Dietary Acid Load and Predialysis Serum Bicarbonate Levels in Patients With End-Stage Renal Disease


      Maintaining the predialysis serum bicarbonate at a recommended level is critical in patients undergoing hemodialysis. Therefore, the present study investigated the association between dietary acid load (DAL) and serum predialysis bicarbonate levels in patients with end-stage renal disease.


      Adult patients undergoing hemodialysis were enrolled in this cross-sectional study. Diet was assessed using a semiquantitative food frequency questionnaire. DAL was calculated with 2 validated indices: potential renal acid load (PRAL) and net endogenous acid production (NEAP). Values regarding predialysis serum bicarbonate level and serum electrolytes were obtained from the participant’s medical records. The multiple linear regression analysis was used to determine the association between DAL indices and predialysis serum bicarbonate level.


      The number of hemodialysis patients eligible for this study was 122. The participants’ mean age and body mass index was 57.14 ± 3.8 years and 25.2 ± 4.9 kg/m2, respectively. About 65.6% of participants were male. The mean serum levels of predialysis bicarbonate were 21.59 ± 3.1 mEq/L. Also, 47.5% of patients had predialysis serum bicarbonate levels below the recommended value. The mean values of PRAL and NEAP were −2.8 ± 7.48 and 42.7 ± 10.1 mEq/day, respectively. PRAL significantly and inversely predicted predialysis serum bicarbonate level independent of covariates (standardized β = −0.38; P < .001). Also, NEAP was independently and inversely associated with predialysis bicarbonate level (standardized β = −0.40; P < .001). Consuming vegetables such as lettuce, tomato, cucumber, spinach, and dried fruits as well as low-fat milk, plain yogurt, and cream cheese were positively correlated to predialysis serum bicarbonate level. However, the canned tuna had a negative correlation with the predialysis serum bicarbonate.


      The study’s findings showed that the lower DAL was associated with higher predialysis serum bicarbonate levels in patients with end-stage renal disease. Due to the cross-sectional nature of the present study, prospective cohorts or well-controlled clinical trials are needed to confirm our result.


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