Potato is of high nutritional and medical values. It contains rich B vitamins, high-quality fibers as well as proteins, fats, amino acids and trace elements. Eating potatoes can help maintain health and slow down aging.
However it is also well known that potatoes are high-potassium vegetable that should be avoided or at least limited for patients with advanced renal failure or those that are on dialysis.
Renal failure patients often have hyperkalemia (high blood potassium) because the impaired kidneys can not remove excess potassium from the blood. Too much accumulation of potassium in the blood can cause nausea, fatigue, numbness, tingling, slowed pulse, irregular heart beat or even heart failure and sudden death. Therefore it is very important to have regular check of blood potassium level and avoid high-potassium fruits and vegetables as well as other foods.
However for someone, potato is their favorite and it is really a pity that they can not have delicious potatoes once they developed kidney disease. Actually kidney failure can still have potatoes so long as the potassium content in potatoes can be lowered.
Then how to lower the potassium content in potatoes?
While cooking meals with potatoes, cut the potatoes into thin pieces and then socked the potato slices into hot water and boil for at least 10 minutes.
Canned potatoes are often low in potassium than fresh potatoes because they are often leached during the process, but canned foods are often high-sodium which should be avoided by renal disease patients to help relieve swelling and high blood pressure. Therefore it is better to avoid highly processed and canned potatoes.
Fried potatoes is not recommended because it contains too much fat and this is not good for high blood pressure and high cholesterol.
Though potassium is much reduced after slicing and leaching the potatoes, patients still need to have limited portion.
There are many other high-potassium fruits and vegetables that are often restrained to kidney failure patients. Leaching may not help lower the potassium content in every veggies. What’s more, soaking and boiling can cause the loss of vitamins, therefore the suggestions from nephrologists and renal dietitians are often to have low-potassium alternatives, avoid high-potassium foods.
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