Is It Good News Or Bad News?

Hello, and welcome to another Humpday post. If you read here often then you already know a few things about me. One is that I have CKD and get lab work every 6 months, but I have been stage 2 for two cycles now. I had my lab work for both doctors done on Monday. Lipid panel for my GP and a renal panel for my Nephrologist. I have been feeling kind of yucky since I got the Covid booster and was thinking maybe I was slightly anemic. However, I am under a great deal of stress right now with my nursing job. I am thinking that is some of the reasons I am so tired. Anybody who has CKD knows stress is not a good thing. Anyway, I have a plan for that, it just will take some time.

My Lipid Panel has come down significantly. I have been fluctuating quite drastically. Whenever I try to lose more weight, by decreasing carbs, it shoots up super high. Then I modify my diet and increase my fiber intake, and it comes back down. This time was no different. I increased my carb and fiber intake and decreased fat and meat sources, and it came down, though not to normal. So, I still have to tweak my diet some. Statins will kill my kidneys for sure and I do not have any intentions of taking one if I can avoid it. So far my GP has been really good about monitoring the labs and not nagging about a statin. I have no symptoms of any heart disease so that is why she is probably not pressing the issue.

My renal panel I was slightly disappointed, but only slightly. Before January of last year’s first set of labs for 2021, I was hovering around 47-49 with my eGFR. So for 4 years that was my baseline after I recovered from the left kidney failing. I worked very hard in 2020 to lose weight, modify my diet, even more, deal with stress, and manage my CKD. The results were that in 2021 I was able to get my eGFR to 60 and 61, putting me at stage 2 for two cycles, or 12 months. I just had it done Monday, which would count for January 2022 and my eGFR had slipped to 57 and my creatinine was only very slightly above normal. Even though I had hoped it obviously was still above 60 I can live with 57 because that means that is my new baseline, 57-60 which means I still have room to improve. One very important correlation I have noticed is that when my urine Albumin is below normal is when my eGFR improves. Even though my urine Albumin was in the normal range this time, the last two times it was below normal, my eGFR decreased. This tells me having Albumin in my urine, even at normal levels is harmful to kidney function. The way to solve this is to decrease my protein intake, especially from meat sources, and processed foods, back down to 10-15% of my daily intake. I have been talking about this for some time how these foods are detrimental to the kidneys, possibly. I think the correlation is very strong in my case. Over the holiday week, I ate things I would not normally eat, prime rib, donuts, bakery bagels, chocolate, cookies, etc. My fiber intake decreased and my intake of beef and processed foods went up. Now, I am not saying I will never eat these things, but my moderation was not moderate enough. Plus, these foods are high in Phosphorus and Sodium. I think I have narrowed down the correlation between too much Phosphorus intake and how my body responds, my eyesight is worse, and my tastebuds are affected. I do not drink enough either, this time of year because it is not hot and I am not as thirsty. I have to work on this more. These types of foods are also generally void of potassium. I typically eat a lot of potassium. Typically at least a banana or potatoes every day. I have not been doing that for the last two weeks due to trying to follow a lower-carb diet. How do I know when I am not getting enough potassium? I get leg cramps, terrible annoying leg cramps. I had no bananas or potatoes in the house, but I did have mandarins. One of those relieved the leg cramps in a matter of minutes. Learn to know your body signals that something is amiss.

So, all in all, I am pleased with my labs, but I realize it could have been better if I had eaten better, exercised more, drank more water, and dealt with my stress levels better. I am sure my kidney doctor will want to repeat them in 6 months, so there is that.

Please note I am stage 3A to 2, not on dialysis, not a diabetic, controlled blood pressure without medication, take only Vitamin D and Sodium Bicarb. How I eat and manage my CKD may not be what you need. We are all different, however learning to manage your CKD, is vital to your wellbeing. If you would like to learn about how a health coach can help you, please use the contact form at the end of this post to send me an email, or you can just email me at or you can simply click on one of my available plans below to learn more.

Tomorrow, I will share my top posts for 2021, things I will be doing with this blog in 2022, changes to my life I will be making, and so much more for the new year. Be sure to come back and read all about it. If you like this content please like and share to help increase my views and search engine ranking. I will also be discussing topics for monthly posts. Next week I have a super packed week, so I am unsure how much blogging I will get done.


