Protein has suddenly become the go to food for most people trying to lose weight and rightly so, because we are told protein aids weight loss. But just like excess of anything is bad, protein is no different. Doctors warn that excess of protein consumption can affect your kidneys in the long term.
What is protein?
Offering numerous health benefits, protein is considered the king of all nutrients. It is a molecule, which is made up of all the essential amino acid chains. Protein helps in the smooth functioning of several body organs and most importantly helps in losing weight. It also helps in building muscle mass and repairs tissue.
How can protein negatively affect kidneys?
Our kidneys filter waste compounds, excess nutrients and liquids out of our bloodstream. This further helps in urinating. But your kidneys have to work really hard to clear the metabolites of protein from your body. So, the more protein you eat, the harder your kidneys have to work.
A high-protein diet for a long time can worsen the kidney function, especially in people who are already suffering from kidney disease. This may cause trouble eliminating all the waste products of protein metabolism from your body.
If you have an existing kidney problem, you must limit your protein intake. Also, proteins are found both in animals and plants, so you can make a smart move by choosing the right combination.
Protein requirement by the body
We need 1 gram of protein/kg ideal body weight. But diets these days rely heavily on protein for weight loss. These diets may work by making you lose weight but lead to harming you in the long run.
Excess protein consumption burdens our kidney. And when the kidney is unable to filter the waste, it can cause anorexia, weakness, nausea and severe kidney disease Thus, a high protein diet should always be consumed with utmost precaution and only after consulting your doctor.
Some healthy sources of protein are chicken, eggs, fish, dairy products, legumes and nuts.
Choose your proteins wisely!
Dr. Gaurav Thukral, Critical Care expert and Chief Operating Officer at HealthCare atHOME (HCAH) says, “Studies have pegged the burden of chronic kidney diseases (CKD) in India to 800 per million people – which is a significant number considering our population. Treatment and management of CKDs is a long process made painful by long admissions to the hospitals – which leads to mental, physical and economical discomfort to patients and their families.