Many of you will leave your doctor’s office with questions about foods and kidney stone prevention. You will go home. You will sit down at your desk and the Googling will begin. Here is a spot for you to ask me anything you like about this topic. We already have things on this site about salt, oxalate, and calcium but this space is for specific issues for anyone who comes.

139 Responses to “FOODS”

  1. Lizzie Martinez

    Question. I am a nurse just diagnosed with kidney stone. I am type 2 DM, was not eating well or drinking water well, drinking a lot of caffeine coffee and tea, and diet ice tea. Diagnosed with a kidney stone. As a nurse, I reach out to many professionals in health care. One of the oncologists I work with looks at nutrition studies and practices vegan. He listens to which is a physician who looks at all nutrition research and summarizes and for kidney stone prevention the two common themes is decreasing animal proteins and salt. ER doctor told me to stop drinking caffeine-coffee, tea and add lemon to my water as it helps to prevent kidney stones. Thirdly, I was just diagnosed with erosions in my stomach (would get upper abdomen distention, sudden nausea, and belching and epigastric tenderness, not burning-placed on protonix) had an overactive bladder and spasms and was told acid again a culprit and can coincide with acid reflex (put on uribel that improved QOL) and now two weeks later a kidney stone. Not sure if all interrelated. Thank you for any information. Trying to read and learn can be very confusing and I have cleaned up my diet. See urologist for first time tomorrow.

  2. Lucy Gertner

    If one develops kidney stones only in one kidney and none in the other, does this imply the stones are not caused by one’s diet?

    • Fredric Coe, MD

      Hi Lucy, No. Stones form by chance given risk – like car theft if you park in the wrong neighborhoods. So, prevention is the same. Regards, Fred Coe

  3. CiCi

    Hi all, I’ve been dealing with awful kidney stones and mostly live in a developing country where I can’t access good medical care or do any modern testing.
    I do know, however, that my diet has been EXCEEDINGLY high in oxalates as most of those “chief offender” foods were my staple foods. I am reducing oxalates because I have had a lot of other awful symptoms which may be related as well. It’s also hot here so I’m sweating out my fluids/electrolytes as quickly as I replenish them, and I am dairy intolerant so I probably haven’t been getting enough calcium. I am also allergic to fish/shellfish and gluten intolerant (possibly celiac but we’ll never know; I can’t tolerate gluten long enough to find out), and have had low Vitamin D levels due to this (I assume).
    I’m wondering if supplements could balance me back out nutrition wise and prevent stones with sufficient electrolytes??
    I’ve also seen this enzyme which claims to break down oxalate and seems to have been very recently developed, and am wondering if you all have tried it or if you have any thoughts about whether it actually works and is safe. There was a study done (here: ) but I’m still wondering why it’s not recommended for pregnant women or children if it’s considered perfectly safe. And it is actually effective? It would be wonderful if it were! Thanks for any thoughts. I’ll be back in civilization for a visit soon, but as an overseas volunteer, I’ll want to first think really hard about spending any money on something which may or may not work.

    • jharris

      Hi CiCi,
      It’s wonderful you are that you are volunteering your time overseas! The climate along with the dietary issues you describe are more than likely causing your stones. The first line of defense is to keep your fluids up, even more so since you are losing fluid in sweat. Use the oxalate list we give on this website and continue to lower the highest oxalate foods. Please try your best to seek out foods that have calcium in them and you can “Google” nondairy sources of calcium and see what you can do to get enough into your diet. We do indeed know about the enzyme you speak about. We can not endorse it at this time as it has only been tested in a “simulated gastric environment”. One still needs to follow a low oxalate diet when taking these. If there are further developments in the product we will inform you.
      Be well,

    • Fredric Coe, MD

      Hi CiCi, As my colleague mentioned oxalate treatments are all in testing phase and not actual drugs one can use. More important, you seem to be an active stone former and chose to live in a world sans testing and advanced medical care. Perhaps you could have proper testing when you come back for a break and establish what is really wrong with you. As for long term management and prevention under the conditions you mention, possibly a proper knowledge of cause will help. Right now, everything is vague and therefore unlikely to work. Your link is to a toxicity study in rats – very distant from patient care. Regards, Fred Coe


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