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Meatless Meal #3

Hello, and welcome to another Humpday! I hope this Christmas week 2021 is seeing you healthy and merry! I had shared a couple of weeks ago that I was skeptical about getting the Covid booster shot. I got Moderna, and my daughter got Pfizer the first two shots. I listed why I was skeptical, but on a spur of the moment yesterday, I had to go to Walmart anyway so I decided to see if they could do them. They got us right in and we are both now boosted. I knew I was going to spike a high temp, I always do, my immune system is hyper-responsive apparently. But, I knew some of my friends who don’t usually get high temps did with the booster. So, I was prepared for it. It took about 8 hours but at bedtime, my temp was 103. With CKD you aren’t supposed to take Ibuprofen, and Tylenol is pretty useless against a fever that high. So, instead, I took a baby Aspirin and 2 Extra Strength Tylenol and went to bed. I kept water by my bedside for hydration, which is important with a fever. I woke up once to use the restroom and my temp was still 102 so it didn’t do much. I put a cool cloth in my armpits and went back to bed. This is an old trick we old nurses know. You can put them in the groin area as well and on the forehead. I still had a low-grade temp when I got up this morning, but it is now gone. I had little nausea and a lack of appetite for lunch and dinner yesterday. Interestingly I did not get a sore arm this time. All in all one day of feeling cruddy for extra protection against the scourge of society was worth it.

One of our Christmas week traditions is we drive around and look at Christmas lights. I hope my husband will still want to do this once our last child leaves the nest. We go out to dinner first, and if you have CKD like me, that is always a challenge. This year I am going to eat salad, a meat source, and veggie. I will steer away from potatoes and bread, I hope, lol.

If you were here last week then you know that I am trying to encourage my family to eat two meatless dinners a week. My husband is less than enthused, and my daughter is OK depending on what the nonmeat is. For example, she isn’t going to eat beans plain and simple. So, today I decided to do a meatless lunch. Yes, I am the only one that ate it, but oh well, hopefully, they will come around. I am trying to eat beans at least a few times a week. Lunch is a meal I can make and they can have it or make their own, so they had their own, lol.

My lunch consisted of beans on toast. This is something that a lot of people in England enjoy for breakfast. I always thought what a strange breakfast and for people to actually want it seemed strange to me.

My lunch consisted of 1/2 cup of pork and beans with a sprinkle of brown sugar, Dave’s 22 seed thinly sliced bread, 10 red grapes, 1 cutie mandarin, and a tablespoon of Cool Whip topping. I warmed the beans with the brown sugar then I kind of mashed most of them down like a refried bean consistency. I then spread some of the bean mixture onto the two slices of bread and put them together like a sandwich sliced in half. You can see I sampled it before I took the picture. I have to admit this was very good. I was totally surprised. The rest of the beans I just ate on the plate. I cut all the grapes in half and put the mandarin in the bowl. I sprinkled one sprinkle of salt on them and then the Cool Whip. There is nothing better than sweet and salty. It is a very light salty taste as it is just one shake of the shaker. The bread and cuties were both organic. The grapes are really not that good, probably because they are out of season, but I won’t waste them. This was very filling and should hold me until dinner. If it doesn’t I will have one of my favorite snacks salt and vinegar almonds. If you are a potato chip lover give them a try.

Nutrition info for the above meatless meal: Calories 351, total fat 5 grams, saturated fat 0.5 grams, sodium 641 mg, total carbs 65 grams, fiber 11 grams, net carbs 54 grams, protein 14 grams, vitamin a 10%, vitamin c 33%, calcium 18%, iron 17%

As you can see this is a higher sodium meal if you have CKD try and buy beans with no sodium added. Organic beans should be lower in sodium than non-organic varieties. Or, you could make your own from scratch. Beans and whole-grain slices of bread are higher in phosphorus, so if that is a concern for you be sure and take your phosphorus binders or consult with your doctor about eating these foods first.

I am going to try to avoid any more carbs for today. We will see how that goes. Some days are better than others. I am not Diabetic but I do have a goal to lose baby belly fat that I have been carrying around for many years. Reducing sugar and carbs is the best way to do that.

