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What foods affect my risk of developing kidney stones?

There are no global must-avoid foods, although sugary things tend to be bad for everything, including kidney stones. You may have been given a list of 100 foods to avoid, but you really need to pinpoint which mineral is causing your particular kidney stones and address that. Until you know exactly what is out of balance, you cannot know what to avoid. If you have recurrent kidney stones, a 24-hour urine test often helps.
Alberta Scruggs
Nutrition & Dietetics
A tailored nutrition assessment that compliments medical care is most beneficial in the prevention of kidney stone formation. Dietary interventions should include:
  • Increased fluid intake (approximately three liters with half coming from water).
  • Limiting calcium intake between 800 - 1,000 mg/day, unless pregnant or breastfeeding.
  • Limiting high-oxalate containing foods such as spinach, beets, nuts, chocolate, strawberries, beans/legumes and vitamin C in excess of the RDA (75 mg/day for female, 90 mg/day for male).
  • A reduction in grapefruit juice intake.
  • Moderate intake of protein (0.8-1.0 grams per kilogram of body weight).
  • Substituting vegetable protein intake in place of animal protein, periodically.
  • Reduction in sodium intake.
Some low-oxalate foods include:
  • Veggies: Squash, cabbage, red pepper, cauliflower, cucumbers, iceberg lettuce, water chestnuts and turnips.
  • Fruit: Apples, lemons, cherries, melons, nectarines and mango.
  • Grains: Wild and white rice, cornflakes, egg noodles and rye bread.
  • Meat: Beef, lamb, pork, fish, poultry and shellfish.
  • Drinks: Cola, ginger-ale, cider, milk and water.

Continue Learning about Kidney Stones

Kidney Stones

Referred to as "silent stones," kidney stones often do not cause any symptoms. The first indication of a kidney stone is often a sudden feeling of extreme pain as the stone blocks the flow of urine. Kidney stones are one of the mo...

st painful urologic disorders and one of the most common disorders of the urinary tract.Most kidney stones - which are hardened masses that develop from crystals that separate from the urine in the urinary tract - are passed out of the body without surgical intervention by a doctor. A less common type of kidney stone, called a struvite or infection stone, is caused by infection in the urinary tract. Doctors are not always able to diagnose the cause of a kidney stone, which is why it's important to learn how to prevent them in the fist place. A person who has had a kidney stone in the past may likely form another one.
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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.