The 12 foods that cleanse the kidneys

The 12 foods that cleanse the kidneys

The kidneys are emunctory organs, which means that they participate in the elimination of waste and toxins present in the body. Certain foods can give him a helping hand. What are they ? What are their health and fitness benefits? How to consume them? Overview with Raphaël Gruman, dietitian-nutritionist.

Located in the abdomen, the kidneys play several essential roles in the proper functioning of our body. “In addition to filtering waste from our blood and toxins from the body, the kidneys also regulate blood pressure, balance body fluids and produce essential hormones, including erythropoietin (EPO) which stimulates the production of red blood cells and renin. , which participates in the control of tension”Raphaël Gruman list.

Kidneys and diet: how to cleanse the kidneys quickly and naturally?

All that, all alone… But given the magnitude of the task, a helping hand from food can only be beneficial to these emunctory organs. Especially since many foods contain essential nutrients that can help prevent the buildup of toxins in the kidneys, thereby reducing the risk of developing or worsening kidney disease.

Certain foods are therefore essential to good kidney health, in particular thanks to a balanced protein content, a low salt content and the provision of nutrients (mineral salts) with diuretic properties and antioxidants, molecules that oppose free radicals (generated by oxidative stress) responsible for the development of pathologies.

What are the 12 good foods that purify the kidneys?

Here are the ones to regularly invite to your plate.

What is the best drink for the kidneys?

The water

Our kidneys need water to eliminate waste and accumulated toxins. Ideally, it is recommended to drink between 1.5 and 2 liters of water per day (or approximately 8 glasses of water), depending on the amount of your physical activity and the climate. “If you don’t like “plain” water, you can flavor it with lemon slices, mint leaves, etc. to make it easier to absorb.”recommends Raphaël Gruman. “Using a water bottle marked hour by hour can also be helpful, as can using applications that remind you that it is time to drink water”.


This drink contains theine and theobromine, two particularly diuretic substances: they increase urinary secretions and promote the elimination of sodium and water by the kidneys. The richer the tea is in theine, the greater its diuretic effect. “Concretely, the tea that helps evacuate water the most will be black tea (20 mg/100 ml), followed by green tea (11 mg/100 g). White tea, less rich, will have less effect on urinary production.notes the dietitian.

What vegetables are good for the kidneys?


It is the king of elimination: particularly rich in water (92%), this vegetable has a balanced potassium / sodium ratio which greatly promotes diuresis in the body. “These two minerals are helped in their tasks by the presence of fructan in its composition, a particularly diuretic carbohydrate and mainly present in the white of the vegetable., specifies Raphaël Gruman. Suffice to say that with it, water retention does not last long! “Another advantage: rich in fiber, leek also cleans the intestines by increasing the volume of stools., adds the dietitian. A good way to score a double blow!


Parsley has a strong diuretic and depurative action. “Benefits that it owes to flavonoids, antioxidants as well as the balanced potassium/sodium ratio. Therefore, its consumption helps increase urinary volume and stimulates the functioning of the kidneys, helping to combat water retention, treat urinary infections, prevent gout attacks and the formation of stones. renal”explains our expert.

The cucumber

With a 90% water content, and its large quantity of silicon and sulfur, with draining properties, cucumber is particularly diuretic. This composition allows the kidneys to help in its elimination work and promotes its proper functioning.

What fruits are good for the kidneys?

The watermelon

Long live summer and the return of watermelon! With a water content of 91%, this fruit ensures a good water supply. Coupled with a balanced intake of potassium and sodium, it is the result of elimination: an asset when you regularly suffer from urinary problems or are prone to water retention. In addition, when it comes to calories, it’s hard to do better: a 100 g slice only provides 38 calories.


The apple is one of the most interesting fruits for kidney health: it contains soluble fiber, which promotes good digestion and the elimination of toxins by the kidneys, and a low intake of potassium, an asset when you suffer from ‘renal failure.

Lemon juice

Thanks to its acidity, lemon juice would be an asset in preventing the formation of kidney stones. As it can be aggressive for the stomach wall, we should still avoid drinking it pure: the best is to dilute it in a little water, cold or hot, or to add it to our raw vegetables or our fresh fruit salads.


We knew the benefits of this small berry on eye health, we discovered that it is also beneficial for good kidney health. It owes its benefits to these emunctory organs thanks to its content of antioxidants (flavonoids and vitamin C) as well as potassium: these two nutrients act in synergy to promote the elimination of toxins and improve kidney function. To benefit from its benefits, it is recommended to drink a glass of blackcurrant juice per day. Please note: red fruits are allies for kidney health. Also, to vary the pleasures, also consider adding raspberries, blackberries and strawberries to your menus: they contain fiber and vitamin C, two nutrients which also support kidney function.

What other foods should you choose?

Oily fish

What do salmon, tuna, sardines or mackerel have in common? These fatty fish are all sources of omega-3, essential fatty acids with anti-inflammatory properties. “If this benefit helps reduce inflammation throughout the body, it is also beneficial to the kidneys because these essential fatty acids have the property of helping to limit the development of chronic kidney diseases., assures Raphaël Gruman. Furthermore, these foods are sources of vitamin D, a nutrient known to help prevent the development of kidney cancer.


For good kidney health, it is recommended to consume the right dose of protein. “In excess, this macronutrient is harmful to the kidneys: part of the proteins are transformed into urea, a substance normally filtered by this organ and eliminated in the urine., explains Raphaël Gruman. “The more protein consumed, the more urea. However, when kidney function is reduced (in cases of kidney failure for example) urea accumulates in the blood which gradually poisons the body, including the kidneys.“. To avoid these problems, it is advisable to vary the sources of protein and give pride of place to those of plant origin, better assimilated by the kidneys. You will find them in legumes (such as lentils, chickpeas, beans, soya, etc.) and cereals (rice, semolina, bulgur, quinoa, etc.).

Olive oil

Rich in minerals and antioxidants, this vegetable oil plays the role of “detoxifier” for the kidneys. “It has the property of “purging” these organs and thus promoting their proper functioning, warns the nutritionist. Every day it is recommended to consume a spoonful of olive oil“.

What are the enemy foods that are bad for the kidneys?

Conversely, certain foods should be avoided for the good health of our kidneys. This is the case with foods that are too salty. It is therefore important to limit those with a high salt content, such as cold meats, smoked meat and fish, cheese, salted and semi-salted butter, molluscs and crustaceans, cooked and preserved dishes, appetizer biscuits and chips, dehydrated soups…

What to do in case of kidney disease?

In case of renal failure, the elimination of potassium decreases. Excess increases the risk of serious heart problems. In this case, a suitable diet is essential: in addition to being low in sodium and in foods such as red meats, it must favor foods with a low potassium content, such as oleaginous fruits, candied fruits, cereals. whole grains, chocolate, instant coffee, bananas, avocados…

NO to diets, YES to WW!

Is coffee bad for the kidneys?

It’s a received idea. because, no, coffee is not a drink that is harmful to kidney health. However, be careful not to consume soluble coffee in excess if you suffer from kidney failure.