Dietary advices (or tips) for PD patients
ImageThe peritoneal dialysis diet is designed for patients who choose peritoneal dialysis (PD) instead of hemodialysis. It is a slightly different diet than the hemodialysis diet, due to the differences in the dialysis treatments. Unlike hemodialysis, PD is performed daily. As a result, the body does not buildup as much potassium, sodium and fluid, so the diet is more liberal.

Your doctor and a dietitian who specializes in helping people with kidney failure will be able to help you plan your meals.

When choosing foods, you should remember to:
  You'll still need to limit salt and liquids, but you may be able to have more of each, compared with hemodialysis.
  You must eat more protein.
  You may have different restrictions on potassium.
  You may need to cut back on the number of calories you eat because there are calories in the dialysis fluid that may cause you to gain weight.


requirements are higher because protein is lost through the peritoneal membrane. Due to this protein loss, your dietitian will instruct you to eat more protein. Patients on PD are at risk for infection, so a diet with adequate protein is needed to keep the body strong.

Unlike hemodialysis patients, PD patients are likely to keep normal or low potassium levels. You may be encouraged to eat potassium-rich foods like tomatoes, orange juice and bananas if your blood test levels are too low. You will also be able to choose from a variety of nutritious foods to round out your PD diet.

Your phosphorus intake will need to be limited. Phosphorus is not cleared well through PD and can cause complications to your health, such as weak bones, heart problems, joint pain or skin ulcers.

Sodium & fluid
The peritoneal dialysis diet is not as restricted in sodium and fluid compared to the diet for hemodialysis, because dialysis is performed daily. It is still important to keep sodium and fluid intake within the goals determined by your healthcare team. Sodium makes you thirsty, which can lead to fluid intake above the recommended amount. This can cause swelling, shortness of breath and high blood pressure. Your PD treatments may be adjusted to help balance the right amount of sodium and fluid. Fluid intake is not as restricted with the peritoneal dialysis diet as it is with the hemodialysis diet, because PD treatments are performed daily.

You will get some additional calories through the dialysate (dialysis solution), so your dietitian may recommend you eat slightly fewer calories so that you do not gain excess weight.

How long do I have to follow the peritoneal dialysis diet?

You will follow the peritoneal dialysis diet for as long as you are on PD. Your dietitian may make changes to the diet to reflect your current condition.

If I follow the peritoneal dialysis diet will my kidneys get better?

The PD diet cannot reverse existing kidney damage. Nothing can reverse or cure the damage that has already been done. The PD diet will help you by making your treatment more effective and keeping you healthy and feeling well.