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Foods to Avoid with Kidney Stones

Foods to Avoid with Kidney Stones

An important part of the treatment of people with kidney stones is avoiding certain foods which may aggravate the condition. This article discusses all such foods.
Rajib Singha
Last Updated: Apr 23, 2018
The condition of kidney stones is known as renal lithiasis. It is a common medical condition that affects most people across the world. These stones are formed when minerals and salts in the urine stick together. They can occur in one or both the kidneys. Some kidney stones stay in the kidneys and some may get eliminated from the body through the urinary tract. Usually small kidney stones do not cause symptoms and pass out from the body without getting detected. Painful symptoms start occurring if the stones get stuck to the kidneys, pass along the ureter, or trigger an infection.
Food Bad for People With Kidney Stones
Kidney stones are of different types which include calcium stones, uric acid stones, struvite stones, and cystine stones. Out of these, calcium stones are the most common. These stones occur in the form of calcium oxalate. People with calcium oxalate stones are recommended to avoid foods that contain oxalates, some of which may include:
• Beans
• Beet greens
• Beetroot
• Beets
• Blackberries
• Black tea
• Blueberries
• Carob powder
• Celery
• Chard
• Chocolate products
• Coffee
• Collards
• Dark leafy greens
• Draft beer
• Eggplant
• Endive
• Figs
• Fruit cake
• Gooseberries
• Green peppers
• Grits (white corn)
• Kiwifruit
• Leeks
• Legume
• Nuts
• Okra
• Parsley
• Peanut oil
• Pralines
• Raspberries (black)
• Red currants
• Rhubarb
• Soy products
• Spinach
• Strawberries
• Summer squash
• Sweet potatoes
• Swiss chard
• Tangerines
• Wheat germ
• Wheat bran
Another group of foods that must be avoided are those which contain purines. Purines are found in the body and in certain foods. When these are broken down, the body forms uric acid. And high levels of uric acid increase the risk of uric acid kidney stones. So people prone to this type of kidney stones are recommended to avoid foods high in purine such as meat products, fish and poultry.
Symptoms of Renal Lithiasis
Until a kidney stone makes its way down to the ureter, which is the tube connecting the kidney and bladder, it does not cause any symptoms. Otherwise, symptoms may include severe pain in the side and back and below the ribs. This pain may radiate to the lower abdominal area and that of the groin. Pain during urination is also a common symptom as the stones try to pass through the urinary tract. Urine may become pink, red or brown and the patient may have a persistent urge to urinate. Nausea and vomiting, accompanied by fever and chills are some more symptoms of kidney stones.
Prevention
The most recommended method to reduce the risk of kidney stones is to drink lots of water. Daily intake of water should be such that the urine must come out light yellow or clear like water and its output must be about 2.5 liters a day. Needless to say, if you have a history of kidney stones then you would be advised to avoid oxalate foods in your diet to prevent any recurrences. A diet that is low in salt and animal protein also helps in cutting down the risk of kidney stones. Foods rich in calcium have no association with kidney stones and therefore must not be excluded from the diet unless a doctor suggests otherwise. However, people must exercise caution with calcium supplements.
Kidney stones do not cause any permanent damage or complications because they are usually detected and treated on time. In most cases, drinking plenty of water and avoiding certain foods are good enough to treat the condition without any prescription-strength medicines. However, proper medical treatment does help in preventing recurrences of the stones in future.
Disclaimer:: The information provided in this article is solely for educating the reader. It is not intended to be a substitute for the advice of a medical expert.