If you have kidney stones, you may be asked by your doctor to follow a special diet. The doctor will begin by running tests to find out the type of kidney stones you have. The results of the tests can then be used to determine what foods you should take and which ones you need to minimize or forget about completely.
In general, though, the following are some of the foods you may be asked to take more of or minimize in your meals as you try to fight this serious medical condition;
Foods to increase in your diet
Calcium and oxalate-rich foods
It is important to increase calcium and oxalate-rich foods in your diet if you’re fighting kidney stones – the most important thing being that the two should be taken together during meals. This is because calcium and oxalate need to bind together in your stomach and intestines before reaching the kidneys. This helps to reduce kidney stones. Some foods to consider include; yogurt with berries, milk-based products, calcium-fortified foods such as cereals, juices, bread, as well as beets on a spinach salad.
Fruits and vegetables
Increasing the portions of vegetables and fruits in your diet can also help with some types of kidney stones. The fruits can be consumed dried, frozen, or fresh. Excellent fruits to consider include those high in citric acid. As for vegetables, go for leafy dark-green types. If eaten in combination with calcium-rich foods, the diet can help prevent kidney stones.
Small amounts of plant-based proteins are also good for people fighting kidney stones. Example of foods rich in plant-based proteins are beans, peas, and lentils. Click here to learn more about vegetarian sources of protein.
Foods to limit
High sodium levels increase your risk of getting kidney stones. To that end, you need to first and foremost reduce your intake of table salt. Form a habit of not adding salt to your foods. And, if eating at a restaurant, ask that no salt be added to your orders. Also, check the label on the processed foods you buy to see how much sodium or compounds of sodium they contain.
Unlike plant-based proteins, animal-based proteins are actually bad for kidney stones. According to kidneystones.com, many sources of animal protein such as pork, red meat, eggs, chicken, and fish, increase the amount of uric acid produced in the body. Eating large amounts of these proteins also reduces citrate which is a critical component of urine. Citrate prevents the formation of kidney stones. But, since protein is important for overall health, ask your doctor how much you can consume and which foods you can safely take.
Cola is high in phosphate, a compound of phosphorous which is known to promote the development of kidney stones. Also, cola drinks contain high amounts of added sugars and syrups. Added sugars and added sucrose increase the risk of kidney stones. For these reasons, you should consider reducing your intake of cola drinks or stop taking those drinks completely.
The truth is that following this diet alone cannot completely shield you from kidney stones. But, they can go a long way in minimizing the risk.
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