Kidney Diet Tips

Holiday Party Eating Tips

The holidays are upon us! For most, this time of year is about generosity, spending time with family and loved ones, celebrating life and for all that we are thankful. Much of that celebration takes place at holiday parties. Whether it is a work party or a party with family and friends, there is likely to be food.

Plenty of holiday cheer means looking forward to special treats. There are many appetizers and other tempting goodies. This can be stressful for those who are trying to follow a kidney-friendly diet. It’s time for some holiday tips!

Appetizers are typically high in sodium, phosphorus and potassium. These are  nutrients that some kidney patients are trying to limit. High amounts of sodium or salt can cause fluid retention and higher blood pressure. Too much phosphorus in the blood can cause problems with the heart and bones. Too much potassium in the blood can cause muscle weakness and tingling of hands and feet.  All of these situations are avoidable by following a kidney-friendly diet. offers recipes for appetizers that can be made for your upcoming holiday parties. In addition to recipes, consider the following holiday tips when attending parties:

  • Serving sizes are key. Depending on the food, an appetizer serving is likely 1/2 cup—that’s about the size of a computer mouse.
  • Packaged and processed foods likely contain high amounts of sodium, phosphorus and potassium. Choose the fresh options like veggies, fruits and unprocessed meat.
  • Bring an appetizer to share. Make an appetizer from the site to ensure there is at least one kidney-friendly food to enjoy.
  • Stay positive! Attitude is everything. Don’t let the kidney diet limitations get you down. You are taking the best care of yourself when you follow the diet…you might be inspiring others to do the same!

Here are some of my favorite kidney-friendly holiday appetizers:cheeseball-6250-resized

Kara Hansen

Kara has been a dietitian for over 11 years, spending her entire career with DaVita. She enjoys family time, cooking, soccer, hiking and traveling.