How do I protect my kidneys on a keto diet?

In this article, we are going to discuss and answer the question “How do I protect my kidneys on a keto diet?”. I will include some recommendations to help reduce the risk of kidney stones, and the food that should be limited as well.

How do I protect my kidneys on a keto diet?

The keto diet has many side effects on health, especially kidney health. Keto diets lead to the development of kidney stones. Kidney stones occur for different reasons. One of them is high uric acid which is related to the excess consumption of high purine food. 

These foods include animal meat. This happens due to the fact that uric acid causes crystal formation. These crystals are hard to excrete with urine, and thus the development of kidney stones occurs. 

Uric acid stones occur in diets that are low in fruits and vegetables, while high in animal protein. This applies to the keto diet

Another type of kidney stone is formed from excess calcium and salt in your diet. The keto diet does not put an upper limit on calcium or salt, so they are consumed freely. Excess calcium consumption is not the only reason calcium stones develop, sodium is the culprit. 

The excess amounts of sodium in the kidneys forces the kidneys to excrete the excess. By doing that, your kidneys do not excrete the excess calcium out of your body. This leads to the formation of calcium oxalate stones.

Kidney stones are painful, and since the tubes that excrete the urine are narrow, they block the flow of urine. The pain is sharp and causes a painful burn while urinating. 

You might feel like you need to urinate frequently and notice some blood in the urine. It is an uncomfortable situation that is prevalent in many people. 

To protect your kidneys from kidney stones, you will have to make some changes to your diet.

Drink more water

Drinking enough water is essential to your diet. It flushes out toxins and would be more likely able to flush out toxins. Some kidney stones are too small and can be excreted with urine. 

In addition to that, drinking almost 3 liters of water per day would help reduce the risk of crystal formation in the kidneys in the first place, which leads to the development of kidney stones. It lowers the risk of nee stones formation. 

Water is also not a contradiction to the keto diet. You can drink it frequently to protect your kidneys. 

It is better as a fluid choice to stay away from sweetened drinks or sugary beverages. They contain lots of sugar which put your body out of ketosis, and they have caffeine in them. 

Caffeine increases the excretion of water in the body, and it does not count as water. It does not hydrate.

Reduce the amount of salt you have in your diet

Another tip is to reduce how much salt you include in your diet. As I explained before, excess salt will make kidneys work harder to excrete it from the body, which will cause an accumulation of calcium and the development of calcium oxalate stones.

 It is recommended to stick to your salt limit of 2300 milligrams per day. Limit or eat in moderation foods that are high in sodium. Some of these foods include cheeses, canned products from soup to meat, pickles, and condiments.

Do not exceed your calcium recommendations

Calcium should be consumed from food rich in calcium, such as dairy products and milk. Taking supplements that contain calcium in high amounts would increase your risk of calcium oxalate stones development. 

That is why it is important to have calcium from your food, not from supplements. This way you will not exceed your daily recommendations of calcium. 

Eat less meat to reduce uric acid

Eating less meat would be helpful to reduce the uric acid levels that will lead to the formation of kidney stones.

Eat less food with oxalate 

Some food contains oxalate which would reduce the risk of oxalate stones. Some of this food are almonds, spinach, and rhubarb.

Conclusion 

In this article, we discussed and answered the question “How do I protect my kidneys on a keto diet?”.I included some recommendations to help reduce the risk of kidney stones and the food that should be limited as well.

References 

Kidney Stones: Symptoms, Diagnosis & Treatment – Urology Care Foundation (urologyhealth.org)

How Do I Protect My Kidneys On A Keto Diet? (Correct answer) – Fitness and diets – the best recommendations (personalhealthimaging.com)

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