Foods to Avoid When You Have Kidney Stones

Like it or not, kidney stones are a growing concern among medical experts today.  Our diets and poor habits are the most likely thing to blame but the good news is that there are certain foods that you can avoid if you are at risk for developing kidney stones.

Who is at risk?

White men over the age of 30 seem to be the highest at risk of having kidney stones and this is all the way across the board UNLESS you live in the southeastern part of the US.  The amount of kidney stone cases is so large in this region that doctors have nicknamed the section, the “stone belt”.

Food to avoid when you have kidney stones

Kidney stones come mainly in 4 varieties- calcium, struvite, cystine and finally uric acid.  That said, nearly 80% of the kidney stones are comprised of calcium deposits, most notably the oxalate type.

Because of this, you should eliminate foods from your diet that is high in oxalic acid. Some of the foods that have high amounts of this oxalic acid include spinach, tomatoes, eggplant, summer squash, peanuts, almonds, sweet potatoes and cocoa.

Animal fat is also known to increase the risk of getting a kidney stone because it causes your body to actually release calcium which in turn will build up in your kidneys

This sounds like a no brainer but calcium rich dairy products can create problems as well.  It isn’t the fact that dairy products are so rich in calcium though.  It is because the digestive system has problems breaking down dairy products into something it can use and most of the nutrients wind up as waste for the kidneys to filter through.

Studies have shown that grapefruit juice increases the risk of kidney stones as well and should be avoided.

As hard as it may sound in this day and age, the more you stay away from sugar, the better off you are.  Sugar actually leeches calcium from the bones and sends it first to the kidneys before it passes out as waste through the urinary tract.  As you would imagine, this would make the urine calcium rich which would increase the risk of developing a kidney stone.

Finally, reduce all the things that leech water from your body and dehydrate you.  This includes caffeine and alcohol as well salt because these things will leech water from your urine which in turn will increase the concentration of minerals that you will have to pass, increasing the risk of kidney stones.