Kidney stones medically termed as renal lithiasis is a painful condition that afflicts a number of people around the world. Ideally the kidney removes waste material and mineral deposits from the body, resulting in urine formation.
However due to dehydration and some other problems the kidneys are unable to dissolve these particles resulting in deposits of minerals and hard stones. The common minerals that form deposits include uric acid, calcium phosphate, calcium oxalate and cystine.
The kidney stones can vary in size from being small grain like particles to large stones. While the smaller stones are eliminated by the body easily, larger kidney stones can pose problems such a severe pain, painful and scanty urination along with nausea, vomiting and fever. One of the prime causes of kidney stones is an improper diet. Insufficient fluid intake, excess of refined foods and consuming foods containing high levels of oxalic acid can lead to formation of kidney stones.
The most common types of kidney stones are the calcium phosphate and oxalate stones. Avoiding foods rich in oxalic acid is essential as the oxalate tends to combine with the calcium in the intestines leading to stone formation. Some of the oxalate rich foods that you need to steer clear off are beets, beans, eggplant, gooseberries, raspberries, strawberries, sweet potatoes, spinach, peanuts, wheat bran, tea, cocoa and chocolate.
Restrict the oxalate intake to not more than 50 mg a day if suffering from the problem of kidney stones. In addition to reduction of oxalates, the intake of vitamin C supplements and foods should also be restricted.
Avoid sugar and excess sodium in your diet. Restricting the sodium intake to not more than 3500 mg and reducing the intake of sugary packaged foods can help keep the problem of kidney stones at bay.
In addition to this you also need to restrict the amount of animal proteins in the diet.This is because uric acid kidney stones are formed by the metabolism of purines in the diet. Foods containing high purine content like liver, kidney and sweetbreads should be restricted.
Fluid intake is essential if you want to prevent kidney stones. Drinking large amounts of water, juices and other liquids help in diluting the minerals in the urine that can lead to formation of kidney stones. In addition to this increase the intake of fruits and vegetables in the diet. Citrus fruit juices such as orange juice, grapefruit juice and lemonades help in prevention of kidney stones.