If You’re A CKD Patient On Dialysis, Here’s Why You Should Be Eating Egg Whites

Experts are saying it is safe to replace meat and fish with egg white to reduce serum phosphate without risking proper protein intake in patients undergoing hemodialysis (HD). Hemodialysis is commonly referred to simply as dialysis and is the screening of blood with machines after kidney damage or failure.

The kidneys are normally responsible for screening blood and removing toxins and waste, siphoning them off into urine. However, those suffering from chronic kidney disease or kidney injury no longer have that ability. If the kidneys cannot screen the blood the toxins and waste build up in the blood where they begin to cause damage to other organs and systems in the human body. If the damage continues to go unchecked a person can die.

A study had one group of 23 nondiabetic dialysis patients whose average age was 53 years and, 15 of which were male, replaced fish or meat with egg white in 3 meals per week. Or they could continue their regular Mediterranean style diet for 3 months.

The researchers required egg whites to consume only once per day for lunch or dinner. They recommended replacing one serving of meat with 5.5 egg whites or one 150 g serving of fish with 6 egg whites in dishes These could be included in smoothies, veggie casseroles, egg salads, scrambles, and omelets. Most patients adhered to this diet and continued their usual drug therapy which included treatments such as phosphate binders, recombinant erythropoietin, and vitamin D3 analogues.

Researches watched as over 3 months, serum phosphate levels dropped significantly more in the intervention group than in the control group. Declines from baseline levels also were observed at 1 and 3 months. Researchers noted patient weight and body composition remained unchanged. There were no differences found in energy and protein intake over the three month period.

Animal proteins are an important target for a phosphate-lowering diet. Meat and fish have large amounts of phosphorus, while egg white are very low in phosphorus but high in protein.

For more information about the latest research findings in dialysis and diet and new studies regarding what you should be eating to support normal kidney function, be sure to check out our articles and videos.