Want to take a pass on kidney stones? Try these 5 things

If you’ve ever had a kidney stone, you’ll do anything to avoid it again. Kidney stones are more common in men than they are in women. Without preventive measures, about 50% of the people who have had kidney stones, might have it again within 10 to 15 years.

Where do kidney stones come from?
Kidney stones develop when certain substances, such as oxalate, calcium, and uric acid, become concentrated enough to form crystals in your kidneys. These crystals then grow larger and form “stones.” About 80% – 85% of kidney stones are made of calcium. The rest are uric acid stones, which form in people with low urine pH levels.

Steps to bypass kidney stones

1. Drink enough water.
People who produced 2 to 2.5 liters of urine daily were 50% less likely to develop kidney stones than those who produced less, as per a 2015 meta-analysis from the National Kidney Foundation. One needs to drink about 2 liters of water daily to produce that amount.

2. Skip high-oxalate foods.
Foods such as beets, spinach, and almonds, raise oxalate levels in the body. But, moderate amounts of low-oxalate foods, such as berries and chocolate, are okay.

3. Enjoy some lemons.
Citrate, a salt in citric acid, helps block stone formation by binding to calcium. Studies have shown that drinking juice of two lemons or ½ cup of lemon juice concentrate diluted in water each day, can increase urine citrate and likely reduce kidney stone risk.

4. Watch the sodium.
Kidney stones can be triggered because of a high-sodium diet. Such a diet increases the amount of calcium in your urine. Federal guidelines suggest limiting total daily sodium intake to 2,300 milligrams (mg). One must try to reduce one’s daily sodium intake to 1,500 mg if sodium has contributed to kidney stones in the past.

5. Cut back on animal protein.
Eating too much animal protein, such as eggs, meat, and seafood, increases the level of uric acid. If you’re prone to stones, limit your daily meat intake to a quantity that is no bigger than a pack of playing cards.