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The kidney stone diet: Not as restrictive as you may think

Updated: November 01, 2019

Reducing but not eliminating oxalate, salt, and animal protein in your diet can help keep kidney stones from recurring.

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When you get a kidney stone, a change in diet is in order. You'll need to avoid foods that are high in certain substances — such as oxalate — that can lead to the formation of more kidney stones. But watch out for exhaustive lists of foods to avoid, warns Dr. Brian Eisner, co-director of the Kidney Stone Program at Harvard-affiliated Massachusetts General Hospital. "There is a lot of misinformation on the Internet regarding the relationship between the consumption of certain foods and risk of developing kidney stones."

Types of kidney stones

Stones develop in the kidneys when high concentrations of chemicals form tiny crystals in urine and then start sticking together to form a growing stone. The vast majority of kidney stones are made of one or more of the following:

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