Antibiotics May Lead to Kidney Stones

The instances of kidney stones have risen dramatically in new demographics like children, women, and African Americans and a newly released study from the Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia has found that taking commonly prescribed antibiotics is a factor in that rise. Researchers examined the health records of 25,981 people 3 to 12 months before their first incidence of kidney stones and a control group consisting of 259,797 people without kidney stones. They discovered that the risk of kidney stones increased after patients were given any of 5 different categories of often used antibiotics; sulfas, cephalosporins, fluoroquinolones, nitrofurantoin/methenamine, and broad-spectrum penicillins. The risk increase was anywhere from 27 percent higher for penicillins to twice that number for sulfonamides. Gregory E. Tasian, MD, MSc, MSCE, a pediatric urologist and epidemiologist at The Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia (CHOP) led the study. Based on his experience,

The emergence of kidney stones in children is particularly worrisome, because there is limited evidence on how to best treat children for this condition…The fact that stones were once rare and are now increasingly common could contribute to the inappropriate use of diagnostic tests such as CT scans for children with kidney stones, since healthcare providers historically have not been accustomed to evaluating and treating children with kidney stones. These trends of increased frequency of kidney stones among adolescents, particularly females, are also concerning when you consider that kidney stones are associated with a higher risk of chronic kidney disease, cardiovascular and bone disease, particularly among young women.”

Related: Natural Remedies for Kidney Stones, Prevention, and What Really Causes Them

Kidney Stones And Other Disease

Long associated with older men, the rising risk of kidney stones among other parts of the population means other, connected health conditions will likely increase as well. Kidney stones have been linked to chronic kidney disease, heart disease, stroke, and bone disease. There has been a correlation between the increase in kidney stones and the increase of some of these conditions, and that’s becoming more difficult to ignore. For example, the lifetime risk for kidney stones for women between 1997 and 2012 rose from 10.5% to 15.2%. Meanwhile, the rate of hospitalization for women aged 35-44 due to acute ischemic strokes rose by 30%.

Related: How to Detoxify From Antibiotics and Other Chemical Antimicrobials

Kidney stones by no means guarantee someone will have a stroke, but both conditions are affecting increasingly younger and more diverse demographics. Kidney stones are likely to reoccur, increasing the risk for other diseases related to kidney stones. What does that look like for a twenty-year-old who has developed kidney stones?

Related: Inexpensive, Easy Detox – The One Gallon Challenge

The Key is Holistic

It’s so easy to look for or focus on a single reason that things have happened. We all want a definitive answer or an easy scapegoat. But the real answers are often messier. Our lives and our health are made up of minute ripples, that we don’t keep track of and forget about until all of a sudden it’s serious. If a recurring issue isn’t addressed at the root cause (likely diet), it will continue to accumulate damage in the body, until the body is no longer able to function properly. Kidney stones are not the only serious health condition becoming more prevalent in younger people. This will be the first generations of Americans with shorter, lower quality lifespans than the previous generation. The system is designed to keep us well enough to function, but that doesn’t always equate with a high quality of life.

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Cranberries – Health Benefits, Natural Remedies, Nutrition Info, and Recipes

Cranberries Are Good For…

Cranberries are well known for treating urinary tract infections, but they do much more – from cardiovascular protection to cancer prevention.


Nutrition Composition of Cranberries

Cranberries contain lots of fiber, vitamin C, and manganese.

Nutrition Facts For 1 Cup of Chopped Cranberries% DV
Total Fat:0.1 g0%
  Saturated Fat:0.0 g
   Trans Fat:~
Cholesterol:0 mg0%
Sodium:2 mg0%
Total Carbohydrate:13 g4%
  Dietary Fiber:5 g20%
  Sugars:4 g
Protein:0 g
Vitamin A66.0 IU1%
Vitamin C14.6 mg24%
Vitamin D~~
Vitamin E1.3 mg7%
Vitamin K5.6 mcg7%
Thiamin0.0 mg1%
Riboflavin0.0 mg1%
Niacin0.1 mg1%
Vitamin B60.1 mg3%
Vitamin B120.0 mcg0%
Pantothenic Acid0.3 mg3%
Choline6.0 mg
Betaine0.2 mg
Calcium8.8 mg1%
Iron0.3 mg2%
Magnesium6.6 mg2%
Phosphorus14.3 mg1%
Potassium93.5 mg3%
Sodium2.2 mg0%
Zinc0.1 mg1%
Copper0.1 mg3%
Manganese0.4 mg20%
Selenium0.1 mcg0%


