Low Phosphorus Pocket Guide

DOWNLOAD Pocket Book

Phosphorus is a mineral that helps build strong, healthy bones and keeps muscles working correctly. When food containing phosphorus is consumed and digested, the small intestines absorb it and it becomes stored in the bones. Kidney disease may cause the kidneys t be unable to remove excess phosphorus from the blood. High phosphorus levels cause bones to weaken and lead to dangerous calcium deposits in blood vessels, eyes, lungs and heart. Levels of phosphorus in the blood should be monitored by a healthcare provider. The normal level of phosphorus should range form 2.4 to 4.1. Low phosphorus diets limit total consumption to 800-1,000 mg daily. Check with your physician to receive the daily limit that is right for you.

  • Know what foods are lower in phosphorus.
  • Pay close attention to serving size.
  • Eat smaller portions of foods that are high in protein.
  • Eat fresh fruits and vegetables.
  • Ask you physician about using phosphate binders at meal time.
  • Avoid prepackaged foods that contain added phosphorus. Look for phosphorus, or for words with PHOS, on ingredient labels, the the one below.

  • All fruits are low in phosphorus
  • All vegetables are low in phosphorus
  • Breads (white),
  • Crackers (not wheat)
  • Pasta
  • Popcorn
  • Corn and Rice cereal
  • Rice (white)
  • Fresh meat (check for
  • added PHOS)
  • Hot Dog
  • Sausage
  • Egg


  • Fruit Juices
  • Light colored soda
  • Tea
  • Coffee (no dairy)
  • Home-brewed Iced Tea

Examples of Foods That May Have Added Phosphorus:

  • Frozen uncooked meats
  • and poultry
  • Frozen baked goods
  • Chicken nuggets
  • Cereals, cereal bars
  • Baking mixes
  • Instant puddings
  • Sauces

  • Fruit 1/2 cup fresh, canned or cooked fruit, or 1/2 cup juice.
  • Vegetables or cooked vegetables, 1 cup raw leafy vegetables, or 1/2 cup juice.
  • Meat is 1-3 ounces cooked.
  • Bread is one slice
  • Egg is 1 egg or 1/4 cup egg substitute
  • Rice, noodles, and pasta is 1/3 cup cooked.

  • Cheese
  • Cottage Cheese
  • Yogurt
  • Ice Cream
  • Pudding
  • Almonds
  • Cashews
  • Pistachios
  • Peanut Butter
  • Pecans
  • Pumpkin Seeds
  • Sunflower Seeds

Dried Beans and Peas

  • Basked Beans
  • Black Beans
  • Garbanzo Beans
  • Kidney Beans
  • Lentils
  • Pinto Beans
  • Refried Beans
  • Split Peas
  • Soy Beans
  • Fish and Seafood
  • Bacon
  • Beef
  • Lamb
  • Liver
  • Turkey
  • Veal


  • Bran Cereals
  • Oatmeal
  • Whole Grain Products


  • Beer/Ale
  • Cocoa
  • Chocolate Drinks
  • Dark Soda
  • Bottled Iced Tea


Get help coping with the challenges of living with FSGS through support groups like NephCure. Learn more about our how we can support you.


Eat a diet low in salt and processed foods to manage your blood pressure and reduce strain on your kidneys. Learn more about a kidney-friendly diet and get our cookbook.

Related Resources


Plant-Based Diet and Kidney Disease


Mental Health Patient and Caregiver Panel


Newly Diagnosed Parents – Nephrotic Syndrome 101

Educational Materials

School Accomodations


Sign up to get NephCure’s latest updates.

This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.