The "phosphorus pyramid": a visual tool for dietary phosphate management in dialysis and CKD patients.BMC Nephrol. 2015 Jan 20; 16:9.BN
Phosphorus retention plays a pivotal role in the onset of mineral and bone disorders (MBD) in chronic kidney disease (CKD). Phosphorus retention commonly occurs as a result of net intestinal absorption exceeding renal excretion or dialysis removal. The dietary phosphorus load is crucial since the early stages of CKD, throughout the whole course of the disease, up to dialysis-dependent end-stage renal disease.Agreement exits regarding the need for dietary phosphate control, but it is quite challenging in the real-life setting. Effective strategies to control dietary phosphorus intake include restricting phosphorus-rich foods, preferring phosphorus sourced from plant origin, boiling as the preferred cooking procedure and avoiding foods with phosphorus-containing additives. Nutritional education is crucial in this regard.Based on the existing literature, we developed the "phosphorus pyramid", namely a novel, visual, user-friendly tool for the nutritional education of patients and health-care professionals. The pyramid consists of six levels in which foods are arranged on the basis of their phosphorus content, phosphorus to protein ratio and phosphorus bioavailability. Each has a colored edge (from green to red) that corresponds to recommended intake frequency, ranging from "unrestricted" to "avoid as much as possible".The aim of the phosphorus pyramid is to support dietary counseling in order to reduce the phosphorus load, a crucial aspect of integrated CKD-MBD management.