leaching of foods

                      Leaching Of Foods


Leaching of foods is useful in case of high blood sodium and potassium levels. In any renal or kidney disease, the patient’s blood potassium and sodium levels are elevated.

Recommended Normal Intake Of Sodium And Potassium

The recommended normal intake range of sodium lies between 500 mg-2 g/ day. Sodium needs to be restricted in case of swelling of stomach and feets (oedema) and in case of hypertension. Whereas, that recommended for potassium is upto 1500 mg/ day.

Normal Range Of Sodium And Potassium

The normal range of serum sodium is between 130 – 146 m mol/L. Any value more than this means that your serum sodium level has increased. Similarly, the normal range of serum potassium is between 3.6 – 5.0 m mol/ L. Any value more than this range means that the patient is suffering from hyperkalemia.

Process Of Leaching Of Foods

  • Peel the vegetable/ fruit, cut into small pieces and place in a large pot of water.
  • Rinse the vegetable/fruit.
  • Fill the pot with clean water and let the vegetable soak for atleast 4 hours at room temperature (overnight, if in refrigerator).
  • After soaking, rinse the vegetables.
  • Discard the water.
  • Cook as desired.

Vegetables And Fruits Not Suitable For Leaching Of Foods

  • Cauliflowers, mushrooms, carrots, peas, tomato, bottlegourd, guava etc can be easily leached.
  • Avoid vegetables and fruits which have a soft mushy texture (tomatoes, pumpkin, bananas, …..) as they would get dissolved in water during the process of soaking.


Leaching of foods not only reduces the amount of sodium and potassium but it also lowers the amount of water soluble vitamins and several minerals. It should preferably be practiced only when sodium intake is restricted to = 500 mg per day. Such nutritional deficiencies can be prevented by giving adequate amount of supplements. Leaching of foods is only recommended if the levels of serum sodium and potassium are above normal ranges. otherwise, leaching must be prevented.

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