Natural Remedies and Prevention with Cranberries

The phytonutrients in cranberries include phenolic acids, proanthocyanidins, anthocyanins, flavonoids, and triterpenoids. It has long been known that cranberries can prevent and cure urinary tract infections. The proanthocyanidins in cranberries inhibit bacteria from latching onto the lining of the urinary tract. These proanthocyanidins also prevent bacteria that cause ulcers from latching onto the stomach lining.

Cranberry extracts support the immune system and have been proven to reduced the risk of colds and flu. Cranberries help the entire digestive tract from aiding in gum health in the mouth through supporting the balance of bacteria in the gut.

Cranberries are both an anti-inflammatory and an antioxidant, especially when the berries are eaten as a whole food. The anti-inflammatory properties reduce inflammation in the stomach, the colon and the cardiovascular system. In the vascular system, these properties inhibit the formation of plaque on the vessel walls.

Studies have confirmed that cranberries help prevent cancer, specifically breast, colon, prostate, and lung cancer.

Native Americans used cranberries in a poultice to stop bleeding and for their antibiotic qualities.

Cranberry History and Culture

Cranberries were grown by Native Americans before Europeans came to the continent. Colonists exported cranberries to England in the early 1800s. Cultivation spread across the northern area of what is now the United States and Canada to Scandinavia and Great Britain. Cranberries are grown in Europe and Northern Asia as well as Chile.

Cranberry Agriculture

Cranberries grow on low-lying vines in very particular soil conditions: a bed of sand, covered with gravel, covered with peat, covered with sand. These soil conditions can be found in the northern United States wetlands where glaciers once carved the land. Cranberries are often raised in bogs and harvested while floating on water.

Are there Genetically Modified Cranberries?

Cranberries are not genetically modified; however, cranberry juices and dried cranberries are often sweetened with either high fructose corn syrup or beet sugar and 90% of corn and the sugar beet crops are genetically modified.

Organic Versus Conventional Cranberries

Proponents of conventional farming methods for cranberries state that the bogs used to raise cranberries are rife with natural pests and that the wetlands encourage fungi. The What’s On My Food? website reveals 13 pesticides found on cranberries. Of these, 3 are known or probable carcinogens, 6 are suspected hormone disruptors, 5 are neurotoxins, 1 is a developmental or reproductive toxin and 6 are honeybee toxins.

It is interesting to hear from the other side. Cranberry Hill Farm, an organic cranberry grower, had this to say about their organic production:

We are willing to accept lower yields and do not ”push” our vines into high yield production with chemical fertilizers. This keeps the soil and the insects in balance, we welcome the presence of our helpers: such as spiders, wasps, bees, birds and other residents of the bog.

In the spring we flood the bog with clean spring water to retard the development of pests and  weeds.  We put on a layer of sand to bury some insect eggs and improve the surface of the bog.  We feed the vine with fish emulsion and other organic nutrients, and weed, weed, weed by hand.

It is a lot of work and we hope that the spirits of the Native Americans who lived here before us  and appreciated the cranberry harvest, see us and approve of how we manage our bogs.”

Fair Trade Cranberries

We did not find an fair trade issues for Cranberries. The U.S. is the leading grower of cranberries in the world.

Cranberry Human Rights Issues

We found no human rights issues regarding cranberry agriculture, but there are certainly environmental issues and human repercussions to the extensive pesticide use for commercial growers.

Things You Didn’t Know About Cranberries

There are only 3 commercially cultivated fruit crops that are native to North America. Cranberries are one of the three.

Cranberry vines do not need to be replanted each year. If properly cared for, vines last for years. Many cranberry farms produce crops each year from vines 150+ years old.

