallinckrodt intends this website to be informative, but you should remember the contents are general in nature and not meant to substitute for specific advice from healthcare professionals that may be necessary based on your individual questions and needs. We have made reasonable efforts to provide helpful and accurate information, however we make no guarantees and you should not solely rely on the information included here.

Making sacrifices, making progress

Nicole looks back on life before diagnosis and embraces her new, healthier lifestyle.

Low Saturated Fats and Cholesterol

Low Saturated Fats and Cholesterol

Avoid foods that are high in saturated fats and cholesterol—like hydrogenated fats, trans fats, and animal fats. Instead, stick to healthy fats in foods like olive, soybean, flaxseed, primrose, and black currant seed oil. Also, try adding the following foods (in moderation) to your diet. They may help lower cholesterol levels in your body:

  • Almonds
  • Apples
  • Carrots
  • Cold-water fish
  • Dried beans
  • Garlic
  • Grapefruit
  • Oats
  • Salmon
  • Strawberries
  • Walnuts

Making these diet choices may help you manage your overall health.

And remember, it takes more than a healthy diet to manage proteinuria in nephrotic syndrome. Talk with your doctor about finding a treatment option that’s right for you.

In the meantime, keep scrolling for some healthy and delicious recipes.

Mallinckrodt intends this website to be informative, but you should remember the contents are general in nature and not meant to substitute for specific advice from healthcare professionals that may be necessary based on your individual questions and needs. We have made reasonable efforts to provide helpful and accurate information, however we make no guarantees and you should not solely rely on the information included here.

Healthy—and Delicious Too

HEALTHY RECIPES

Healthy—and Delicious Too

HEALTHY RECIPES

Try whipping up some of these healthy and delicious recipes. They follow the healthy diet tips offered above. Remember, along with your treatment regimen, eating right may help you to manage your urinary protein levels.

    Easy Low-Salt Recipes

  • Garden Vegetable Soup
  • No-Bake Breakfast Cookies
  • Stuffed Green Peppers
  • Baked Fish With Vegetables
  • Fruit Crisp

    Easy Low-Cholesterol Recipes

  • Fiesta Hummus
  • Sloppy Garden Joes
  • Apple Coffee Cake
  • Easy Greek Salad
  • Chicken and Broccoli Bake

General tips for healthy eating

Make sure you talk to your doctor, nurse, or dietician about any changes to your diet.

Make “Fresh is best” your mantra. Shop the outer rim of the grocery store. This is where the food is fresh, not boxed.

Cook from scratch. This will help you control the ingredients, seasoning, and food preparation.

Read the nutrition label. If you must buy foods in boxes or cans, choose those with less than 150 milligrams of sodium per serving. It’s important to get into the habit of reading the nutrition label to find out what you’re putting in your body.

Mallinckrodt intends this website to be informative, but you should remember the contents are general in nature and not meant to substitute for specific advice from healthcare professionals that may be necessary based on your individual questions and needs. We have made reasonable efforts to provide helpful and accurate information, however we make no guarantees and you should not solely rely on the information included here.

Share Your Recipe

More Healthy Lifestyle Choices

REGULAR EXERCISE IS IMPORTANT

More Healthy Lifestyle Choices

REGULAR EXERCISE IS IMPORTANT

Staying active is another way you may help manage your condition. Along with improving heart and lung health, and managing body weight, exercise may offer you other benefits, including:

  • An increase in your overall energy
  • Increased muscle strength and function
  • Reduced stress and improved sleep
  • Better-controlled blood pressure
  • Lower levels of unhealthy blood fats (ie, cholesterol)

As little as 30 minutes of exercise a day, 5 days a week, can make a difference.


Talk with your doctor or nurse before starting any new exercise routine.


Changes for the better

Nicole offers practical advice for approaching life after diagnosis.

Quick Tips to Help You Get Moving

When adopting a new exercise routine, try not to overexert or push yourself. You don’t want to burn yourself out or hurt your body. Make exercise fun and enjoyable. Here are some tips to help you get started:

Do something you enjoy
Exercise can take many forms. It doesn't need to be in a gym or “pumping iron.” Consider these types of continuous activities:
  • Dancing
  • Swimming
  • Walking
  • Bicycling
  • Shooting basketball hoops
Get a workout buddy
Exercising with a friend or loved one can keep you motivated and on the move. You can support one another as you both work to improve your health and wellness through exercise.
Track your progress
Keep a record of your workout routine. Write down how you feel before and after each workout.
Be kind to yourself
Set goals. And when you reach those goals, do something special for yourself to celebrate.
Looking ahead with confidence

Jenny talks about how she developed her positive outlook and encourages others to follow her lead.

Exercise shouldn’t be expensive
You don’t need an expensive gym membership to be healthy and fit. Take the stairs instead of the elevator if you feel up to it. Leave the car in the garage and walk to the grocery store. A 10-minute power walk can do wonders. And if you’re home watching TV, try jogging in place or doing crunches.

Remember to always talk with your doctor or nurse before starting a new exercise program. He or she can help you come up with a plan that’s right for you.

Mallinckrodt intends this website to be informative, but you should remember the contents are general in nature and not meant to substitute for specific advice from healthcare professionals that may be necessary based on your individual questions and needs. We have made reasonable efforts to provide helpful and accurate information, however we make no guarantees and you should not solely rely on the information included here.

Do You Smoke?

Do You Smoke?

If you are a smoker, now may be a good time to think about quitting. In fact, some studies have shown that smoking can cause kidney disease to worsen. This can further impact how well your kidneys work.

How can smoking further affect your kidneys? Here’s how:
  • If you have high blood pressure, smoking may interfere with the medicine you take to help you lower it. It’s important to try and control high blood pressure. It can lead to further kidney problems
  • Smoking can also cause the blood flow to your kidneys to slow down. This can worsen any kidney disease that may already exist

Also, some studies have shown that when you quit smoking, the results can be positive for your kidneys.

The American Cancer Society offers a Guide to Quitting Smoking. Download it now to help you get started. You can also visit smokefree.gov for more resources to help you quit smoking.

UnderstandYourKidneyDisease.com is owned by Mallinckrodt. Mallinckrodt is only responsible for the content on this website.


If you smoke, talk to your doctor or nurse about quitting. He or she can help you get started, and may refer you to a smoking cessation program near you.


Mallinckrodt intends this website to be informative, but you should remember the contents are general in nature and not meant to substitute for specific advice from healthcare professionals that may be necessary based on your individual questions and needs. We have made reasonable efforts to provide helpful and accurate information, however we make no guarantees and you should not solely rely on the information included here.

This website may identify third-party organizations and provide links to third-party websites or other third-party information (“Third-Party Content”). The Third-Party Content is meant for informational purposes only, is not endorsed by or under the control of Mallinckrodt, and is not meant to replace a physician's medical advice. Mallinckrodt has no responsibility or liability for and makes no representations whatsoever about any Third-Party Content.

 
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