Intermittent Fasting and CKD

Is breakfast the most important meal of the day? You’ve probably heard about intermittent fasting (IF) and wonder if you should be having breakfast or not. This post will dive deeper into what IF is and some breakfast options for CKD. Can you follow intermittent fasting and CKD?

Breakfast just means the first meal of the day, for some this could be in the morning for other this may be at another point in the day if you follow intermittent fasting.

Ok but what exactly is IF. Well, it is a diet where you reduce your eating period to a shorter time. There are many different types of IF like restricted time fasting (where you eat between certain hours of the day and fast the remaining) and alternate day fasting. But let’s break down some of the risks and benefits of intermittent fasting.

Benefits of Intermittent Fasting

  • Weight loss
  • Improved blood sugar control
  • Improved blood pressure

Risks of Intermittent Fasting

  •  Low blood sugars, especially if you use diabetes medications or insulin
  • Malnutrition, especially if you are not eating enough nutrients during your eating period
  • Poor sustainability
  • Physiological changes like dizziness, lightheadedness, low energy, hunger, irritability, mood swings, temperature sensitivity
  • Weight regain if intermittent fasting is stopped

What about intermittent fasting and CKD?

What about intermittent fasting and CKD? Well there has not been enough research in those with CKD, and current studies have inconclusive results for if intermittent fasting can improve eGFR. It is best to speak with your healthcare team or renal dietitian for personalized recommendations to improve your kidney function.

So you might be wondering, well what does a good breakfast look like then? Remembering that we want to include fibre at each meal to help keep us full, manage our blood sugar and reduce cholesterol, focusing in opportunities to include high fibre foods is important. So, here are my top breakfast options for CKD.

Breakfast options for CKD

Tofu Scramble


  • ¼ cup firm tofu
  • 1 tsp olive oil
  • ½ bell pepper, sliced
  • ¼ cup white onion, sliced
  • ¼ cup mushroom, sliced
  • ¼ tsp black pepper
  • ½ tsp garlic powder


  1. Crumble tofu with a fork into small bite-sized pieces.
  2. Heat a medium-size pan on medium-high heat, add olive oil and vegetables. Sautee until tender about 5 minutes.
  3. Add tofu, black pepper, garlic powder to pan with vegetables and cook 2 minutes
  4. Serve with bread like sourdough.

Makes 1 serving. Per serving: 23 g protein, 517 mg potassium, 280 mg phosphorus, 205 mg sodium

Chia Seed Pudding


  • 3 TBSP chia seeds
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • ½ tsp cinnamon
  • ¾ cup milk or your favourite unsweetened dairy-free beverage
  • ½ cup raspberries or your favourite berry


  1. In a small bowl mix chia seeds, vanilla, cinnamon and milk together. Leave on the counter for 15 minutes.
  2. Top with berries and stir to enjoy.

Makes 1 serving. Per serving: 12 g protein, 483 mg potassium, 445 mg phosphorus, 92 mg sodium

Egg Bites


  • 1 large egg
  • 1/4 cup egg white
  • 1/8 cup arugula
  • 1/8 cup red pepper, chopped
  • 1 TBSP green onion, chopped green only
  • 1 TBSP goat cheese
  • ¼ tsp black pepper


  1. Preheat oven to 375 F.
  2. Spray 2 sections of muffin tin with non-stick cooking spray.
  3. In a small bowl, combine all ingredients until mixed well.
  4. Divide between prepared muffin tin and bake for 15-20 min until fluffy and cooked thoroughly in the middle.

Makes 1 serving. Per serving: 18 g protein, 232 mg potassium, 161 mg phosphorus, 269 mg sodium

Looking for more breakfast ideas and support?

Do you need some support with planning nutritious and delicious meals to help preserve your kidney function? Well, Emily offers personalized meal planning and grocery shopping lists to help support you on your kidney nutrition journey and building your confidence. Connect with Emily here.

Want to learn more about Emily? Learn more here.

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