What Are Oxalates?
Oxalates are naturally-occurring substances found in plants, animals, and humans. The kidneys excrete oxalates into the urine.
Why Should I Follow a Low-Oxalate Diet?
Eating a diet low in oxalates can reduce your risk of developing kidney stones . Kidney stones sometimes form when oxalates and calcium bind together. Decreasing the amount of oxalates that are present in the urine lowers this risk.
A low-oxalate diet usually limits oxalate intake to about 50 milligrams (mg) per day. Because oxalates are found in many different foods, it is important to become familiar with which foods are fine to eat in moderation and which foods should be avoided.
Eating Guide for a Low-Oxalate Diet
This chart from the American Dietetic Association spotlights foods that are either low or moderate in oxalates. If you have calcium stones, it is important to decrease your sodium intake, as well.
Coffee, fruit and vegetable juice (from the recommended list), fruit punch
Apples, apricots (fresh or canned), avocado, bananas, cherries (sweet), cranberries, grapefruit, red or green grapes, lemon and lime juice, melons, nectarines, papayas, peaches, pears, pineapples, oranges, strawberries (fresh), tangerines
Artichokes, asparagus, bamboo shoots, broccoli, brussels sprouts, cabbage, cauliflower, chayote squash, chicory, corn, cucumbers, endive, kale, lettuce, lima beans, mushrooms, onions, peas, peppers, potatoes, radishes, rutabagas, zucchini
Egg noodles, rye bread, cooked and dry cereals without nuts or bran, crackers with unsalted tops, white or wild rice
Meat, fish, poultry, eggs, egg whites, egg replacements
Homemade soup (using the recommended veggies and meat), low-sodium bouillon, low-sodium canned
Cookies, cakes, ice cream, pudding without chocolate or nuts, candy without chocolate or nuts
Butter, margarine, cream, oil, salad dressing, mayonnaise
Unsalted potato chips or pretzels, herbs (eg, garlic, garlic powder, onion powder), lemon juice, salt-free seasoning blends, vinegar
Beer, cola, wine, buttermilk, lemonade or limeade (without added vitamin C), milk
Lunch meat, ham, bacon, hot dogs, bratwurst, sausage, chicken nuggets, cheddar cheese, canned fish and shellfish
Tomato soup, cheese soup
Coconuts, lemon or lime juices, sugar or sweeteners, jellies or jams (from the recommended list)
Fruit and vegetable juices (from the recommended list), chocolate milk, rice milk, hot cocoa, tea
Blackberries, blueberries, black currants, cherries (sour), fruit cocktail, mangoes, orange peel, prunes, purple plums
Baked beans, carrots, celery, green beans, parsnips, summer squash, tomatoes, turnips
White bread, cornbread or cornmeal, white English muffins, saltine or soda crackers, brown rice, vanilla wafers, spaghetti and other noodles, firm tofu, bagels, oatmeal
Macadamia nuts, pistachio nuts, english walnuts
Jams or jellies (made with the recommended fruits), pepper
Chocolate drink mixes, soy milk, Ovaltine, instant iced tea, fruit juices of fruits listed below
Apricots (dried), red currants, figs, kiwi, plums, rhubarb
Beans (wax, dried), beets and beet greens, chives, collard greens, eggplant, escarole, dark greens of all kinds, kale, leeks, okra, parsley, rutabagas, spinach, Swiss chard, tomato paste, watercress
Amaranth, barley, white corn flour, fried potatoes, fruitcake, grits, soybean products, sweet potatoes, wheat germ and bran, buckwheat flour, All Bran cereal, graham crackers, pretzels, whole wheat bread
Dried beans, peanut butter, soy burgers, miso
Carob, chocolate, marmalades
Nuts (peanuts, almonds, pecans, cashews, hazelnuts), nut butters, sesame seeds, tahini paste
- Become familiar with serving sizes. Be aware of how many grams of oxalates you are eating.
- Consider meeting with a registered dietitian to develop an eating plan.
Additional tips on preventing kidney stones:
- Stay hydrated by drinking plenty of fluids every day.
- Do not take large doses of vitamin C supplements (limit to less than 1,000 mg/day).
- Keep protein intake below 80 grams/day.
- Eat a low salt diet (less than 2,000 mg/day).
- Reviewer: Dianne Scheinberg Rishikof MS, RD, LDN
- Review Date: 09/2013 -
- Update Date: 09/30/2013 -