Tips to Prevent Kidney Stones
Published On Jan 14, 2021, Updated On Apr 24, 2021
When certain chemicals get accumulated in the urine to form crystals, kidney stones form. The crystals, which may find their way into the urinary tract, expand into larger masses (stones). It induces discomfort if the stone gets stuck anywhere and prevents the flow of urine. Kidney stones are something to be taken lightly. But you can lower the odds of having them with the correct diets, lots of fluids, and proper medicine.
Tips to Prevent Kidney Stones
It is not difficult to avoid kidney stones, however, it does require some dedication. making changes to your current diet and nutrition schedule can go a long way in preventing kidney stones. Here some tips that you can follow to prevent kidney stones
1. Stay Hydrated: The easiest way to avoid kidney stones is to drink more fluids (8 glasses water/day). Your urine output would be poor if you do not drink enough fluids. Low urinary output implies that the urine is more concentrated and that urine salts that create stones are less likely to dissolve. You will require extra water when you sweat a lot/exercise, or if you have a history of cystine stones.
2. Eat Less Sodium: High sodium can contribute to stones in the kidney. Too much salt in the urine stops calcium from being absorbed back from the urine to the blood. Consuming less salt helps retain lower levels of calcium in the urine.
3. Consume Less Oxalate-Rich Foods: Oxalate, a natural compound present in food combines with calcium in the urine to form stones in the kidney. Limiting foods rich in oxalate such as spinach, soy, peanuts, chocolate, coffee, etc can help prevent the formation of stones.
4. Limit Animal Protein: Consuming too much animal protein such as beef, eggs, and fish, increases uric acid levels and can contribute to kidney stones. A high-protein diet also decreases levels of citrate, the urinary chemical that helps prevent the formation of stones, thus increasing the riskof uric acid kidney stones.
5. Reduce Body Weight and Take Supplements/Vitamins: Being overweight/obese can put a strain on the kidneys. However, losing weight steadily and slowly is still necessary. There are many natural supplements/vitamins available such as potassium citrate vitamin B-6, calcium, vitamin D, etc that can help minimize the risk of kidney stones
6. Avoid Caffeine, and Sugary Drinks: Some studies have related sweetened beverages to the formation of kidney stones, particularly those containing high-fructose corn syrup. Caffeine accelerates metabolism leading to dehydration which causes kidney stones.
7. Consume Dietary Calcium and Citric Acid: Though calcium-oxalate is a compound in kidney stones, having dietary calcium such as low-fat cheese, low-fat yogurt, and low-fat milk can reduce kidney stones. Also, intake of citric acid such as unsweetened lime/lemon juice, orange juice, mango/melon juice can prevent kidney stones.
Kidney stones are salt and mineral deposits that crystallize in the kidneys. They become solid, and it can be incredibly painful when they pass in your urine. It is not difficult to avoid kidney stones, but it does require some dedication. It means drinking a lot of water and eating a low sodium diet with minimal animal protein and age-appropriate calcium intake.
Disclaimer: This article is issued in the general public interest and meant for general information purposes only. Readers are advised not to rely on the contents of the article as conclusive in nature and should research further or consult an expert in this regard.