I know there have been a few questions about kidney stones here on the message board, but I haven't found any sources listed other than people's answers.
I just completed my Whole30 with my husband and had great success. My sister & her husband decided they were ready to get healthy and wanted to start paleo (YAY!!) after hearing all of the benefits that our family and others have experienced from eating this way.
They started with the Whole30 and ~1 week in my sister gets kidney stones. She goes to the doctor and they tell her it's from a "high animal protein diet". The Doc told her it can also happen from an increase oxylate in diet which can be caused by animal proteins, veggies, berries, nuts and seeds. WTF.
I feel so bad for her and she's feeling quite discouraged as her body appears to be rebelling from her wanting to eat healthy.
So finally the question - do you guys have any recommendations/sources I can pass along to her to help make the transiton easier? Surely there is a way for her to make this transition without having to endure the pain of stones...
Thanks for your insight and time. :) Happy Friday!
Well, without knowing what she was eating it is hard to say. And knowing that it's only 1 week in (kidney stones usually take months to form), would tell me that
The doc is under the impression she's been eating this way much longer.
The doc subscribes more towards Ornish/Oz ways of eating and feels that a diet centered on meat is inherently bad, and is using this malady as a way to convince your sister to stay away.
Needless to say, I've never seen real evidence that protein can cause kidney stones - what I have seen is a previous history with lots of soda (sodium+ caffeine), tea (caffeine), and dairy (increased calcium), when met with chronic dehydration (not drinking enough plain water along with the above beverages) can cause kidney stones.
That being said, I would say protein makes up 20% of my diet, and compared to most "fit" persons that I know, that's pretty low.
Many make the mistake of doing Paleo - while still subscribing to the low-fat mantras, so they eat lots of protein without any fat... chicken breasts, tuna, etc... If there was an existing issue with kidney stones (which usually take considerably longer than 1 week to form) then perhaps the extra strain of a high protein diet, or just the fact that her diet is cleaning up and her body is "flushing" toxins during the initial phase, then that would make sense.
But kidney stones after one week of eating high protein? I won't say it's impossible, but it is highly unlikely.
Get her drinking more water, and not drinking any major quantities of caffeinated beverages like iced tea (a cup or two of coffee is fine and won't dehydrate that bad, as long as she drinks plenty of water).
So this isn't really from indepth medical knowledge but personal experience and research......I have had several episodes of kidney stones.... several while eating SAD and 2 while paleo (though they often take years to form so they may have formed pre-paleo for me). There are a variety of reasons why someone gets a kidney stone and unless she passed it, caught the stone in a strainer and had it analyzed there is no way to really know that it was from increased oxylate in her diet. That sounds like a hypothesis more than anything.
There are four kinds of stones (calcium, uric acid,struvite, and cystine) and they all come from different substances being high in the urine. You wouldn't be able to tell which one it was unless it was analyzed. I had all of my stones broken up or surgically removed so they were not analyzed and I was told there was no way to know what caused them. Ironically, I am doing a 24 hour urine collection today to try and determine what is running high in my urine as I have another stone now.
Hypothyroidism, gout, certain medications, being chronically dehydrated, pregnancy, gastric bypass surgery, hereditary reasons, excess sugar consumption, even a UTI... there are TONS of reasons they can form. Hypercalciuria (high calcium in the urine) is the most common cause and is typically hereditary. This basically means that too much calcium from food is absorbed and excreted in urine. Usually you are just born with this predisposition.
Lastly, while it may be possible to have a kidney stone form in a week, from what I have read that is HIGHLY unlikely. Stones start small and gradually grow over time. They take months or years to get big and can hang out in the kidney and be asymptomatic for long periods of time before they move into the ureter (the point where they cause pain). It is most likely that your sister had this stone for some time but it was in the kidney not causing pain so it was never found. I have a large stone in my kidney now but I feel no pain at all from it.... if I hadn't passed another one recently and had at CT, I would have never known. My urologist said that it could become painful in an hour or in five years... there is no real understanding of when stones pass.
So, basically, I think it is pretty unlikely this stone came from one week of Whole 30 eating. Sometimes if you have a stone already and you increase fluid intake it can move the stone more quickly into the ureter/bladder so it is possible she sped up the process of passing an existing stone. Most likely it just happened to come at a sort of coincidental time. If I were her, I would continue on with Whole 30 and ask her urologist to perform a 24 hour urine collection to see if anything is high in her urine. That will give you much better answer than the "a few days of increased animal fat" hypothesis. After all, if that were the case, everyone eating a high animal fat diet/ketosis would be having them left and right and vegans would never get them and that is most definitely not the case!
The number one reason in my paleo patients is Magnesium deficiency. It needs to be assessed with an intracellular test like an exatest and not a serum Mg level.
Kidney stones are a possible side effect of long term use of a ketogenic diet. 1 week is not long term, so her kidney stones were probably in development already. Read wiki on ketogenic diet and have her get enough carbs to avoid ketosis for now.
There are different types of kidney stones that apparently have different causes. For example, calcium stones seemed to be linked to foods high in oxalate, where as uric acid stones are linked to high protein diets See here: http://www.mayoclinic.com/health/kidney-stones/ds00282/dsection=causes
In addition, most of what I've read suggests that no matter what you eat, a principle underlying cause is usually chronic dehydration. In other words, drink lots of water and you shouldn't have a problem.
Finally, I'm not a doctor, but I'm pretty sure it takes a lot longer than a week to form a kidney stone.
This study, which examined soldiers deploying to Kuwait, found a mean time of 93 days to form a stone in a hot desert environment. http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/15711293
Sounds like it was just a coincidence that the dietary switch coincided with the kidney stone.
My girlfriend passed stones when she initially went gluten free.Was a one time thing,never happened again.She thinks her body was house cleaning.I never had the problem,but I can see where it would be possible.
I was just reading some stuff about vitamine D, and found some stuff about kidney stones. Vitamine D seems to raise the chance of giving you kidney stones by 17%. Also eating too acidic (too much meat/grains and too little vegetables/fruit) will increase the chance: http://www.vitamindcouncil.org/news-archive/2006/vitamin-d-and-kidney-stones/ So eating the normal diet will have caused it more probably then the paleo diet.
Vitamine K2 might help to prevent it: http://www.preparemd.com/supplements-vitamins-categories-information/vitamin-k2-mk7-reduced-heart-attack/
And make sure you don't overdo in one of the vitamins, imbalancing like overdoing in vitamin D and not enough vitamin A can also cause things like kidney stones: http://vitamindwiki.com/tiki-index.php?page=Masterjohn%20on%20Tufts%20and%20vitamin%20A%20D%20and%20K%20%20April%202009
Another theory is eating foods too high in oxalates can cause some people to have kidney stones. Foods like sweet or regular potatoes have very high levels of oxalates. Many people get immediate relief when changing their diets to Low Oxalates Diet (LOD).
Mine occurred when I was eating a vegetarian/vegan diet, and since going Paleo for almost a year, I haven't had any issues with my kidneys, including any UTIs which used to plague me for years. My diet is actually high in oxalates, but from my research, oxalates are produced by our bodies and only 10-15% accumulates because of our dietary intake. Kidney stones cannot be developed in a matter of a week. I know someone who has had one in her kidney for many years (she has biannual ultrasounds to moniter it). They don't give off pain or discomfort until they move/pass. I definitely would credit whatever the diet was before her switch to Paleo.
I've been paleo for at least three years. It isn't the paleo diet. People do tend to carry much less water around- indeed a lot of SAD people look like they have edema- so perhaps the switch simply made her condition manifest itself, but that's the extent of it.
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