Health & Fitness

Does Drinking Tea Cause Kidney Stones?

Kidney stones form when high amounts of minerals collect in your urinary tract and clump together, leading to painful and uncomfortable symptoms such as discomfort during urination, cloudy or smelly urine, strain when urinating and the need to strain when doing so. Many individuals assume certain foods and drinks could contribute to kidney stone formation such as tea. According to research however, drinking tea will not increase your risk for kidney stones.

While limiting oxalate intake may help prevent kidney stones, not all forms of oxalates are created equal. Loose-leaf tea contains lower per-gram oxalates than leafy vegetables like spinach and rhubarb; black tea’s content of oxalates may be higher while other varieties such as green and white teas may have significantly less.

Herbal teas can contain anywhere from 5-15mg of oxalate per cup, and their additional fluid benefits make them particularly helpful in kidney stone prevention.

Chamomile tea is the best option to drink when dealing with kidney stones, having been shown to reduce calcium oxalate crystals that form kidney stones and provide antioxidant protection for your kidneys. Other popular herbs used as tea ingredients are hibiscus, dandelion and ginger; although these could potentially benefit your body in different ways. It’s essential that any herbal beverage be discussed with a healthcare provider first to make an informed decision before drinking anything herbal.

Green and white teas can also help prevent kidney stones. With less oxalate than black tea, these types of beverages have been proven to alter crystal formation patterns so they’re easier to pass when urinating.

If you are concerned about the impact of oxalates on your kidney stone risk, it would be beneficial to speak to a healthcare provider. They can offer guidance as to which teas are safe as well as any dosage of oxalates that could be potentially hazardous in relation to your own unique circumstances.

Redbush herbal tea may be just what you’re searching for if you want a caffeine-free tea that is low in oxalates, such as those grown from South African plants commonly known as rooibos or yerba mate. Studies have demonstrated its anti-inflammatory and stress relieving properties as well as being high in antioxidants, and even having potassium as a source. Furthermore, recent research showed how its main herb blumea balsamifera or sambong contained within this tea can actually reduce laboratory grown calcium oxalate crystal sizes by up to 43%, providing another option if black tea consumption needs be limited due to kidney stone issues.