How I helped my kidneys with Thrive Life

Written by: Kelly Espe


My doctor said I wouldn’t survive the night. Now, I’ve reversed my kidney disease and am back to a healthier, happier life—all because I switched my diet.

I had been in good health my entire life. I played softball on a national level, weight lifted, did 40-mile bike rides weekly, kickboxed, and enjoyed other outdoor activities throughout the week. Needless to say, the word "lazy" was never in my vocabulary.

In October of 2008, that lifestyle came to a screeching halt. A routine ultrasound revealed a huge blood clot in my leg. I was immediately admitted into the ICU where I experienced a pulmonary embolism. The doctors grimly gave my wife, Jeneen, the 1% prognosis for me surviving through the night.

Obviously, I pulled through, but the following March of 2009, my blood clot broke free and resulted in a stroke. These events enrolled me as a lifetime member in the Coumadin/ Warfarin Club.

In June 2016, my routine blood scores indicated that my GFR, (Glomerular Filtration Rate), was at 57. Kidney disease is measured in stages. Later that summer, I found myself toppling into stage 4 with a GFR of 32 and dropping fast. Stage 5 is kidney failure. I was advised to ready myself for dialysis and the probability of a kidney transplant.

I refused to go down that path. We remembered being introduced to Thrive Life a few years earlier, learning about how their food was superior to supermarket foods. We did some more research and decided to jump in with both feet, making Thrive Life our primary food source.

We packed our pantry with Thrive, creating amazing meals and snacks with these nutrient-dense foods. From smoothies with high antioxidants to healthy tacos (yes, that’s a thing!), everything we ate included Thrive Life. Because the food stayed fresh, I was able to get a larger variety of foods into my diet. And because Thrive Life’s food quality is a higher standard than even organic foods you buy at the grocery store, those nutrients began to make their impact on my body.

In three weeks of eating healthy, clean whole foods, my numbers started improving steadily. In roughly nine weeks, my GFR values recovered to an astounding 60! With this healthier way of eating, my numbers continued to climb to a whopping 92! I'm no longer a kidney care patient; in fact, my doctor said he didn't need to see me anymore. I've never been so happy to be kicked out of a “club!"

I feel great. I have lost weight and am not taking any kidney meds, nor am I receiving kidney care. We definitely notice the difference of eating a clean, whole food diet and incorporating Thrive Foods into this way of living.