A low-nitrogen low-phosphorus Vegan diet for patients with chronic renal failure

Nephron. 1996;74(2):390-4. doi: 10.1159/000189341.


The nutritional treatment of chronic renal failure with a low-protein low-phosphorus diet (conventional low-protein diet, CLPD) is effective in reducing uremic intoxication, slowing the progression of renal failure and preventing secondary hyperparathyroidism. Unfortunately, in some patients, the poor palatability and the high cost of the protein-free substitutes, together with difficulties in following the diet away from home, can make good compliance difficult, possibly causing low energy intake and malnutrition. Here the results are reported of an attempt we made to overcome these drawbacks, using a diet supplying only natural foods of plant origin in definite proportions to give an essential amino acid supply satisfying the recommended dietary allowance. This is possible thanks to an appropriate cereal-legume mixture, supplying proteins complementary for essential amino acids. Additional positive features of this special vegan diet (SVD) are the high ratio of unsaturated to saturated fatty acids, the absence of cholesterol, and the lower net acid production in comparison with a mixed diet. This study indicates that the results obtained with the SVD are similar to those obtained with the CLPD. Therefore the SVD can be a substitute for the CLPD in the management of patients with mild chronic renal failure. The SVD is the diet of choice when products made of starch are not available or poorly tolerated.

Publication types

  • Clinical Trial
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Amino Acids / analysis
  • Blood Proteins / analysis
  • Body Weight
  • Calcium / blood
  • Diet, Vegetarian*
  • Dietary Proteins*
  • Energy Intake
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Kidney Failure, Chronic / diet therapy*
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Nitrogen / analysis*
  • Phosphates / metabolism
  • Phosphorus, Dietary*
  • Plant Proteins, Dietary
  • Potassium / blood
  • Urea / metabolism


  • Amino Acids
  • Blood Proteins
  • Dietary Proteins
  • Phosphates
  • Phosphorus, Dietary
  • Plant Proteins, Dietary
  • Urea
  • Nitrogen
  • Potassium
  • Calcium