How to Store Cranberries So They Last Longer

Be sure to sort, removing any damaged or shriveled berries before refrigeration. Berries can be refrigerated for up to 20 days. Frozen berries can be kept for several years. Do not thaw the berries until you are ready to use them.

How to Pick Good Cranberries

Choose firm, plump, dark red berries. They should not be bruised, broken, shriveled, tough, or sticky.

Things to Consider

There is one contraindication for adding cranberries to your diet. If you suffer from kidney stones, especially calcium-oxalate stones, cranberries may exacerbate your condition.

Remember that the benefits of cranberries can be negated with pesticide consumption, GMO consumption, or sugar consumption. Look for organic dried berries sweetened with juice, organic unsweetened juice which can be sweetened with stevia or other juices, and organic fresh or frozen whole berries.

Whole berries pack a much greater nutritional punch than juice.

Raw Cranberry Relish Recipes:

The following recipes come courtesy of Raw Chef Dan.

Raw Cranberry Relish

The following is a recipe from Raw Chef Dan for Raw Cranberry Relish.

  • 1 cup fresh cranberries
  • 4 Medjool dates
  • 2 Tbsp chopped ginger
  • ½ tsp. sea salt
  • ½ med orange
  • ½ juice of 1 lemon
  • 1/4 cup loose mint leaves
  • 1/2 red apple

Simply blend the ingredients in a food processor.

Spiced Cranberry Slaw



Further Reading:

Natural Remedies for Kidney Stones, Prevention, and What Really Causes Them

More than 12% of men and about 7% of women will have to deal with kidney stones at some point in their lives. Once you have suffered through them, statistics say you’re more likely to have them again.

Kidney stones aren’t always a problem; they typically pass through urination, without causing symptoms. On the other hand, when stones grow to sufficient size, they can impede the urinary tract and can cause incredible pain, perhaps the worst humans experience.

Anyone who has ever suffered from a kidney stone, whether they needed surgery, or passed it, knows that statistics say they’ve got an 80% chance of recurrence. Kidney stones have a tendency to open people’s minds to natural medicine.

What Causes Kidney Stones

Most individuals with kidney stones have a chemical abnormality that contributes to the tendency to form the stones. Regardless, in almost every case, people who get kidney stones don’t drink enough water; they often drink lots of coffee and soda instead.

Conventional doctors will tell us that common causes include too much calcium, too many vitamin supplements, too much animal protein, and genetics.

Genetics can lead to a predisposition to kidney stones, but learned behavior (diet) within the family is much more likely to be reason the stones run in families. Certain drugs, cheap and ineffective supplements, soda, factory farmed meat, factory farmed dairy, table salt, tap water, and an acidic diet can all lead to the formation of kidney stones.

For the most part, the high calcium theory has been thoroughly debunked, and only the most out of touch doctors will still offer it, (though there are plenty of them). It has been proven that limiting calcium doesn’t eliminate the problem; it has the opposite effect – making it worse.

An acidic, conventional, modern diet leads to problems like kidney stones.

A diet of fresh, unrefined, whole foods prevents kidney stones.

Different Types of Kidney Stones

Typically, a kidney stone is formed by a super-saturation of minerals and acid salts in urine that crystallize into a stone. This type of kidney stone is typically caused by highly acidic or highly alkaline urine, or by not drinking enough fluids (or drinking the wrong kind of fluids).

Other types of stones include: Struvite stones (typically found in women as a result of urinary tract infections), uric acid stones (a byproduct of poor protein metabolism due to factory farmed animal product consumption) , and cystine stones which are rare (a result of a hereditary disorder that causes the kidneys to excrete large quantities of specific amino acids).

How to Prevent Kidney Stones

Magnesium citrate, a complex B vitamin with extra vitamin B6, lots of stevia sweetened lemonade along with a healthy diet will not allow kidney stones of significant size to form.

Harvard researchers found that 180 mg of magnesium and 10 mg of B6 taken daily can actually prevent 92.3% of kidney stones. Other studies show huge reductions with magnesium alone at 500mg a day.

