How can Kidney Stones (Nephrolithiasis) be Prevented?
Adequate fluid intake (>2 Litres/day)
Decrease salt intake to less than 2300 mg/day
Minimize Oxalate intake (for patients with calcium Oxalate stones)
Minimize animal protein intake (reducing animal protein intake has shown to reduce kidney stone risk in only men)
Increase fruit and vegetable consumption (increase in potassium has been shown to reduce stone formation especially in older men and women)
Why not reduce calcium intake? It can adversely affect bone density, especially in patients at risk of osteoporosis including women and the elderly. Reducing calcium intake can also increase the stone risk by increasing the calcium Oxalate content.
Taylor EN, Curhan GC. Diet and fluid prescription in stone disease. Kidney Int 2006; 70:835.
Curhan GC, Willett WC, Rimm EB, Stampfer MJ. A prospective study of dietary calcium and other nutrients and the risk of symptomatic kidney stones. N Engl J Med 1993; 328:833.
Meschi T, Maggiore U, Fiaccadori E, et al. The effect of fruits and vegetables on urinary stone risk factors. Kidney Int 2004; 66:2402.