Calcium oxalate stones are a common ailment that afflicts the kidneys, urinary tract, and surrounding areas. There are several kidney stone types but calcium oxalate is the most prevalent variety. If you’re wondering about the best calcium oxalate prevention and treatment methods, it’s worthwhile to explore some of the latest kidney stone research on prevention and treatment.
The Latest Research on Kidney Stones
Research into calcium oxalate and other types of kidney stones is important for finding effective treatments and preventive strategies. Unfortunately, kidney stones are becoming more prevalent in many countries around the world. This may be due to various genetic and lifestyle factors. Researchers are interested in identifying risk factors for kidney stones as well as finding the right treatments.
Risk Factors For Kidney Stones
Although people can develop kidney stones for no apparent reason, medical research has identified quite a few risk factors, including the following.
- Use of opioids, either prescription or illegal.
- Alcohol consumption.
- Family history of kidney disease.
- Diet —Eating a high oxalate, protein, or diet high in sodium increases the risk.
Except for family history, many risk factors are based on diet and lifestyle choices. We will look at some recent kidney stone clinical trials and other research on some of these factors
Dietary Factors in Kidney Stones
The best calcium oxalate research of recent years has discovered quite a few dietary principles relevant to kidney stones.
- Limit oxalate rich foods. Many common foods, including peanuts, spinach, rhubarb, Swiss chard, sweet potatoes and beets are high oxalate. Research the oxalate content of foods in your diet so you can make the necessary adjustments.
- Don’t avoid calcium. People sometimes think that calcium causes calcium oxalate stones, but this isn’t the case. In fact, calcium helps to balance the potential damage caused by oxalate rich foods. When consuming calcium it is best to be consumed along with the oxalate foods so the calcium and oxalate can combine in the stomach and intestines before passing to the kidney.
- Limit protein. You need a certain amount of protein in your diet, but research indicates that too much protein can contribute to the formation of stones. Animal protein, in particular, should be limited. Supplements such as whey protein, collagen or soy protein are not recommended if you have or are prone to kidney stones. A certain amount of milk, yogurt and cheese can be beneficial to get your daily intake of protein as well as calcium.
- Don’t overeat. One study found that consuming more than 2200 calories per day can increase the risk for kidney stones by over 40%. Of course, the number of calories you need depends on your frame, metabolism and how active you are. As a guideline, however, eating less may help you prevent kidney stones.
Kidney Stones and Hydration
One of the best ways to prevent calcium oxalate kidney stones is to drink enough water. The exact amount you need varies depending on the weather and your activity level. The average adult should consume at least six 8 ounce glasses of water spread throughout the day on a daily basis.
Studies show that lemon is beneficial for kidney stones. Lemons are a good source of citrates, which help dissolve and prevent kidney stones form forming. Squeezing fresh lemon into water and consuming helps you stay hydrated and provides additional kidney stone protection. Low sugar or sugar-free lemonade is another option. Energy drinks, alcohol, and coffee should be limited as alcohol and caffeine can have a dehydrating effect.
Research on Kidney Stones and Exercise
Getting regular exercise is a good way to maintain good health and prevent many health problems. One study found that getting even small amounts of exercise regularly can reduce your risk of kidney stones by 31%. People who already have kidney stones can still exercise unless their condition is severe enough to require immediate medical intervention such as surgery. Moderate cardio, yoga, and walking are among the exercises that can help manage kidney stones.
Keep Up With the Latest Research on Kidney Stones
As more research is conducted, medical experts are learning more about the kidneys and disorders such as calcium oxalate stones. In addition to the above guidelines, it’s good to keep up with the latest medical research. You may learn of new medications, remedies, and procedures to help you prevent kidney stones.