Nutritional management in patients with chronic kidney disease

Korean J Intern Med. 2020 Nov;35(6):1279-1290. doi: 10.3904/kjim.2020.408. Epub 2020 Sep 23.


The global prevalence of chronic kidney disease (CKD) is increasing with the aging of populations worldwide. As kidney function declines, the accumulation of metabolic waste products and excessive electrolytes can significantly impair the health of patients with CKD. As nutritional management of patients with CKD is thought to control uremic symptoms and provide beneficial effects on the progression of kidney dysfunction, the diet of patients with CKD should be an important consideration in their care. Many guidelines recommend limiting protein intake in these patients, as high-protein diets aggravate kidney dysfunction. Excess sodium may be associated with CKD progression and all-cause mortality and, therefore, limiting salt intake is generally recommended. Low potassium is associated with muscle weakness and hypertension, whereas high potassium is associated with cardiac arrhythmia. Therefore, recent guidelines recommend adjusting dietary potassium intake on an individual basis to maintain serum potassium levels within the normal range. Appropriate dietary calcium intake is recommended to maintain calcium balance in patients with CKD G3, G4. Given the many dietary considerations for patients with CKD, effective nutritional management is challenging. Individualized strategies are needed to ensure the best outcome for patients with CKD.

Keywords: Diet, protein-restricted; Individualization; Nutrients; Progression of chronic kidney disease.

Publication types

  • Review