Your kidneys are very important organs that filter your blood and get rid of waste products through urine. Kidney stones are solid crystals that are formed due various reasons, mostly due to accumulation of some minerals in your body. Genetics, gender, obesity and surgery can also influence the formation of kidney stones.
People who get kidney stones describe it as one of the most painful experiences a person can have. Here are some things you can do to prevent kidney stones.
1. Don’t skimp on the calcium
Calcium oxalate stones are the most common type of kidney stones. Therefore, people think that reducing calcium intake will help to prevent it. However, this is not the case. Calcium actually binds to oxalate in the gut, making it easier for them to get excreted. You should avoid excess intake of calcium supplements because this has been associated with an increased risk of developing kidney stones.
Obesity and being overweight are risk factors for the formation of kidney stones. This is because these conditions can cause an imbalance in your metabolism that can lead to increased levels of calcium, oxalate and uric acid in your urine.
3. Drink lots of water
Dehydration can lead to kidney stones. This is because water is needed to dilute the minerals that cause kidney stones in urine. Heavy exercise and saunas have great health benefits but they might increase the risk of developing kidney stones. These activities make you sweat and increased sweat production can lead to low water levels.
4. Avoid foods that increase risk of stone formation
Animal proteins such as poultry and eggs can lead to an increase in the levels of uric acid, which is a major component of some kidney stones. Alcohol also does this. Sodium increases urinary excretion of calcium. Soft drinks that have high sugar content increase levels of substances like uric acid and calcium that cause kidney stones. Therefore, it is important to cut down on foods like these.
If you have gotten kidney stones before, there is an increased risk of getting them again. Therefore, you should do all you can to prevent it.
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