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What causes kidney stones? Five easy ways to protect against painful kidney stones


Kidney stones have a reputation for being excruciatingly painful in some cases. This painful condition will affect one in 11 people at some point in their lifetime. Luckily there are some really simple changes you can make to reduce your risk of developing kidney stones.

What are kidney stones?

Kidney stones are hard objects made up of excess minerals and salts from your kidneys. They can develop in just one kidney or in both.

You can have small kidney stones, which you probably won’t even notice, that can pass in your urine.

However, large kidney stones can be extremely painful.

Kidney stones are most common in adults aged over 30.

The ‘peak age’ for finding your first stone is 45, according to the British Association of Urological Surgeons.

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1 – Drink PLENTY of water

Every day, you should drink up to three litres of water.

Drinking lots of water is not only going to make you feel much more healthy and hydrated, but it makes you urinate more often.

Weeing more often means that you avoid getting a high concentration of chemicals which create kidney stones.

2 – Eat less salt

Eating too much salt can make it harder for your body to absorb calcium, meaning you have high levels of calcium in your urine.

The calcium in your urine can contribute to the development of kidney stones.

3 – Eat less meat

Meat contains high levels of acid and when your urine has high levels of acid it can put you at risk of developing kidney stones.

Meats to avoid include beef, poultry, fish and pork.

4 – Eat more calcium

Not eating enough calcium can put you at risk for developing kidney stones, along with other health problems like osteoporosis.

Eat more calcium-rich foods like low-fat dairy products.

5 – Stop drinking fizzy drinks

One study found people who drank one fizzy drink a day were 23 percent more likely to develop kidney stones.

Swap that can of pop for a glass of water, your kidneys will thank you!

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