Summer Time and Kidney Stones

July 29, 2021

It’s that time of year again: Summer. And it’s hot! Temperatures will climb into the 100s with the summer heat blasting us for a few long months. This is peak kidney stone prevention time.

It is estimated that about one in ten people will have a kidney stone at some time in their lives. The risk of kidney stones for men is 11% and 9% for women. Other diseases such as high blood pressure, diabetes, and obesity may increase the risk for kidney stones.

Urine contains minerals and salts. When the urine is concentrated with these minerals and salts it can cause hard stones to form in the kidneys (kidney stones). Once the kidney stone begins to move into the ureter towards the bladder, that kidney stone is called a ureteral stone and is trying to make its way down the urinary tract to pass. Not all do. And those that do often cause a painful journey with intense pain, nausea, vomiting and other symptoms that may land you in the ER.

There is no dietary fix to “get rid of” kidney or ureteral stones that have already formed. However, there are some dietary tips to keep in mind to help prevent stones: 

-Drink 3 liters of water a day
-Reduce salt in your diet
-Eat five to nine servings of fruits and vegetables a day
-Eat less animal protein
-Get the recommended amount of calcium in your diet a day
-Reduce the amount of oxalates you consume in your diet. Although leafy greens are healthy, they pack a punch with oxalate which put you at higher risk for stones. Moderate these foods and, if consumed, do so with some calcium
-Add a little citrate. Lemon juice concentrate (4 oz per day) mixed with water is a good way to get citrate in your diet.
-Keep the weight off. Obesity puts you at greater risk for kidney stones.

A nutritionist can also help direct your diet and fluid intake to help prevent stones.

If you have had kidney stones, are concerned you may have one or just want more information contact Austin Urology Institute for a consultation with a provider and our nutritionist by calling 512.694.8888.