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Embracing Diversity: Adapting Renal Diets To Cultural & Ethnic Preferences

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Embracing Diversity: Adapting Renal Diets To Cultural & Ethnic Preferences

Background: We live in a nation rich with an endless variety of customs and traditions.  Those practices affect the diversity of diets in patients with Chronic Kidney Disease (CKD).1 For many new ethnic minorities, the consumption of traditional foods is a means of providing comfort and also a way of sustaining cultural identity.  Food practices are usually one of the last customs to change.2 Did You Know?

  • Dietary adherence must consider the impact of numerous influences on an individual’s behavior such as their ethnic and cultural background2
  • Assessing cultural values surrounding food and food preferences may help improve dietary adherence2
  • Nutrition education and counseling may be enhanced, and dietary adherence improved, with increased cultural sensitivity2
Why Attend This Webinar?
  • It is vital for providers to better understand their patients’ cultural cuisines as this may impact dietary adherence.
  • Good knowledge and communication between healthcare providers and their patients is essential to help patients make changes that will improve outcomes.
  What You Will Learn
  • Learn modifications of three cultural recipes to help patients understand how to adopt a kidney-healthy diet tailored to their unique cultural preferences.
    1. Indian Dish: Atta & Paneer
    2. Chinese Dish: Mapo Tofu
    3. Hispanic Dish: Picadillo con Salsa Verde
  2. Burrowes J. Incorporating Ethnic and Cultural Food Preferences in the Renal Diet. Nutrition 2004 Jan; 11(1): 97-104

Gopika Banker

Gopika Banker, DO, FASN, FACOI


Nephrology & Hypertension Associates of NJ*

Dr. Gopika Banker graduated with Bachelor of Science from Fairleigh Dickinson University, and then pursued her medical degree at University of Medicine and Dentistry of New Jersey (now, Rowan Virtua). After completing a residency in internal medicine with a fellowship in nephrology she has been a practicing nephrologist since the year 2010. She has always enjoyed teaching as evident by the numerous Golden Apple teaching awards she has received throughout the years from various graduating classes of Rowan Virtua as well as Teacher of the Year awards from the internal medicine training program. She has a special interest in nutrition paving the way to improve disease outcomes.

Kelly Chen

Kelly Chen, NP-BC

Nurse Practitioner, Asian American Engagement Director

Stanford Health Care, IgA Nephropathy Foundation*

Kelly Chen is a patient living with IgA Nephropathy as well as a nephrology nurse practitioner. She first received her education from the University of Pennsylvania’s School of Nursing and Wharton School, studying nursing & healthcare management. From first working as a hospital nurse for a few years then transitioning to healthcare consulting, she leveraged her training in both fields. She then went on to complete her graduate nurse practitioner training also at Penn and served as a frontline worker in a medical ICU during the COVID-19 pandemic in New York City at NYU Langone Health. After the pandemic and with her IgAN diagnosis, she returned to her hometown in the San Francisco Bay Area and decided to pivot to caring for kidney patients like herself, working as an ambulatory nephrology nurse practitioner at Stanford Health Care. For the IgAN Foundation, she currently serves as the Medical & Scientific Advisory Board Member as well as the Asian American Engagement Director.

Alejandra Valdez

Alejandra Valdez, RDN, LD

Registered Dietitian Nutritionist

Fresenius Medical Care*

As a Registered Dietitian with over 8 years of experience at Fresenius Medical Care in San Antonio, Texas, Alejandra Valdez is deeply committed to serving the community and individuals in need. Originally from Reynosa, Tamaulipas, Mexico, she holds dual citizenship and has lived in the Rio Grande Valley since 1998. After completing her Bachelor of Science and Dietetic Internship at the University of the Incarnate Word in 2014, I transitioned to working with diabetic and hypertensive patients at a private clinic. There, I specialized in guiding individuals towards sustainable dietary practices to manage weight loss while controlling blood glucose and pressure levels.

Her career path led her to Fresenius, where she discovered her true passion for renal care. As a Mexican American, she takes pride in providing culturally sensitive and relatable dietary guidance to the Hispanic community in this region. Active involvement in the San Antonio Council on Renal Nutrition for over 6 years has allowed her to collaborate with diverse professionals and continuously enhance her expertise in renal nutrition.

Andrea Mohindra

Andrea Mohindra, PharmD

Nephrology Medical Science Liaison

Otsuka Pharmaceutical Development & Commercialization, Inc.*

Andrea Mohindra, PharmD, is a Nephrology Medical Science Liaison covering New York City & Long Island. She earned her PharmD at the University of Rhode Island in South Kingstown, RI. Prior to joining Otsuka in 2021, Dr Mohindra held various leadership roles in retail pharmacy for 15 years in the NJ and NYC regions. Most recently, she held the role of Doctor Partnership Manager for a retail pharmacy startup company and worked closely with Psychiatrists and Migraine Specialists. She is currently licensed in New Jersey and New York state.

*Gopika Banker, Kelly Chen, and Alejandra Valdez are paid consultants of Otsuka Pharmaceutical Development & Commercialization, Inc. (OPDC). Dr Andrea Mohindra is an employee of OPDC.


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