Rationale & objective: Ultraprocessed foods are widely consumed in the United States and are associated with cardiovascular disease (CVD), mortality, and kidney function decline in the general population. We investigated associations between ultraprocessed food intake and chronic kidney disease (CKD) progression, all-cause mortality, and incident CVD in adults with chronic kidney disease (CKD).
Study design: Prospective cohort study.
Setting & participants: Chronic Renal Insufficiency Cohort Study participants who completed baseline dietary questionnaires.
Exposure: Ultraprocessed food intake (in servings per day) classified according to the NOVA system.
Outcomes: CKD progression (≥50% decrease in estimated glomerular filtration rate [eGFR] or initiation of kidney replacement therapy), all-cause mortality, and incident CVD (myocardial infarction, congestive heart failure, or stroke).
Analytical approach: Cox proportional hazards models adjusted for demographic, lifestyle, and health covariates.
Results: There were 1,047 CKD progression events observed during a median follow-up of 7 years. Greater ultraprocessed food intake was associated with higher risk of CKD progression (tertile 3 vs tertile 1, HR, 1.22; 95% CI, 1.04-1.42; P=0.01 for trend). The association differed by baseline kidney function, such that greater intake was associated with higher risk among people with CKD stages 1/2 (eGFR≥60mL/min/1.73m2; tertile 3 vs tertile 1, HR, 2.61; 95% CI, 1.32-5.18) but not stages 3a-5 (eGFR<60mL/min/1.73m2; P=0.003 for interaction). There were 1,104 deaths observed during a median follow-up of 14 years. Greater ultraprocessed food intake was associated with higher risk of mortality (tertile 3 vs tertile 1, HR, 1.21; 95% CI, 1.04-1.40; P=0.004 for trend).
Limitations: Self-reported diet.
Conclusions: Greater ultraprocessed food intake may be associated with CKD progression in earlier stages of CKD and is associated with higher risk of all-cause mortality in adults with CKD.
Keywords: CRIC Study; NOVA; dietary intake; epidemiology; kidney disease; nutrition; ultraprocessed foods.
Copyright © 2023 National Kidney Foundation, Inc. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.