I have been helping patients understand how to prevent kidney stones for a long time. It never gets boring because each person comes with their own set of unique lifestyle challenges and changing habits is rarely easy.
A concern I often address (several times a day) is the need to give up those favorite foods. If you watch our YouTube show, you know I take a no-nonsense approach to diet and lifestyle. But does that mean giving up all your yummy delights?!
I assure you, you can still have your favorite foods. Life is long, and we must eat cake and takeout pizzas. Are we really only going to eat cauliflower crust for the rest of our lives? I think not!
The only two items I ask you to refrain from are spinach and almond products. Why not almonds, you ask? Because, in my experience, it’s hard to open a bag of almonds and only eat a few. Almonds are extremely easy to overeat—almond snacks, almond milk, almond flour, almond, almond, almond!
Lower oxalate comes down to portion, so if you want two almonds, go for it. I think it’s easier to take them away.
As I always say—Portion Not Perfection.
Nobody makes a stone by eating one spinach salad or a few almonds a day. It’s what we eat over time and in what quantities we eat it that matters.
The other big contributing factor to high oxalate levels is calcium. Make sure you are getting your calcium goals covered each day. It’s essential.
As for sugar and sodium—you have those cookies, but only have a couple and not a whole row.
It’s as simple and as challenging as that.
Life is full of treats. Enjoy them.
The only thing you need to do after enjoying your favorite snack or out-to-eat meal is get right back to work. Don’t get angry or frustrated with “falling off the wagon”. Don’t give up. Simply return to your regularly scheduled program of healthy eating with your next meal choice. Easy.
Diet culture has demonized hot dogs and crinkle fries (I know!). I love hot dogs and crinkle fries and will have them if I want them. Enjoy your food. Move on. That’s it.
Be flexible with your lifestyle, and it will be easier to maintain. Eating perfectly every day is boring. Untrain your mind and stop feeling guilt and shame over a treat. Just get back to work with your next meal.
You got this!
Your friend and advocate,
Simple, satisfying smoothies for kidney stone formers
We should be having 2 cups of fruit and 3 cups of veggies each day and smoothies are a great way to help hit those goals.