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Nephron Physiol. 2004;98(2):p55-63.

Role of nutrition in the formation of calcium-containing kidney stones.

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  • 1Renal Division, Brigham and Women's Hospital, Boston, MA 02115, USA.


Diet plays an important role in the pathogenesis of calcium-containing kidney stones. Although much work has demonstrated that specific dietary components alter urinary composition and supersaturation, relatively few studies link the ingestion of these components with actual nephrolithiasis. This article reviews the dietary factors thought to promote or inhibit the formation of calcium stones and discusses the current controversies in the field of nutrition and nephrolithiasis. Special attention is paid to the roles of dietary calcium, supplemental calcium, oxalate, phytate, and n-3 fatty acids. We offer dietary recommendations to individuals who have suffered from a calcium-containing kidney stone, and emphasize that a patient's 24-hour urine chemistries should be used to help guide dietary intervention.

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