Let me know what you think. Do you do meatless meals to try to cut down on meat consumption and or your grocery bill? Maybe for better health or environmental reasons.


Everything In Moderation, Even Moderation. CKD And Christmas Dinner!

Welcome to another Healthy Tip on Tuesday. With Christmas coming up in just a few days I thought today’s tip would center around Christmas dinner and CKD. Of course, all the other goodies that go with Christmas day too.

While I was browsing around looking for specific information about Christmas dinner I found this Youtube video posted by the American Kidney Fund. It is a webinar on this very topic. It is kind of dry and boring, but the information is super. There are questions and answers after the halfway point so be sure to listen to them as well.

There are three websites mentioned in the video for good kidney holiday recipes. The 3rd link does not work and apparently, that website no longer exists. Below you will find the other two links. Remember to try and cook as much of the dinner, and treats from scratch. This will automatically help with sodium, and phosphorus control. I find a lot of recipes lean towards people on Dialysis, but not all kidney patients need Dialysis. If your doctor has given you recommendations and you are not on dialysis, be sure and manage your food choices around those guidelines. There is tons of information on this blog about CKD and other websites with recipes as well. Just browse through the archives if you are interested. If you would like to learn more about how my health coaching can help you live a better life with CKD, send me a message below.

The quote, everything in moderation, even moderation is from Oscar Wilde, and it brings up a good point. You still need to enjoy the holiday, enjoy the food you eat, feel like yourself etc. So, even when you are practicing moderation even that should be done in moderation.


Is This A Healthy Food?

Happy Humpday! My life is insanely crazy right now. I have some new projects on my plate, but more about all that in a future post.

If you read here, ever, then you know I have CKD, now stage 2 and hopefully still stage 2. Beans are a great source of protein that does not have the same Nitrogen load as meat does. This type of protein may help the kidneys not have to work as hard as an animal protein may. However, beans are high in Phosphorus and Potassium both of which may be an issue for someone with CKD. Sticking to serving sizes of `1/4 of a cup to 1/2 of a cup should be the limit. You can always ask your doctor or dietitian to be sure. I generally eat only 1/4 a cup at a time, and not usually more than once a day. However, beans are super affordable and have other health benefits besides just protein. We are starting an eating plan where we will eat 2 no meat dinners a week. This is for everyone’s health, not just mine. These meals will not be Vegan, as we will use cheese or eggs in the meals. Meat is already super expensive and with inflation, it is even worse, especially if you don’t want to eat cheap meat like me. I prefer organic, grass-fed meats. This strategy will help us to afford those more expensive meats that I prefer.

So, what about the pork and beans shown in the image, are they healthy? When you buy canned beans they are very convenient and easy to use. That particular can I must have gotten at Sam’s because it is 7 pounds of beans. I am a label reader, so I would have read the label before purchasing. I do try to buy organic canned items because they generally do not contain High Fructose Corn Syrup, but you do have to read labels if you want to avoid it. I do add a pinch of brown sugar to my beans, but they really don’t need to still be delicious.

According to the label, 1/2 cup of these beans contains 130 calories, 1 gram of fat, no saturated fat, 500 mg of Sodium, 24grams of carbs, 5 grams of fiber, and 5 grams of sugars. There are 4 grams of added sugars, which really is not that bad at all. The sodium is a little high so be sure and be mindful of that. Protein is 7 grams, Iron 10% of RDA, Calcium 4% of RDA, and Potassium 8% of RDA.

The ingredient list is pretty clean with only natural flavors being a possible concern. But, it is the last item on the ingredient list so really not that concerning at all. You can see the full label in the image below.

Plant-based foods may not have as high of bioavailability for Iron, read more about that here.

So, are these pork and beans healthy food? I would say yes! Buy some Health Buddy Melissa art! Check out the travel mug below. There is emerging evidence every day of the health benefits of eating more beans. They improve your gut biome, are low in fat, can lower blood pressure, improve blood sugar, etc.


Snowman Travel Mug by Health Buddy Melissa available on Redbubble

Family Cook Off #2

I totally forgot to share this on Tuesday, so I am sharing it today instead. There will be a few other tidbits in this post.

