Kidney stones formation is by far a very common problem today. If you too are dealing with it, then this article on kidney stones dietary restrictions will definitely provide some guidance.
Formation of stones in the kidney usually occur when there are too much of substance deposits in the urine that stick together and form stones. The kind and the size of stones varies from person to person. While some kidney stones may be as small as a sand grain, they can also be as big and significant as golf balls. According to the National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases, there are four main kinds of kidney stones that are commonly found in human beings.
These are the calcium-oxalate stones, that are formed due to high concentration of calcium in the kidneys; the struvite stones, that are formed of magnesium and ammonia deposits and are usually found in people who have been through a urinary tract infection; the uric Acid stones, which form due to presence of too much of uric acid in the body; and last but not the least, the cystine stones, which form due to either genetic kidney disease, or metabolic kidney disease. Therefore, when it comes to the kidney stones dietary restrictions, one has to consider the kind of stones that one has and what should be restricted, so that the formation of stones in the kidney can be prevented or flushed out.
Dietary Restrictions for Kidney Stones
Diet plays a very important role when it comes to preventing occurrence or re-occurrence of kidney stones. The stones are formed in the kidneys, while some stones stay in the kidneys, some can travel all the way from the urinary tract into the bladder. While in case of small stones, this may not be painful, however, in case of bigger stones, one may experience severe pain varying from 15-60 minutes.
While treatment is not necessary for smaller stones as they can automatically flush out of the body, larger stones may require medical assistance. Another problem with people suffering from kidney stones is that they can recur. Therefore, following a healthy kidney stone diet needs to be a part of your daily lifestyle to minimize recurrence. So what is it that you can eat and what is it that you can’t?
No Protein Rich Foods
If the kind of kidney stones that you have are uric acid stones, this means that you have to restrict yourself from eating foods that are high in proteins, especially red meat like pork and beef. Even food items like eggs, fish and other types of meat that are high in proteins should be minimized. The recommended dietary allowance of protein is 0.8 grams per kilogram of your body weight. So stick to that value and cut down on your high protein rich diet.
Drink a Lot of Fluids
In order to flush out the existing kidney stones in the body, it is essential to drink loads of fluids and water so that the existing particles and substances in the kidney not only flush out, but also, so that they don’t accumulate again. Try to drink at least 8 oz of water every hour. Apart from that, also drink a lot of healthy fruit juices. Keep in mind that by healthy fluids I don’t mean tea, coffee or alcohol. If you love your kidneys, stay away from these substances.
Say NO to Chocolates
I know you would be really unhappy to read this point, but yes, studies reveal that indulging in chocolates too can trigger the formation of kidney stones because they have high concentration of oxalate and it is very important for people with kidney stones to avoid it.
Not all Fruits and Veggies are Good
Well, consuming healthy fruits and vegetables is something that almost each and every dietitian will recommend, be it for a weight loss diet, or for controlling certain health conditions. There are various fruits and vegetables that are rich in oxalate. These include, certain kinds of berries, spinach, beans, nuts, sweet potatoes, eggplant and so on. So make sure that you don’t consume those food items that are again, rich in oxalate.
Watch out on the Sodium, Sugar and Calcium!
As mentioned earlier, apart from oxalate, calcium deposits, along with other substances present within the kidneys can also lead to formation of kidney stones. Therefore, one must avoid consuming too much of calcium in the diet. However, make sure that calcium is important for the bones so make sure that you consume the standard calcium requirement of your body which generally varies between 1000-1200 milligrams for adults aged over 19. Consult with your dietitian for your individual case.
For sodium, you must avoid processed foods as they are high in salt. Salt also makes you lose calcium from the body which makes the calcium deposit in the kidney. So limit your daily sodium intake to 2400 mg per day. Even food items rich in high sugar should be completely avoided.
If you follow these diet restrictions strictly, you may actually flush out the kidney stones automatically without any medication. Although, keep in mind that this is applicable only if the kidney stones are smaller in size. Eat foods that have high insoluble fiber like rice, wheat, rye and barley. These foods will actually help in prevention of kidney stones. Even beverages like cola, energy drinks, etc., should be completely avoided. Instead, drink 12 glasses of water, lime juice to keep your fluid levels high. Have a safe and healthy tomorrow.