Study: High Protein Diet Increase Risk of Kidney Stone Disease


high-protein diet cause kidney stoneOne of today’s popular diets, which is the high-protein diet or eating more amount of protein intake than other nutrients, is believed to be able to help shape the body and muscles. But a recent study says that this diet would potentially harm your health.

The researchers believe that this type of diet increases the  long-term risk to suffer this disease, one of the risk is to suffer kidney stone disease. Why is that?

As reported by the Daily Mail, this is because overly high protein intake may reduce urinary citrate levels in the body, which in turn prevents the crystallization of calcium salts. While calcium is a key component of kidney stones. In addition, high protein can also reduce the pH of the urine and increase levels of calcium in the urine. Well, the combination of the two effects are very likely to increase factors in kidney stone formation.

To prove this, scientists at the University of Granada did experiments using rats. They fed 10 rats with high-protein menu, which is composed of 45 percent protein. They also fed the other 10 rats with a balanced diet, otherwise known as the control group.

The experiment lasted for 12 weeks, which in rats is equivalent to nine years in human terms. During the experiment, the rats who had a high-protein diet lost 10 percent of their body weight. However, there was no reduction in cholesterol levels or the amount of fat in their blood.

Not only that, the rats with  high-protein diet also had 88 percent lower levels of urinary citrate and their urine are 15 percent more acidic. This means they are at a higher risk of kidney stones.

Following up the results of these findings, the researchers recommend that people who follow a high protein diet to continue to closely monitor the health condition of their bodies.

“Some of the health problems associated with this diet could be offset by eating lots of fruits and vegetables. Eating large amounts of fruit and vegetables reduces the risk of kidney stones because they are high in potassium and magnesium, which is able to balance the acidity of the high-protein diet,” said Dr. Virginia Aparicio, one of the researcher who was involved in the study.

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