Kill Two Birds With One Stone
Most people don’t realise they have a kidney stone until they are attacked by a sudden pain in their groin or lower back.
Usually formed from the combination of calcium and oxalate, kidney stones are hard crystalline deposits which can be as small as a grain of sand or as large as a golf ball. Passing kidney stones can be painful and treatments can be complicated.
As always, prevention is better than treatment.
Oxalate is present in soil and is taken up by plants so it’s impossible to keep it out of your diet. In your intestine, it usually combines with calcium, magnesium or other minerals and is harmlessly excreted when blood filters through the kidneys to create urine. However, if there is an imbalance of calcium and oxalate when blood is processed by the kidneys they can bind together to form a kidney stone.
The best way to prevent kidney stones is to eat plenty of fruit and vegetables and to drink water. Some plants are naturally high in oxalates such as spinach, rhubarb, potatoes, almonds, cashew nuts, miso, bulgur, cocoa powder and raspberry. But don’t avoid eating these foods altogether – they are nutrition-rich, and also contain fibre, magnesium, phytate, lutein, beta-carotene, and zeaxanthin which will harmlessly metabolise the oxalate.
Efficient metabolism of oxalate depends on the presence of friendly bacteria in the gut, so choose foods rich in prebiotics such as garlic, onions, oats and bananas. Eat foods rich in calcium such as dairy products, broccoli and tinned fish in order to maximise the harmless metabolism of oxalate in the bloodstream.
Also, your body naturally creates oxalate, so it can help to restrict food which contains the necessary precursor chemicals. Stick to one or two helpings of red meat a week, and keep fruit juice, fizzy drinks and fructose as a treat.
Prevention and management of kidney stones is a complicated subject and there is no “one-size-fits-all” dietary approach to prevent kidney stones.
So, if you have any concerns about kidney stones, give us a call. Book a FREE Pre-consultation NOW!