Question: I’ve heard some people say that eating too much protein is bad for the kidneys. I know you eat a lot of protein on your diet. What is your opinion? Are you at all concerned about this? (Taken from The New Diabetes Prescription).
Answer: Some people falsely believe that diets with 30 to 40% of the calories coming from protein cause kidney damage. There are zero scientific studies to validate this.
Eating protein will never cause kidney disease, but limiting protein may be a good idea if you already have it. Because the kidneys play a crucial role in the metabolism of all proteins, a diet with lots of protein may put an extra strain on your already-damaged organ, and not eating extra protein might take the stress off.
My own endocrinologist finds nothing wrong with my eating over one gram of protein per pound of body weight, and he is a diabetic himself with kidney disease.
The bottom line is that large amounts of protein are OK so long as your kidneys are fine. If they’re not, speak with your doctor as to whether you should be limiting protein at one or more meals.
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