5+ ways to prevent painful kidney stones

Kidney stones are a serious matter. And if you don’t believe me, consider this…

A kidney stone can get as big as a golf ball, while also staying sharp and crystal-shaped. Just imagine passing some of that through your urinary tract. Yikes!

But besides the fact that they inflict excruciating pain, kidney stones are problematic for another reason — they’re a sign that something’s not right with your health.

At the very least, a case of kidney stones means you’re severely dehydrated, since kidney stones often form when there’s not enough water to dilute the uric acid in your urine.

Of course, there’s also the possibility that your kidney stones are a side effect of a more serious health issue. Several chronic health problems increase your risk of developing kidney stones, including:

  • Crohn’s disease
  • Chronic urinary tract infections
  • Renal tubular acidosis
  • Hyperparathyroidism
  • Medullary sponge kidney
  • Dent’s disease
  • Cystinuria

Other risk factors for kidney stones include family history, an unhealthy diet and obesity.

Peak Golden Oil

Helps Your Body Maintain Optimum Immune Balance!


But no matter what the cause of your kidney stones, you’re probably searching for a long-term solution that will guarantee you won’t have to pass another one of these painful little buggers again.

And if that’s the case, I have good news…

Science keeps uncovering more and more solutions to prevent the gut-wrenching pain felt by kidney stone sufferers everywhere.

A new supplement for kidney stones?

The latest up-and-coming kidney stone remedy is alpha lipoic acid. You may have seen this popular antioxidant on the shelves of your local health food store.

People often use it to help with diabetes-related nerve damage, prevent cell damage and boost heart health. But recently, researchers from the Buck Institute and the University of California-San Francisco found that alpha lipoic acid may be able to help with kidney stones too.

More specifically, these researchers found that alpha lipoic acid helps prevent kidney stones in mice with the rodent version of a disease called cystinuria. Cystinuria is a genetic disease that causes the chronic formation of stones in the kidney, ureter and bladder.

People with this disease often have to undergo surgery after surgery to remove dangerous stones that can block their urinary tract and lead to serious infections. But in mice suffering from the disease, alpha lipoic acid helped these stones dissolve, preventing a lot of pain and dangerous complications.

But before you get too excited, there is one caveat for kidney stone-sufferers without cystinuria…

The stones produced in cystinuria are primarily composed of the amino acid cystine, while other kidney stones are composed of uric acid or calcium. Alpha lipoic acid was effective at dissolving cystine stones, but researchers don’t know whether it will help dissolve other types of kidney stones too. Their next step is to do more research to find out.

Reducing risks for kidney stones

If the threat of painful kidney stones hanging over your head, you don’t have time to wait. Alpha lipoic acid’s antioxidant benefits can do your health some good regardless, so it couldn’t hurt to see if it will help your kidney stones too. But there are a few other simple guidelines you can follow as well to help keep yourself kidney stone-free:

  1. Pay close attention to what you drink. Hydration is the key to preventing kidney stones. Avoid iced tea (unless it’s green), because it’s linked to an increased risk of kidney stones. And drink 8 to 10 glasses of water daily. You may also want to add some lemon to your water. Lemon contains citrate, a natural inhibitor of kidney stones.
  2. Avoid acid reflux and ulcer medications. A 2016 study linked drugs used to decrease acid production, like proton pump inhibitors (PPIs) and histamine receptor-2 (H2) blockers, to an increased risk of kidney stones. Not surprising since they’ve also been linked to stroke risk.
  3. Mind your vitamin D, vitamin C and zinc levels. You’re probably always hearing that you should be getting more vitamin D. But in the case of kidney stones you may be getting too much. Studies have linked excess vitamin D to an increased risk of kidney stones. And the same goes for vitamin C and zinc too. So if you have a tendency toward developing stones, don’t go above the daily recommend levels of these vitamins.
  4. Get your calcium from your diet, not supplements. Calcium supplements may increase your risk of kidney stones, so eat your fair share of calcium-rich foods like grass-fed dairy, kale, sardines and broccoli instead of popping a calcium pill. Calcium supplementation also carries heart risks.
  5. Eat a healthy diet. The best anti-kidney stone diet is full of fresh fruit and vegetables and free from processed foods filled with sodium and refined sugar. High-quality meat and dairy products are okay too. Just don’t overdo the animal products… they’re high in phosphorus, which has also been linked to kidney stones.

These five guidelines are a good starting point for natural kidney stone prevention, but if you’re looking for a few more natural ways to prevent and treat kidney stones, check out Dr. Michael Cutler’s advice on kidney stones and kidney health.

Editor’s note: Have you heard of EDTA chelation therapy? It was developed originally to remove lead and other contaminants, including heavy metals, from the body. Its uses now run the gamut from varicose veins to circulation. Click here to discover Chelation: Natural Miracle for Protecting Your Heart and Enhancing Your Health!

  1. “Kidney Stones: Causes, Symptoms, and Treatments.” Medical News Today. http://www.medicalnewstoday.com. Retrieved February 8, 2017.
  2. “Kidney Stones.” Mayo Clinic. http://www.mayoclinic.org. Retrieved February 8, 2017.
  3. “Alpha-lipoic Acid.” University of Maryland Medical Center. http://umm.edu. Retrieved February 8, 2017.
  4. “Alpha-lipoic acid prevents kidney stones in mouse model of rare genetic disease.” MedicalXpress. https://medicalxpress.com. Retrieved February 8, 2017.
  5. Zee, et al. “a-Lipoic acid treatment prevents cystine urolithiasis in a mouse model of cystinuria.” Nature Medicine, 2017.
  6. “Lemonade can help prevent kidney stones.” MedicalXpress. https://medicalxpress.com. Retrieved February 8, 2017.
  7. “Reflux and ulcer medications linked to kidney stones and chronic kidney disease.” MedicalXpress. https://medicalxpress.com. Retrieved February 8, 2017.
  8. “Long-term calcium and vitamin D supplement use may be linked to increased risk of kidney stones.” MedicalXpress. https://medicalxpress.com. Retrieved February 8, 2017.
  9. “Zinc in the body may contribute to kidney stones.” MedicalXpress. https://medicalxpress.com. Retrieved February 8, 2017.
  10. “Calcium supplements tied to kidney stone risk in study.” MedicalXpress. https://medicalxpress.com. Retrieved February 8, 2017.
Jenny Smiechowski

By Jenny Smiechowski

Jenny Smiechowski is a Chicago-based freelance writer who specializes in health, nutrition and the environment. Her work has appeared in online and print publications like Chicagoland Gardening magazine, Organic Lifestyle Magazine, BetterLife Magazine, TheFix.com, Hybridcars.com and Seedstock.com.