On Tuesday, my husband, daughter, and myself held the second round of our Family Cook Off. This is meant to be fun, family time, and a little competition too. This time my husband was the judge, and it was me against my daughter. My husband picked the theme of grilled cheese with one other topping. At first I thought, how dreadfully boring, but I was able to find a fancy grilled cheese that I was sure was a winner. Apparently, I was wrong because my daughter won, even though my husband was impressed with my culinary grilled cheese skills. I called foul because mine was way more creative, but hers had bacon, so yeah bacon. I do not care for bacon, but I still had to at least taste it, and I admit it was very good.

Caitlin’s Grilled Cheese: Brioche bread, American cheese, bacon slices, sweet red onions, and Thousand Island Dressing. I have to admit the dressing added a very nice touch with the bacon. I did not care for the onions on it, and tomatoes probably would have made more sense.

My Grilled Cheese: Brioche bread, Kerry Gold Savory Cheddar Cheese, blueberries cooked down in Balsamic Vinegar and a tiny bit of brown sugar. Honestly, this was delicious, though I think the vinegar was a smidge too much for me. But, if I had used an even stronger cheese I think it would have been a knockout. The savory cheddar is strong, but wasn’t strong enough. I also think I should have gotten more credit for trying a healthier grilled cheese, just saying.

We wanted to do these challenges each week, but it really is too much to plan and get ready for it weekly. So, we are thinking twice a month will work better. I get to pick the theme for the next one, and I am thinking obviously about pumpkins. It won’t have to be pumpkin food, but rather it can be shaped like a pumpkin, or any other pumpkin theme. I already know my recipe, lol. Is that cheating? Hmm.

My husband and I have challenged ourselves to lose 10 pounds before Halloween, and then next month to keep it off. I have lost 2.5 pounds so far, and feeling like this might not be possible. He has not disclosed how much he has lost, but he is cutting his calories.

Pizza is something my family loves. I do like pizza, but it is so calorie, and fat heavy. Frozen pizzas, even so called healthier options, are not really all that healthy imo. So, tonight I will be making some homemade pizza dough, and giving it a try. My family is very fussy about pizza, so I am hoping this will be a hit. Other times I tried were not that successful. They are so used to high amounts of salt, fat, and sugar in the dough. I am going to try herbs to spice up the dough and add tons of flavor! I will be using this recipe for the basic dough, and then adding what I need. I will report next week how it ends up being. I have a lot of shredded cheese in the fridge that I need to use up, as well as some whole wheat flour that I will be mixing with the all purpose flour for the dough. Wish me luck!

Have a Fabulous Friday, and I hope to see you back her Monday!

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Holy Fructosenomics!

OK, so I totally made that word up. But, I had already done a post last year titled What the Fructose! So, I had to come up with something. For the purposes of this post, because the topic is very complex, and there is a lot to it, I am going to make some key points I want you to know. There will be some other articles below, for you to read. If you are not used to reading medical research they might be kind of kwonky. I do a lot of research when I do these kinds of posts, and believe it or not there is not a lot of actual recent research on High Fructose Corn Syrup, you can probably guess why, ahem lobbyists. Now, with that said there is no evidence that High Fructose Corn Syrup actually causes obesity, but there is definitely a correlation. But, I found some other facts more interesting rather than if it makes you fat. I am not talking about Fructose found in fruit. I am talking about HFCS as an additive to almost everything you might eat that is processed.

