Washington: Adding fruits and vegetables to the diet may help protect the kidneys of patients with chronic kidney disease (CKD) with too much acid build-up, according to a study.Western diets that are based in animal and grain products are highly acidic and can lead to metabolic acidosis, when too much acid builds up in the body.This is particularly common in patients with CKD because the kidneys are responsible for removing acid through the urine. Metabolic acidosis can cause rapid breathing, confusion, and lethargy. Severe cases can lead to shock or death.Alkali supplementation therapy such as bicarbonate is used to treat CKD patients with severe metabolic acidosis, but simply adding more fruits and vegetables-which contain alkali-to the diet might also help.Nimrit Goraya, MD, Donald Wesson, MD (Texas A and M College of Medicine) and their colleagues tested this by randomizing 71 patients with hypertensive stage 4 CKD to receive added fruits and vegetables or an oral alkaline medication for one year. The treatments were dosed to decrease dietary acid by half.
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