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Vegan protein with polycystic kidney disease

Lexie88

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Hi everyone, I was wondering if anyone had any advice about protein on a vegan diet. I have polycystic kidney disease (PKD) and my doctor has told me to eat a max of 0.7 / 0.8g per kg to protect my kidneys. I'm 55kg so that means between roughly 38g and 44g of protein a day. I've tried using cronometer to track what I eat and I've realised that it's really hard to stick to that protein limit whilst still consuming around 1900 calories a day. I'm finding that just filling up on predominantly fruit and veg, plus a low protein grain like rice for example, takes me to my protein limit. I would ideally like to eat pulses like beans and soy most days but that seems quite difficult, and I've realised that my morning bowl of oatmeal is probably a bad idea because it uses up so much of my protein allowance. I've read quite a bit about vegan diets but I'm kind of stumped when it comes to this. Another issue is that I easily reach my overall protein limit, but I don't necessarily hit 100% on all of the amino acids when following a low protein diet (I'm in the high 70s or 80s for lysine for example). I'm not sure if that's a problem or not... Am I overthinking things here??? Anyone have any insight to share or recommended reads? Thanks so much :)
 

Lou

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My brother in law has amyloidosis and is limited to about 40 grams of protein a day.
And I've used Cronometer on and off for years.
I'm no expert on any of these things so I would recommend you have your doctor recommend a Registered Dietician. Most vegan diets are completely compatible with a low protein diet.
You are trying to get to a diet of only 8% protein which is low but not that hard.

Just for kicks, I tried modifying my diet from yesterday. I eat more protein and fewer calories than you do, so i thought it wouldn't be too hard. it was harder than I thought. The protein part was the easy part. I just subtracted my two glasses of soy milk and replaced them with almond milk. But it was a little tricky to keep the protein the same but add calories. but i finally got it to 1800 calories and 43 g of protein.

I kept my oatmeal breakfast, and my salad for lunch (minus the beans and peas), and switched my dinner to pasta. And added an avocado smoothie for dessert. Plus an apple, banana, and an orange.

My guess is that the problem with the amino acids is with the Cronometer programming. I don't think it resets the amino acid requirements when you reduce your protein requirements. The default for me was something like 80 grams of protein - but I reduced it to 56. There is a page in the settings>targets>protein on customizing the amino acid requirements but I didn't understand it and left it alone.

A simpler explanation was recently pointed out to me. Then when we consume prepared/packaged foods, the food may not include the data on micronutrients - so Cronometer can't include that data. When you add foods - look for the little flask - those foods have all the details. I just learned about this and have yet to see if it makes a difference. The food i choose for you all had little flasks - and the lysine was in the 50s - but I didn't change the target for protein either - so that didn't help.
 

Lexie88

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Thanks for your reply, I appreciate it :)
I would love to find a dietician but where I live (in France) it's quite the challenge finding someone who's not anti vegan..!
I guess my biggest challenge is eating all the calories that I'd like! Then ideally I'd like to be closer to 38g of protein rather than 44g, but I also want to ensure I'm getting all of the other nutrients (vitamins and minerals). Not to mention, reading about the protective benefits of legumes so wanting to incorporate them daily. Maybe I just want to have my cake and eat it (not literally :cool: ). I didn't realise that you could adjust amino acid targets in cronometer, so thanks for that tip too :)
 
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Lou

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I think this is one of the times it won't matter if the dietician is anti-vegan or not. Even an antivegan dietician can't suggest too many animal sources of protein. Your protein requirements are too low.

Also here in the US, a Registered Dietician is different from a Nutritionist. Something that even most Americans don't know. In California, anyone can hang out a "nutritionist" sign and practice. There are no requirements, tests, or governing body.
But a Registered Dietician is licensed by the State. There are requirements, tests, and a governing body.

So there might be a "translation" issue. So best check and get a reference from your Doctor. I don't believe that there is much room for anti-vegan bias in an RDs meal plan. Especially with a low protein diet

When my bro-in-law was diagnosed he was sent to an RD. He came back with all kinds of pamphlets and reading suggestions. Included in the reading suggestions was the Forks Over Knives cookbook. No one suggested a plant-based diet to him. But the benefits were pretty obvious.

You will probably not be able to include too many legumes in your diet. In making a meal plan for you in Chronometer I had to remove all the legumes I had that day.

I wonder if your Doctor could give you amino acid minimums and maximums. Cronometer has a place to set those. I was going to try to do that for myself but I just don't have the knowledge base.
 
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Lexie88

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Ok, that's good to know, thanks. I'll ask my nephrologist for a referral when I see him next. That's amazing that your brother in law was recommended Forks over knives!!
Thanks again for your advice :)
 
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veganDreama

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I wish you luck on your vegan diet and hope you get the advise you need from more knowledgable posters as I don't know anything about your condition so can't really advise you.
 

Talarp

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Hi Lexie88!

It's hard in our country, yeah.

But possible ! ;)

You have some, online, but not french, like Simnett Nutrition and Vegains, Healthy Crazy Cool too.
 
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poivron

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I don’t know anything about PKD, but in general, plant protein is easier on your kidneys than animal protein. You might want to try to find out where the protein limit comes from, whether it’s for animal protein, and whether any research has been done on the effect of plant-based diets on PKD.

See:
 
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Lexie88

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Thanks for the tips, guys :) no-one knows a vegan nephrologist by any chance? ;) To answer your question Poivron, there has been a bit of research on PKD and plant protein but nothing extensive as far as I can find. There are a few proponents of the 80% carbs/10% fat/10% protein plant-based diet though (like T Colin Campbell and Pam Popper for example), and that's regardless of pre-existing kidney conditions. So I guess I'm wondering how to implement that. I did actually go to see a nutritionist but I ended up disagreeing with a lot of the stuff they said (they were pro oil, I'm not, and they didn't seem to care about protein intake). So I guess I'm back to square one for now. Hopefully I'll find some guidance at some point though! :)