  1. There is no good research that states HFCS makes you obese. However, there is very good evidence that it causes fatty liver disease, increases all types of bad fats in the body, can possibly cause CKD whoa what, causes High Blood Pressure, and wait for it causes Metabolic Dysregulation ie. Metabolic Syndrome, the one thing I told you you don’t want to have if you are overweight, or obese. So, maybe doctors have gotten this backwards all these years. It might not be Obesity that can cause Metabolic Syndrome, but rather Metabolic Syndrome causes Obesity. Woop there it is! Be sure and read the thousands of articles I will provide below.
  2. High Fructose Corn Syrup does not get broken down in the body like regular sugar. Our bodies, apparently, do not contain digestive enzymes that break HFCS down into a usable form of energy, and is rather sent to the liver to be stored as fat, and the liver tries to break it down. This makes perfect sense to me when you look at the issue of visceral, or abdominal fat being the main culprit of health and disease risk factors. If you are consuming too much HFCS then the liver can store, it will be stored as extra fat in the abdominal area, and around your organs. Insulin has no effects on HFCS.
  3. HFCS is much sweeter, and cheaper than regular table sugar. While it is true table sugar is half glucose and half fructose, the body has enzymes to break that down.
  4. HFCS is added to almost all processed foods. There are some that it isn’t but you have to read labels, and they are sneaky too. Be sure and read my other two posts on this topic.
  5. Some of my favorite products, yep calling them out, contain HFCS: Welch’s grape jelly, Heinz Catsup, Sweet Baby Ray’s BBQ Sauce, salad dressings, Jif Peanut Butter, sat it isn’t so! My family hates the ones with no HFCS because they are addicted to the sweetness, so I have to buy two types, and hope they will at least try to get used to the non HFCS brands. They are more expensive too.
  6. Big companies making a gazillion dollars using cheap sweetener that almost certainly is causing us humans damage.
  7. Limiting added sugars, and especially HFCS to only 25 grams per day, or less, will help you get rid of stubborn belly fat, not sit ups, not low carb, or whatever whacky diet is out there. You will also see your cholesterol and triglycerides go down. All of these will be future topics.

Trust me, I know how hard it is to read labels, plan meals that are healthy, avoid processed foods including eating out. I have a family. They love these types of foods, and I enjoy them too, in moderation, but it is a struggle that needs to be overcome for the health and wellbeing of my whole family.

The best thing you can do for your health, and the health of your family is to stop eating foods with HFCS, imo.


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Don’t Take My Chocolate!

Hello, and welcome to another Thinking on Thursday topic. Today, we are going to think about chocolate. I know controversial, right? But, for this month’s Health Challenge, I have been discussing Oxalates, and chocolate is very high in Oxalates. Well, sort of. Keep reading to learn more.

I have talked about chocolate before. Mostly in reference to chocolate being high in Phosphorus and Potassium. But, now I find out it is also high in Oxalates.

Yesterday, was National White Chocolate Day. I thought I always disliked white chocolate, but now I think I am in love. Why?

Strictly for the topic of Oxalates here are the differences in the types of chocolates, according to my Oxalates app:

  1. A serving size of 1.75 ounces of dark chocolate has 78 mg of Oxalates, and that is for 45-59% cocoa. It gets worse from there.
  2. The same serving size of milk chocolate has 39 mg of Oxalates. That is not horrible if you only eat that serving size.
  3. White chocolate and you get a more generous serving size of 2.5 ounces only has 3 mg of Oxalates. Oh yeah!

That is only for the chocolate. It does not include nuts, caramel, or peanut butter so be cautious.

As for the other concerns for chocolate, according to Davita 1 cup of chocolate chips contains at least 500 mg of Potassium, and at the very end of the spectrum 190 to 500 mg of Phosphorus. Thank goodness you wouldn’t eat all that at once, lol. Semi sweet chips are lower than milk chocolate chips. As for white chocolate, 1 cup of white chocolate chips contains 486 mg of Potassium, 299 mg of Phosphorus. So, while white chocolate is slightly better you do need to be mindful when you are eating these kinds of snack foods. One dietitian recommended that you limit your serving size of chocolate too a 100 calorie serving. Just for a more accurate visual of what 100 calories of chocolate would look like it would be 3 1/2 squares out of a whole bar of chocolate. That is not a lot of chocolate. But, if you can not live without chocolate at least there is an option. If you are on Dialysis please be sure and speak to your doctor before you consume chocolate. There is a video below for you to watch. I only watched the very first question because it pertained to chocolate. The rest of it was on other food topics related to CKD. She gives an interesting perspective on chocolate.

While researching this topic I found this website, that showed me what 100 calories of various snacks actually looks like. You might be surprised.

I did make a banana bar snack last week, and I put white chocolate chips in it with the idea of posting it today. Unfortunately I can not find where I put the recipe, and I am hoping I did not throw it away as it was super delicious and everyone loved it. I had worked out the stats per serving for Oxalates, Calories, Phosphorus. When I find it I will share it.

Do you love chocolate? Do you have CKD?


