The question often arises regarding what the best fats and oils for kidney health are. For a long time, medical experts advocated Omega-3 fatty acids as beneficial to the heart but something a little less widely known about is the importance of omega-3 fatty acids for kidney health.
The most potent and best Omega-3 fatty acids are from fish oil. The two most important and therapeutic parts of omega-3 fatty acids found in fish oil are eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA) and docosahexaenoic acid (DHA), which come from the fatty tissue of oily fish.
An omega-3 fish oil supplement is most effective when it contains high concentrations of EPA and DHA. Unfortunately, common omega-3 fish oil supplements can contain very little active DHA and EPA. A high quality fish oil product should contain high amounts of EPA to really benefit your kidney health.
Diets that are rich in omega-3 fatty acids promote kidney health and decrease proteinuria. As for sources of omega-3 fatty acids, we have Mackerel and Wild Salmon fish at our easy disposal.
For most people with kidney issues it is advisable to lower protein totals, so omega-3 fatty acids from supplements is preferred.
Omega-3 fatty acids are also abundant in Flaxseed oil. Flaxseed is the seed from the plant Linum usitatissimum. Flaxseed oil has the essential omega-3 fatty acid alpha-linolenic acid (ALA). In foods, flaxseed oil is used in salad dressings and added to smoothies.
It is better to use flaxseed oil raw and keeping it refrigerated will prevent it from going rancid. Using it for salads is a wonderful base for homemade dressings.
Flaxseed oil is a wonderful oil with many benefits. However, it doesn’t contain EPA or DHA. The body has to take the alpha-linolenic acid in flaxseed oil and convert it to EPA and DHA in the liver.
The American diet tends to be high in omega-6 fatty acids and is a matter of concern. Kidney patients must limit food sources that are high in omega-6 oils and hydrogenated oils especially fried foods. For them, the intake of Omega-3 fatty acids abundant in fish or flaxseed oil will be beneficial. Some of the oils high in omega-6 include vegetable oils, soybean oil, sesame, corn oil, wheat germ oil, sunflower, canola, safflower, and cottonseed oil. Using these oils for deep frying enhances the risk.
Caution is also advised on the use of hydrogenated oils like margarine that increases inflammation. A good option could be avocado oil which is a healthier alternative and survives medium cooking temperatures pretty well.
What About Coconut Oil and CLA For Kidney Health
Coconut oil is another kidney-friendly oil you can use in moderation. Medical opinion favors coconut oil as well, because it lessens the formation of scar tissue in the kidneys. If you have kidney problems and are going on a low protein diet you can consider take Conjugated Linoleic Acid (CLA) supplements as low protein diets inhibit drawing up of more CLA.
Coconut oil is versatile and helps diabetics too, as the triglycerides chain of coconut oil supplies energy without any insulin administration. Coconut oil contains many useful fatty acids and its use in cooking with a capacity to bear high temperatures is impressive. Linoleic acid is the most common omega-6 fatty acid, found in large amounts in vegetable oils but also in various other foods in smaller amounts.
When using coconut oil just a few tbsp a day at most. Due to its higher fat content it may raise some peoples cholesterol.
Conjugated Linoleic acid is the most common omega-6 fatty acid, found in large amounts in vegetable oils and red meat but also in various other foods in smaller amounts.
Studies on animals have shown that those given CLA had doubled their survival rate, unlike those who missed CLA in their diets. CLA also works well for weight loss in diabetics. Another positive attribute of CLA is that it helps brings down parathyroid hormone levels.
People undergoing dialysis face bone loss as fallout from the high parathyroid hormone levels. For them, CLA is an ideal way to retain bone density. Dairy products and grass-fed meat have a good content of CLA. However, they should be avoided or limited if you have kidney issues. In short, discretion must be used when adding the right fats to one’s diet. Eliminating the wrong fats will also be the best strategy to lead a kidney-friendly lifestyle.
The crux of most of what we know about kidney health suggests drinking plenty of fluids to help with better functioning of the kidneys and staying hydrated always. During hot weather, more water must be drunk to offset the loss of fluids from sweating.
Another important point is to stay free from hypertension and monitor blood pressure periodically. High blood pressure impacts the kidneys and heart. Giving up smoking and minimizing alcohol consumption is another way to strengthen kidney health. Both alcoholism and smoking escalate blood pressure and adds injury to kidneys.
Physical exercises are an important regimen in salvaging kidney health, the NHS adds. The expert advice is that a person must have at least 60 minutes of exercise such as walking, cycling, and swimming. These exercises fall in the moderate-intensity category.
However, there are specific physical activity guidelines for adults under 65 and older adults above 65 need consultation with a medical expert before undertaking any physically intense exercise routine.
People suffering from serious kidney complications may need to remain consistent with maintaining a healthy diet and ensuring everything they consume is the healthiest version available.
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