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Prevent kidney stones: Preventing kidney stones through a healthy diet

10/26/2009 - Articles

Prevent kidney stones: Preventing kidney stones through a healthy diet

By: Susan Aldridge, medical journalist, PhD

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Prevent kidney stones

Kidney Stones, how to prevent kidney stones through a health diet? Kidney stones are from through accumulation of salts in the urinary system. Having a kidney stone can be extremely painful but new research now suggests that a healthy diet can help avoid developing one.

Kidney Stones, how to prevent kidney stones through a health diet? Kidney stones are from through accumulation of salts in the urinary system. Having a kidney stone can be extremely painful but new research now suggests that a healthy diet can help avoid developing one.

In fact, There are dietary changes that you can make to ensure that your chances of getting the stones are minimized and following these guidelines can make all the difference.
However, changing your diet to prevent kidney stones can be a little difficult. But, after a short period of time you will realize it is like second nature. The main change to your diet to prevent kidney stones is going to be simple. You have to increase the consumption of water. What is the perfect diet to prevent kidney stones?

The dietary approaches to hypertension (DASH) diet has previously been investigated for preventing high blood pressure, diabetes, and heart disease but not, till now, for kidney stones.  However, a team at Maine Medical Center has looked at the impact of DASH on kidney stones, using data from three well known clinical studies.  The Health Professionals Follow-up Study, the Nurses’ Health Study I and the Nurses’ Health Study II have run for many years and look at the impact of factors such as diet on chronic health conditions. 

Kidney stones have previously been linked to higher rates of high blood pressure, obesity, diabetes and other heart disease risk factors.  So there was already speculation that the DASH diet could, perhaps, also prevent kidney stones.  In the study, participants were given a score linked to the main components of the DASH diet: fruit, vegetables, nuts and legumes, low fat dairy, whole grains, and lower intakes of salt, sweetened drinks, red meat and processed meat, like bacon and sausages.  The study participants were followed up for several years, during which time there were 5,646 cases of kidney stones.

Those with the highest DASH scores were around 40% less likely to develop a kidney stone compared to those with the lowest scores.  Kidney stones can be extremely painful and the medications used to treat them are far from ideal.  This study suggests an alternative approach – prevention with a healthy DASH style diet. And there are other good reasons for adopting a diet based on fresh produce, low fat dairy and whole grains – namely, prevention of heart disease.  The study is interesting also because it highlights the link between kidney stones and other health conditions – with the DASH diet, you may be able to reduce your risk of any of these, is the take home message.  

Source

Taylor E, Fung T and Curhan G DASH-style diet associates with reduced risk of kidney stones Journal of the American Association of Nephrology online August 13 2009; doi:10.1681/ASN.2009030276

Related Articles:

How to eat if you have kidney stones
Diet Can Cut the Recurrence of Kidney Stones
Diet is a factor in kidney stones

Created on: 08/24/2009
Reviewed on: 10/26/2009

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