As Muslims around Malaysia fast during the Ramadan month, some kidney patients are also eager to fulfill their religious duties with the advice of their doctors. But how can they do this in a safe and healthy manner while looking after their kidney condition? Here, the National Kidney Foundation (NKF) of Malaysia provides a set of guidelines to help Chronic Kidney Disease (CKD) patients stay healthy throughout the fasting period and upcoming Raya celebration.

Chronic Kidney Disease is an irreversible disease involving the gradual loss of kidney function. The disease is categorized into five stages based on severity and it strikes 9 out of 100 Malaysians. The stage of CKD determines whether it is safe for a patient to fast, as abstaining from food and water for long hours can lead to dehydration.

Haemodialysis patients typically undergo dialysis treatment three times per week and are not advised to fast due to IV fluid intake during the procedure. However, these patients can fast during the rest of the week. The key here is balance and adherence to the doctor’s advice.

In terms of diet, dialysis patients should try their best to adhere to their dialysis diet, some of the important diet tips are as follows:

1.  Ensure an adequate protein intake during Iftar and Sahur. Never skip meals. For those who are in hurry, pre-packed egg / chicken sandwiches are some good quick meal options.

2.  Meals after Tarawih can be a good substitute for pre-bed snack.

3. Consuming fluid as recommended by dietician to prevent over or dehydration. Avoid preserved / processed food (pickles, salted fish, canned food etc.) as they contain high amount of phosphorus and sodium.

4.  Prevent over-consumption of potassium rich food such as dates, mango juice, coconut water and nut-based dessert. Moderation is the key and patients are advised to only take one to two dates a day.

5.  Last but not least, dialysis patient who choose to fast must be aware of all the potential risks associated with Ramadan fasting and look out for the signs and symptoms in order to break the fast when needed. In general, those who have history of recurring hypoglycaemia, non-compliance to medication and dialysis treatment are strongly advised not to fast.              

NKF is a one-stop national resource centre for all kidney-related matters towards improving the lives of kidney patients. In order to promote healthy living amongst Malaysians of all ages, NKF has launched a social media campaign known as #SihatBersama throughout the year in conjunction with its 50th anniversary.

Through this campaign, NKF shares a series of insightful food infographics and health tips as a primary focus to encourage all Malaysians, including kidney disease patients, to improve their daily habits. In celebration of the amazing 50 years, NKF partners with health-focused eateries and fitness brands to giveaway prizes through a social media contest which is open to all Malaysians.

Visit @nkfmy on Facebook and Instagram to participate and stay up to date with NKF’s latest initiatives.

NKF wishes all Muslims “Selamat Berpuasa” this Ramadan and “Selamat Hari Raya” ahead!

For more information on NKF public education and activities or to donate towards the organisation’s efforts, please visit or call 03-7954 9048.


The National Kidney Foundation (NKF) Malaysia is a non-profit charitable organization dedicated to helping Malaysians suffering from end stage kidney failure who lack access to or cannot afford dialysis treatment. NKF currently has over 1,600 dialysis patients receiving subsidized dialysis treatment in over 28 dialysis centres nationwide.
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