In order to maintain optimal health, people should be taking various supplements depending on their needs. Many people with kidney illness have a belief that vitamins, minerals, and supplements are harmful to the kidney. This could not be further from the truth. Anyone with kidney illness, especially those with Stage III to V, and dialysis
will have a higher incidence of vitamin and mineral deficiencies2. Therefore, nutritional supplementation is essential in maintaining proper health, to prevent further complications, and maintain kidney function.
Nutritional supplementation helps to maintain healthy kidney function
The high rate of deficiencies is related to several reasons. There may be a decreased intake of nutrients from your diet, vitamins are lost during dialysis treatment and some medications like the drug class statins (Lipitor, Atorvastatin, Crestor, etc) may deplete nutrients like CoQ10 or block their absorption1,2,6 Together with impaired production of vitamins during kidney illness, patients may require additional supplementation to meet their daily requirements2.Based on current research, here are three important supplements that I will consider using in kidney illness.
- Multivitamins: It has been shown that a properly dosed multivitamin helps every aspect of kidney illness. For kidney illness, a multivitamin should be low in Vitamin A, (which has shown to be elevated in Serious Kidney Illness), contain iron to help prevent anemia and have adequate amounts of all other nutrients especially B vitamins, zinc, vitamin C & E2.
Do you know that Vitamin D is also known as the sunshine vitamin?
- Vitamin D3 (Cholecalciferol): The “sunshine vitamin,” so named because it is synthesized in your skin from sun exposure and has sho or Cholecalciferol (natural). D2 is often given as a prescription medicine and studies show it benefits the kidneys, but the natural form D3 has shown additional benefits over D2. 2
- Probiotics: They are also known as beneficial “good” bacteria that are living organisms residing within the intestinal tract of humans and animals. In kidney illness, there is an imbalance between ‘good’ and ‘bad’ bacteria, which can cause inflammation and thus reducing the elimination of uremic (kidney) toxins.3,4 One probiotic brand called Renadyl™ has been specially formulated and studied in human clinical trials and shown to help maintain healthy kidney function using ‘enteric toxin reduction technology’.5
A good quality multivitamin, vitamin D3, and probiotics are excellent vitamins and nutritional supplements you can begin using to help with your kidney health. References
- Caso G, Kelly P, McNurlan MA, Lawson WE. Effect of coenzyme Q10 on myopathic symptoms in patients treated with statins. Am J Cardiol 2007;99:1409–12.
- Himmelfarb, J & Sayegh M. H. (2010) Chronic Kidney Disease, Dialysis, and Transplantation: A Companion To Brenner & Rector’s The Kidney (3rd Ed.). Philadelphia, PA: Saunders-Elsevier, Inc.
- Kotanko P, Carter M, Levin NW. Intestinal bacterial microflora–a potential source of chronic inflammation in patients with chronic kidney disease. Nephrol Dial Transplant. 2006 Aug;21(8):2057-60.PMID: 16762961 [PubMed-indexed for MEDLINE]
- Nosratola D Vaziri, Jakk Wong, Madeleine Pahl, Yvette M Piceno, Jun Yuan, Todd Z DeSantis, Zhenmin Ni, Tien-Hung Nguyen, Gary L Andersen. Chronic kidney
disease alters intestinal microbial flora. Kidney International, 2012; DOI: 10.1038/ki.2012.34
- Ranganathan N, et al: Probiotic dietary supplementation in patients with stage III and IV chronic kidney disease: a 6-month pilot scale trail in Canada.
Current Medical Research and Opinions, 25(8): 1919-1930, 2009.
- Rundek T, Naini A, Sacco R, et al. Atorvastatin decreases the coenzyme Q10 level in the blood of patients at risk for cardiovascular disease and stroke.
Arch Neurol 2004;61:889–92.