Stone Prevention – Diet

General Dietary Recommendations

Obesity and being overweight increases the risk of stones, thus maintaining an ideal body weight and regular moderate exercise reduce the risk of stones

Drink enough water to obtain a urinary volume of about 2 Liters (a bit over 64 oz) per day, or enough fluids to keep your urine light yellow (if its clear, you're drinking too much). Click here to read a brochure on increasing your fluids.

Limit salt intake to about 2 grams per day thus try to use fresh and frozen food products, avoiding precooked and/or preserved foods which typically contain too much salt.

Avoid too much animal protein and increase the protein from vegetables.

Avoiding products rich in oxalate - the component of the most common type of stone -- Calcium Oxalate. See below.

Low Oxalate Diet

Patients with recurrent Calcium Oxalate stones should focus on consuming a low oxalate diet. The biggest culprit in the formation of these stones is not the calcium but the other chemical called oxalate. Oxalate is a naturally occurring chemical that is commonly found in a lot of vegetables and fruit that are typically thought to be "healthy". However, in patients who produce a lot of stones, these foods may be the reason they keep forming new stones.

We strongly recommend that patients avoid high oxalate containing foods. These include but are not limited to:

  • Dark green vegetables such as spinach, Rhubarb, Beets, Okra
  • Raspberries, Avocados, Dates, Grapefruit, Kiwi, Orange
  • Nuts, mainly almonds, walnuts, cashews and peanuts
  • Tea, Hot Chocolate, Carrot Juice
  • Some grains like bulgur, buckwheat, corn grits, rice bran, whole grain flour, cocoa powder, miso
Eat plenty of calcium-rich foods. Calcium binds to oxalate so that it isn’t absorbed into your blood and cannot reach your kidneys.

Below are various brochures that have more detailed lists of specific products with low, moderate or high oxalate content.

Read our page regarding some of the supplements and medications that reduce the risk of stones.