Often known as silent diseases, kidney ailments can pose several health risks and lead to poor quality of life. Kidney stones are made up of chemicals such as cystine, calcium, oxalate and phosphate present in the urine. 

In conversation with HT, Dr. Shruti Tapiawala, a consultant nephrologist at Mumbai’s Global Hospital, revealed the most common cause of kidney stones.

“The incidence of kidney stones is increasing worldwide and kidney stones are known to damage the kidney. The commonest cause of stone formation is drinking less water. Drinking less water allows precipitation of minerals and substances in kidney tubules and due to less flow of urine, form stones. Some other contributing factors are obesity, laxative abuse, certain supplements and medications, and intestinal disorders,” Tapiawala told HT.

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Here are 5 lifestyle changes to incorporate into your daily life to prevent kidney stones.

Drink up

Consuming a sufficient amount of liquids such as water (2-3 litres) and organic juices can help in diluting the urine, thus lowering the risk of the formation of kidney stones. However, one should avoid consuming fizzy and alcoholic beverages.

Less salt

Consuming a diet low in salt can help prevent the buildup of crystals that lead to stones. It is also necessary to avoid eating processed food items.

Regular check-ups

Getting regular check-ups and paying visits to the doctor every once in a while is crucial to determine health issues in the body. An early diagnosis of kidney stones is easily treatable. For those with a history of kidney stones, getting a medical check-up is essential to stop a stone from reoccurring. 

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Be wary of these veggies

One must extract the seeds before consuming vegetables such as okra, guava and tomatoes. Avoiding fruits and vegetables with seeds can help prevent kidney stones.

Don’t fall for quick fixes

“Avoid false promises of having stone dissolved naturally as that cannot happen. Removal/lithotripsy of obstructing stones and prevention of further stone formation is the only solution if someone forms recurrent stones,” Tapiawala told HT.