Kidney stones are one of the most dangerous problems regarding the health of these organs. It is important to pay attention to kidney health, so that this condition does not develop and does not harm a person’s daily life.
According to information from the National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases (NIDDK), kidney stones are pieces of solid material that form in one or both kidneys when there are high levels of certain minerals in the urine.
However, according to the source consulted, “kidney stones rarely cause permanent damage if not treated by a health professional.”
Symptoms usually include severe pain in the back and side, lower abdomen or groin. There is also often blood in the urine. In case of noticing these signs, it is convenient to go to a health professional to obtain an accurate diagnosis and define the appropriate treatment.
What are the causes of kidney stones?
Medline Plus Medical Encyclopedia reports that kidney stones are a common problem. Likewise, note that some are hereditary and may also occur in premature babies.
However, it is important to note that there are different types of kidney stones and the causes depend on the type of stone.
“Stones can form when there is a high content of certain crystal-forming substances in the urine. These crystals can form into stones within weeks or months”, highlights the United States National Library of Medicine service.
- Calcium Stones: These are most common and occur more frequently in men aged 20 to 30 years. Calcium can combine with other substances to form stones.
- Oxalate: “It is present in some foods like spinach. It is also found in vitamin C supplements. Diseases of the small intestine increase the risk of these stones forming, details Medline Plus.
The NIDDK, as part of its recommendations for treating kidney stones, suggests avoiding the following foods to reduce the amount of oxalate in the urine:
- Nuts and nut or dried fruit products,
- Peanuts (or peanuts), which are legumes and not nuts, and are high in oxalates.
- One type of fruit.
- wheat bran.
Another recommendation includes reducing sodium intake, as the likelihood of kidney stones increases when this mineral is consumed in excess.
“Sodium is a part of salt. Many canned and packaged foods and fast foods contain sodium. Many condiments, dressings, and meats also contain it,” says the NIDDK.
Consumption of animal protein also increases the risk of kidney stones. For this reason, Consulted Sources also recommends limiting consumption of the following sources of animal protein:
- Meat, chicken and pork, especially offal.
- Fish and shellfish.
- Milk, cheese and other dairy products.
Instead, the NIDDK presents some options for replacing animal protein in the diet. Beans, dried peas, and lentils are plant-based foods that are high in protein and low in oxalates.
It is important to note that the consumption of the above mentioned foods does not necessarily lead to a person getting kidney stones. In this sense, its consumption should certainly not be suspended.
The advice of a health professional is the key to organizing a balanced diet and not depriving the body of valuable nutrients due to kidney conditions prevention.