Does wine cause kidney stones? This is a common question asked, and there are a lot of misconceptions out there about it. Kidney stones are hard clumps of waste material that come from the chemicals found in urine. Kidney stones can be excruciating and problematic over time, especially if they are larger or you do not get medical attention from them. So does wine causes kidney stones? Can you prevent them? Here’s what you need to know.
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Does Wine Cause Kidney Stones at Any Level?
There is not enough evidence to say that wine specifically causes kidney stones to occur. More so, there is little evidence that alcohol itself can cause kidney stones to occur. However, consistent and high levels of wine or other alcohol consumption can cause damage to the kidneys, including the risk that the kidneys will not operate the way they should.
Can alcohol cause kidney stones at all?
One of the ways that alcohol could be linked to kidney stones is dehydration. When urine is concentrated, the body is dehydrated. When this happens, the kidneys do not operate properly, and over time, this can cause kidney stones to occur. Dehydration itself is a leading cause of kidney stones. If you do not drink enough water, then the kidneys cannot act effectively to flush the body of the waste products.
So, in short, alcohol itself does not cause kidney stones, but it can cause dehydration at a significant level, especially if you are drinking alcohol on a constant basis. That can mean that you are at a higher risk of having kidney stones if you are consistently dehydrated.
Other causes of kidney stones include:
- High protein diets
- Being overweight or obese
- Polycystic kidney disease
- Having had gastric bypass
- Conditions that cause high levels of cystine, uric acid, oxalate, or calcium in the urine
- Some medications, including diuretics use or calcium-based antacids use
How to Prevent Kidney Stones
In some situations, it may be able to work to prevent kidney stones from occurring. If you know what the cause of kidney stones is in your situation, work to improve that. For example, as discussed above, the most common reason for kidney stones is that a person is dehydrated. That could be the result of drinking too much alcohol, which naturally dehydrates the body, or simply not drinking enough water to meet the needs of the kidneys on an ongoing basis.
Other times, you may wish to work with your doctor to determine the underlying cause of your kidney stones. This could require getting bloodwork done to have a careful look at your blood labs as well as your urine composition.
There may be other ways to reduce kidney risks as well, such as avoiding eating as much animal protein and lowering your intake of oxalate-rich foods. Some people may also want to increase their nutrient intake to help support the needs of the kidneys. Most importantly, reduce the amount of sodium in your diet as that can cause dehydration and kidney damage as well.
Make a Conscious Effort to Focus on Addiction Treatment
If you have an alcohol use disorder, you may have kidney stones as a result of it. If that happens to you often and you know it is because of your alcohol intake, take steps now to treat it. Reach out to our admissions counselors to discuss getting help at (866) 971-5531.