The Kidney Stone Diet: Foods and Drinks

They are the cause of extremely painful colic and it is not uncommon for them to rush to the emergency room in search of a more effective solution than ordinary over-the-counter painkillers. Many have suffered from it at least once in their life and, unfortunately, we risk facing relapses. Because, unfortunately, the kidney stones they can come back, and because relapses carry the risk of ending up with even serious complications.

THE food and the drinks that we consume every day are essential to counteract the appearance of these deposits, similar to calculations of considerable size, which can obstruct the urinary tract. Some may reduce the risk of kidney stones, others may increase it. The ideal diet also depends on the type of stones you are dealing with. For this reason, it is essential to contact a nutritionist to receive personalized indications: only in this way will you be sure to exclude foods and drinks that can increase the risks for your kidneys and to include, at instead, those who can help you keep the math going. . Here are the suggestions you may receive.

Diet for Kidney Stones

To drink a lot of water

While it’s true that there’s no one-size-fits-all diet for kidney stones, it’s equally true that you’re dealing with any type of stone. you absolutely have to drink a lot of water. And there is no cure: no medicine will be effective if its intake is not associated with adequate water consumption.

Indeed, drinking enough can dilute the urine and therefore reduce the concentration of all the substances that can contribute to the formation of kidney stones. The general recommendation is to drink enough to allow a urine output of 2 to 2.5 liters per day, but in the case of kidneys associated with an excessive concentration of cystine, an even higher output is recommended (at least 3 liters per day). . Be careful especially when you sweat a lot: the classic 2 to 2.5 liters of water a day may not be enough to produce as much urine! Also remember that dehydration is around the corner, even during the winter. In short, never underestimate the importance of drinking throughout the day.

You can drink safelytap water. If, on the contrary, you drink the bottled one, you prefer water rich in bicarbonate (at least 1500mg/L) no calcium. It is not necessary to drop calcium levels excessively, in fact it could be counterproductive. Indeed, on the one hand, your body could recover the calcium that it does not obtain from drinks and food from the bones, weakening them, on the other hand a reduced intake of calcium from food could increase the absorption of oxalates present in food. The latter, if they are too concentrated, are one of the factors that promote the formation of kidney stones. For that, there is no need to ban football; Instead, avoid water that contains more than 150 mg/L.

Choose the right drinks

As with other beverages, the Orange juice can be an ally against kidney stones due to its high content of citric acid; however, it is better to prepare it fresh than to buy it ready to eat, to avoid the presence of preservatives (such as ascorbic acid) which can promote the opposite effect compared to that sought. In addition, the consumption of the whole fruit remains preferable to that of the fruit. In short, as far as possible it is better to prefer an orange to its juice.

the herbal and fruit infusions they can be consumed freely, whereas at the theoretical level tea and coffee could create problems. It all depends on the variety, the culture and the preparation, which affect the levels of oxalates they contain. Despite this, tea and coffee have been associated with a reduced risk of stones, probably because they promote diuresis. For this reason, the solution is to compromise, consuming them in not excessive amounts.

Better to avoid Sugary drinks (especially if they contain phosphoric acid) and the alcoholic and pay attention to fruit and vegetable juices (e.g. rhubarb or beet), as they could provide large amounts of oxalates.

Don’t overdo the protein

A high consumption of protein it can decrease the pH of the urine and, therefore, its calcium level. Conversely, it may limit the excretion of citrate, which is rather associated with a reduction in the risk of stones. For this reason, it is essential not to exceed the current indications that the daily protein intake should be equal to 1 gram per kg of body weight (or 1.1 in the case of the elderly); Eventually, it may be useful to go down to 0.8 grams per kg of body weight per day: talk to your nutritionist.

Eat fruits and vegetables

Available information suggests that balancing their protein intake and consumption is even more important than daily protein intake. fruits and vegetables. In fact, the latter can increase the pH of urine and the levels of citrate it contains, thus counteracting the adverse effects of protein. Make way for fruits and vegetables, with a few precautions, however. In particular, it is good to pay attention to the consumption of those rich in oxalates, such as spinach, sorrel, rhubarb, beets, sweet potato, ochre, green olives, blueberries, kiwi and figs.

Boiling vegetables in water significantly reduces oxalate levels. On the other hand, it can also lead to the loss of desirable nutrients. A good compromise can be to combine those rich in oxalates, such as spinach, with a source of calcium, such as cheese.. In this case it is possible to avoid overcooking vegetables by limiting the intestinal absorption of oxalates with the presence of calcium in the same meal.

Calcium should not be eliminated from the diet against kidney stones. It is rather good to take a balanced daily dose, between 1000 and 1200 mg.

Calibrate other oxalate-rich foods

In addition to the fruits and vegetables mentioned, other foods high in oxalates I am:

  • soy
  • beans
  • green beans
  • amaranth
  • quinoa
  • buckwheat
  • whole wheat and its bran
  • sesame
  • almonds
  • Hazelnut
  • pistachios
  • cocoa
  • licorice root
  • black pepper
  • parsley

Ask your nutritionist how to include them in your diet to avoid stones!

Reduce salt

Finally, you may also be advised to reduce salt, because it can promote stones by promoting the increase of calcium in the urine. Don’t forget: a pinch is enough to cook, preferably in its iodized form!

Graduated in biological sciences with a doctorate in genetic and biomolecular sciences, she worked in the field of research until 2009 more…

The information provided on is designed to
integrate, not replacethe relationship between a patient and his physician.

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