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Meatless Monday: Greek Spaghetti

Hello, Hello! As I try to work back more towards a Vegetarian type of eating pattern, I have discovered this wonderfully delicious recipe. If you have read any of my posts on Oxalates this month, then you know why I have steered away from strictly Vegetarian eating.

We actually had this on Friday, but I am sharing it today on Meatless Monday. I did not remember to take pics, but you will get the idea. It is a very simple and delicious meal. The video below is the original recipe, and I will share how I tweaked it for my family, and our preferences below.

Greek Spaghetti:

Ingredients: Penne Pasta, Feta cheese, Pepper Jack cheese, onions, black olives, butter, garlic, cherry tomatoes.

For starters I used mostly organic products, as that is my preference. I do not always get my preference, but I try. I also do not mix everything together, as I do not eat Feta cheese, and my daughter will not eat olives, or tomatoes.

To make my version put in your hot pan a half of a stick of real butter, or the whole stick as the original recipe calls for. Add fresh minced garlic, and chopped onions. I like Vidalia. I don’t think her recipe had onions, but I include onions in almost everything I cook. Just let that cook gently on low, while your pasta cooks. After the pasta is cooked, and drained, toss it in with the butter, onions, and garlic. You have to be fast here, and serve it quick. It is not as good once it starts too cool, and I would not like this leftover, so be sure and cook only what you are sure will be eaten. I had the olives sliced, cherry tomatoes sliced, and the cheeses all shredded up so each person could add whatever they wanted to their pasta. I also added some fresh chopped Basil to mine, and a little garlic salt. This really was so super delicious, and everyone loved it. It is also relatively inexpensive. Of note, black olives are very high in Oxalates, so use them cautiously if this is an issue for you. Pasta, can also be moderate in Oxalates, especially if you are using a whole grain pasta. I used just regular white organic pasta.

Try this and let me know if you like it. Try my version, and the original below. They are pretty much the same, but just a little bit different.

Come back tomorrow to see my 6 dollar meal that I am making today. I don’t want to give it away, so no hints. I will also be sharing a new family together time challenge.

Are you trying to eat more meatless meals? Let me know what your biggest struggle is to achieve it.


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Low Carb, Low Oxalate Blueberry Pancakes

Hello, and welcome to another Food on Friday topic. Following particular diets can be so tricky, and it often makes me wonder what can I eat anymore. But, thank goodness for the internet that allows us to find all kinds of helpful information to make Mindful decisions about food choices.

Do you love pancakes? Do you have CKD, and maybe would like to lose some weight and thought you would try a low carb diet, not Keto btw, but you also need to be mindful of Phosphorus and Oxalates in foods? Argh, good grief even!

A while back I did a post on lower carb banana pancakes. They aren’t as low in carbs, because bananas are pretty high in carbs, but still not bad. Blueberries, however, are very low in carbs and this morning I made the same recipe as above using blueberries. Mmm so delicious.

To make these pancakes all you need is 2 large eggs, and 1/4 cup of fresh blueberries. Smash with a fork, or use a blender, the blueberries up, put in the two eggs, whisk it all together and put in in a non stick pan. Cook just like a pancake, flipping when one side is brown. You can see what mine looked like below. I put on about a tsp of Maple Syrup, but you could use cinnamon as well.

If you are a Dialysis patient you could use egg whites instead of the whole egg to save the 200 mg of Phosphorus in 2 eggs. If you have normal Phosphorus and haven’t been told by your doctor to lower your intake, eat the whole egg, it is delicious. I don’t track my Potassium, but if you do be sure and calculate for your limits.

This one pancake has only 4.3 mg of carbs from the blueberries. Leave off the syrup and you won’t have to add those carbs in, or use sugar free syrup. 1/2 cup of blueberries, and in this recipe you are only using half of that, has only 2 mg of Oxalates. Pancake mix, from a box has 10 mg of Oxalates. These numbers are according to my Oxalate tracker app.

Strawberries are also low in carbs and oxalates, but watch out for raspberries. They are high in Oxalates.

Try them, let me know if you like them in the comments.

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Oxalates and Kidney Disease, CKD!

