Stones in the kidney are common and many people suffer from the pain of kidney stones. Generally kidney stones for the first time appear in people in the age range of 20-50 years. The kidneys clean the blood and filter the waste products for creation of urine. If there is an imbalance of minerals and salts, the minerals can form crystals. Generally, these small crystals go out of the body without causing any harm, but sometimes they build up inside the kidneys and form kidney stones.
Causes of kidney stones
Even though there are no particular causes of kidney stones, but the risk increases because of the factors-
- Genetics- family history of kidney stones
- Age is 20 and 50
- Don’t drink enough fluids
- Taking any specific medicines like protease inhibitors and diuretics
- Too much vitamin C or calcium/vitamin D supplements
- Too much salt or protein in your diet
- Taking too many antacids
- Have a medical condition that affects the shape or structure of your kidney
- Suffering from conditions like hyperparathyroidism, high blood pressure or Crohn's disease
- Suffering from cystitis the bacteria causing cystitis is capable of breaking down an element present in urine called urea, which may result in kidney stones
Kidney Stones treatment
It is recommended in case of stones smaller than 5 mm, which can normally pass with the urine.
Your urologist may prescribe some antibiotics if there is any infection. He may also prescribe alpha-blockers that help stones to pass out with urine.
in case of big kidney stones or if the stones are blocking ureter, than surgery is necessary. Ureteroscopic stone removal, Percutaneous nephrolithotomy (PCNL) are some surgery procedures which remove the kidney stones from your kidney.
Diet has a big role to play in case of kidney stone. Your diet affects the risk of developing kidney stones. You also need to follow a specific diet and avoid some foods during and after treatment of your kidney stone.
Diet and the risk of kidney stones
If concentration of some substances in the urine like calcium, phosphorous, oxlate increases, then kidney stones form in the body. After using the food for energy and repair of tissues, the extra and the waste products reach the kidneys through the bloodstream. Those waste products are eliminated from the body as urine. So, diet is a crucial factor in increasing the possibility and risk of future kidney stone development. Some specific foods may increase the risk of stone formation.
Dietary changes for prevention of kidney stones
If you make some dietary changes, you'll be able to prevent kidney stones. It is important to increase the fluid intake. You also need to change the consumption habit of animal protein, sodium, oxlate and calcium to prevent future kidney stone formation.
Drinking lots of fluids every day is a very effective way of preventing different types of kidney stones. You should drink 2 to 3 litres of fluid every day. Patients with cystine stones need to drink more fluids.
Dietary changes necessary based on the type of kidney stone–
Calcium Oxalate Stones
- reduce sodium
- reduce animal protein, like meat, eggs, and fish
- get more calcium from food or taking calcium supplements with food
- avoid foods high in oxalate, such as spinach, rhubarb, nuts, and wheat bran
Calcium Phosphate Stones
- reduce sodium
- reduce animal protein
- Get more calcium from food or taking calcium supplements with food
Uric Acid Stones
- limit animal protein
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