Kidney stones are a common condition. They are solid mineral deposits that grow within your kidneys, causing excruciating pain when they move through your urinary tract.
Once you have had kidney stones, you are fifty percent more likely to have another within the next ten years.
There is no one confirm method to prevent kidney stones, particularly if you have a family background of the condition. A mixture of diet, lifestyle changes, and some medicines may help decrease your risk.
Making some adjustments to your regular diet and nutrition plan may help to prevent kidney stones. Some of the steps that you can take include:
- Stay hydrated
Drinking water is the perfect method to prevent kidney stones. If you do not drink adequately, your urine output will be less. Low urine output means your urine gets concentrated and less likely to dissolve urine salts that make stones.
Orange juice and lemonade are also good choices. They have citrate, which prevents stones from growing.
Try drinking about eight glasses of fluids regularly, or enough to pass two urine liters. If you sweat a lot, exercise, or have a background of cystine stones, you will require additional fluids.
You can say whether you are hydrated, look at your urine color — it must be clear or pale yellow. If it is dark, you should drink more water and other fluids.
- Eat more calcium-rich foods
The common form of kidney stone is the calcium oxalate stone, leading several individuals to believe they must avoid eating calcium. The opposite is true.
Low-calcium diets may raise your kidney stone and osteoporosis risk.
However, calcium supplements may raise your kidney stones risk. Having calcium supplements with a meal may decrease that risk.
Low-fat milk, low-fat yogurt, and low-fat cheese are all better calcium-rich food options.
- Eat less sodium
A high-salt diet raises your calcium kidney stones risk. Too much salt in the urine prevents calcium from getting reabsorbed from the urine to the blood. This makes high urine calcium, which causes kidney stones.
Consuming less salt helps make urine calcium levels low. The lower the urine calcium, the lower is your risk of forming kidney stones.
To decrease your sodium consumption, read food labels properly.
Foods that are high in sodium are:
- Processed foods, like crackers and chips
- Canned vegetables
- Canned soups
- Foods that have monosodium glutamate
- Foods that have sodium nitrate
- Foods that have sodium bicarbonate (baking soda)
To flavor foods without using salt, get fresh herbs or a salt-free, herbal seasoning blend.
- Eat fewer oxalate-rich foods
Some kidney stones happen due to oxalate. It is a natural compound present in foods that bind with calcium inside the urine to make kidney stones. Reducing oxalate-rich diets may help stop the stones from developing.
Foods high in oxalates are:
- Sweet Potatoes
- Soy Products
- Wheat Bran
Calcium and oxalate tie together in the digestive tract before reaching the kidneys. Hence it is difficult for stones to develop if you consume high-oxalate foods and calcium-rich foods at the same time.
- Eat less animal protein
Foods abundant in animal protein are acidic and may raise urine acid. Too much urine acid forms both calcium oxalate and uric acid kidney stones.
You must try to restrict or avoid:
- Avoid vitamin C supplements
Vitamin C (ascorbic acid) supplementation may bring kidney stones, particularly in men.
According to one study, men who took abundant doses of vitamin C supplements doubled their kidney stone-forming risk. Researchers do not think vitamin C from food has the same risk.
Kidney stones are common. There is no guarantee that preventing it will work; however, it may decrease your risk. Your best bet for avoiding kidney stones is being hydrated and making some dietary changes.
If you got a condition that raises your risk of kidney stones, like persistent urinary tract infection, inflammatory bowel disease, or obesity, consult your specialist. They can provide some methods to manage and reduce your risk of kidney stones.
If you had kidney stones before, ask your urologist to get them tested. Once you understand what form of stone you had, you can have targeted steps to prevent new ones from developing.