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Low-oxalate diet


Got kidney problems? Your practitioner may suggest a low-oxalate diet, which usually limits your oxalate intake to 40 to 50 mg each day. If you currently manage kidney stone issues, you’re probably already familiar with oxalates, the naturally occurring chemicals in plant foods that contribute to the formation of crystals, including kidney stones. Oxalates aren’t inherently harmful, but some people believe that oxalate sensitivity or accumulation may contribute to thyroid conditions, vulvodynia, autism, fibromyalgia, nutritional deficiencies, and other health problems. The theory behind a low-oxalate diet is that you can reduce the symptoms of these conditions through diet changes. With a low-oxalate diet, you take a comprehensive approach to oxalate management, and you evaluate your calcium, sodium, protein, vitamin C, and fluid intake as well. A low-oxalate diet can be therapeutic, but it might not feel “good-for-you” because it limits healthy foods like beans and greens! Note that the list of foods (and drinks) to eat, limit, and skip is looooong, and not at all intuitive. We offer a sample list here, but the first link listed below is for a handy PDF guide from the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center (UPMC) that can help you make the most informed decisions.

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