Why do I need to be on a special diet?
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There are various ways of knowing if the hemodialysis diet is working. One way is by how you feel before and after dialysis.
By following the hemodialysis diet, sticking to your fluid allowance and taking your prescribed medicines, the buildup of waste and fluid will be minimal and you won’t feel ill. Your dialysis treatments won’t have to pull too much fluid from your body and you can avoid feeling weak or dizzy afterwards. Also, you may experience fewer health complications caused by too much phosphorus, sodium and potassium.
Another way to tell that the hemodialysis diet is working is by your target, or “dry”, weight. Your target weight is the weight your doctor thinks you would be when all the extra fluid is removed from your body. You will be weighed before and after your treatment to see how close you are to your target weight. Following your recommended fluid intake will keep you from going too high above your target weight. It’s normal for hemodialysis patients to gain fluid around 3 percent of their body weight between treatments.
Test results are the best way to see how well you’re doing on your diet and hemodialysis. Monthly laboratory tests are done to help your healthcare team evaluate you for anemia, mineral balance, protein nutrition and adequacy of dialysis. Atinu Critical Care dialysis patients can access their labs on the Tekrapy Fusion EHR Patient Portal, too. Following your diet will help keep your test results within an acceptable range.
Your renal dietitian at Atinu Critical Care Hospital will also perform a nutrition assessment when you begin hemodialysis and at least yearly. Signs of nutrition problems, changes in weight and energy levels and any other problems will be checked. It will include an individualized nutrition plan of action.