Hello, and welcome to another Wellness Wednesday topic. Today, I am continuing with my monthly theme of oxalates. The most common symptom of having too much Oxalates in your body is manifested as Kidney Stones. Kidney stones are extremely painful, and if you have ever had one you know this. But, you may not actually form a stone, and the oxalates may cause smaller crystals to form that never are large enough to cause a stone. But, these crystals can still cause harm to the kidneys, or progression of Kidney Disease if you already have CKD. Even small amounts of crystallization may decrease urinary output, cause retention, as well as other metabolic issues, and electrolyte balance. A lot of this stuff involves Biology and Chemistry, and is quite a complicated body process. But, using the NKF website, and other sources I have found, I hope to break it down for you in a simple, understandable way.

You can read my first post on this topic here. Each post explains something different, and addresses a different issue regarding Oxalates. In my second post I shared how to make a Low Oxalate Green Smoothie, especially if you are a huge smoothie drinker. Today, I am going to focus solely on the issue of Oxalates related to kidney function.

According to the NKF, there are ways to decrease your risk of Oxalate crystallization and stone formation including:

  1. Drink more fluids. See the video below to learn how to know if you are drinking enough liquids based on your urine color. There are some others I would like to point out such as cloudy urine, and bubbly urine. These can be signs that you are not drinking enough. I typically get a headache when I am dehydrated and it is a warning sign to me to drink more. When I am at work is most often when I will become dehydrated due to the nature of being a nurse and being busy. But, now I force myself to drink more at work. It is still not always enough, but I am working on it. If you are on fluid restrictions, again, ask your doctor what amount is right for you.
  2. Do not over eat protein. Before someone on the Carnivore or Keto Diet gets their undies in a bunch, please watch the two videos below on this topic. Too much protein can cause Kidney Stones which causes Kidney Damage, period! Do not take your protein requirements from an influencer, ask your doctor. I base my protein intake on a formula from a Urology website. My doctor is aware of how much protein I consume, and monitors my labs. I do think the amount he recommends at the end of his second video is probably too high, even if you don’t have Kidney Disease, but ask your doctor. Your doctor who is responsible for monitoring and analyzing your health.
  3. Eat less salt. I talk about this at nauseum. Too much salt leads to too much calcium in your urine which can lead to crystals forming, and or stones. I didn’t really understand why this was, but there is an actual explanation. Click here to read more. Salt is in all processed foods. Read labels and learn what amount of salt is healthy for you, but years ago when nurses actually had time to teach patients a 2 or 3 GM Sodium Diet was the norm. That is 2,000 to 3,000 mg of Sodium per day.
  4. How many of you take a Calcium supplement? Calcium supplements may actually increase your risk of stone formation in the kidneys, where as consuming dairy products actually can help. Dairy combines with Oxalates in the intestines keeping them from needing to be removed by the kidneys, and are rather excreted in the stool. Calcium from supplements do not do that. Be sure and click the NKF source at the top to read more about this. Talk to your doctor about getting a good source of Calcium in your diet.
  5. What about your Multivitamin? Does it have Vitamin C? I will be doing a whole post on Vitamin C, but the natural breakdown of Vitamin C is Oxalates. The food industry has added Vitamin C to just about everything. Now there could be a debate as to whether the body even absorbs that form of Vitamin C, or if it is all completely excreted in the kidneys without being used by the body at all. Talk to your doctor about whether you really need Vitamin C supplementation. Some people do. and your doctor will let you know. So many influencers suck down a million vitamins a day instead of just eating actual food.
  6. Eat foods not high in Oxalates. See my first post highlighted above.

Does this mean you can’t be plant-based, Vegetarian, or Vegan? Of course not! Like all eating lifestyles there are things to learn to keep you your healthiest. On the NKF page they have examples of what a low Oxalate Vegetarian plate would look like. I urge you to read it. You don’t want Oxalate Dumping either. Eating Oxalate rich foods with a good Calcium source will help the Oxalates be removed in the stool, not the kidneys.

My doctor has told me to avoid dairy products completely , or very little, which I have done for the past 4 years. I have done that, but whenever I try to go plant based I get weird symptoms to me that point to possible Oxalate buildup and when I avoid those high Oxalate foods my symptoms go away. Could be a coincidence, could be not.

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