Diet is crucial.

Fresh, raw, organic produce is the foundation of a healthy diet. Avoid refined foods including table salt and sugars and flours. Drink lots of water. Spring water from a clean source has numerous health benefits, and distilled water is very pure and good for you if you consume enough produce. Drink lemonade sweetened with stevia each day. Lemons also reduce the likelihood of kidney stones.

If you drink coffee, switch to tea. Studies show that black and green tea reduce the chances of developing kidney stones. Don’t eat conventional factory farmed animal products.

Avoid poor quality, unhealthy supplements. Especially avoid poor quality protein powders, vitamin C, vitamin D, calcium, and various mineral supplements.

Other foods that prevent and help eliminate kidney stones include raw apple cider vinegar, dandelion root, olive oil, kidney beans, and watermelon.

Natural Remedies for kidney stones

Drink a half a gallon of cranberry, stevia lemonade per 100 pounds of body weight every day. See sources below for the recipe. Be careful with cranberry juice long-term. Short-term, it’s fine for helping pass a stone and for treating a urinary infection. Cranberry juice contains polyphenolic compounds that dissolve kidney stones and flush them out of the body through the urine. But long-term use has been shown in some studies to possibly cause stone formation, probably due to its high oxalic acid.

Drinking half a gallon of water or lemonade (see above) each day for every 100 pounds of weight is crucial to passing and dissolving existing kidney stones.

Also drink a cup of apple cider vinegar and eat a tablespoon of unrefined blackstrap molasses each day daily, to balance the body’s pH.

If you’re shopping for a tincture or a tea (or would like to make your own) look for the following herbs that have been shown time and time again to help remove kidney stones painlessly and quickly:

  • Nettle leaf helps maintain the flow of water through the kidneys and bladder and helps keep crystals from forming into stones.
  • Hydrangea root behaves as a powerful diuretic and also an antilithic herb, which ejects and prevents kidney stones
  • Gravel root provides defense against kidney stones and increases the flow of urine. Gravel root also plays a role in maintaining an alkaline body by expelling excess uric acid, a cause of kidney stones
  • Marshmallow root eliminates toxins and soothes cell membranes in the urinary system, making it easier to release kidney stones
  • Horsetail herb helps regulate the calcium stored in the body and soothes urinary tract inflammation
  • Uva ursi leaves increase renal circulation and limits the acid content in urine
  • Corn silk reduces the risk of recurring kidney stones and helps treat bladder infections
  • Goldenrod flowers fight urinary tract infection and help flush out kidney stones

We recommend Shillington’s Kidney Stone Dissolve Formula, and his Kidney Bladder Formula. You can make your own, and here are the recipes:

A part is a part by volume and not by weight unless otherwise specified.

Kidney/Bladder Formula – Recipe

  • 2 – Parts Juniper Berry (Mono Sperma is best)
  • 1 – Part Corn Silk
  • 1 – Part Uva Ursi Leaf
  • 1 – Part Horsetail Herb
  • 1 – Part Pipsissewa Leaf
  • 1 – Part Burdock Herb
  • 1 – Part Goldenrod Flowers
  • 1 – Part Gravel Root
  • 1 – Part Hydrangea Root

Check out How To Make a Tincture for the rest of the instructions for the tinctures, and checkout the product links below for recommended dosage information for all recipes.

Kidney/Bladder Tea – Recipe

  • 2 – Parts Juniper Berries (Mono Sperma is best)
  • 1 – Part Uva Ursi Leaf
  • 1 – Part Dandelion Leaf
  • 1 – Part Corn Silk
  • 1 – Part Parsley Leaf
  • 1 – Part Horsetail Herb
  • 1 – Part Goldenrod Flowers
  • 1 – Part Orange Peel (or Lemon Peel)
  • 1 – Part Peppermint Leaf
  • 1 – Part Hydrangea Root
  • 1 – Part Gravel Root

Kidney Stone Dissolve Formula – Recipe

  • 1 – Part Hydrangea root
  • 1 – Part Gravel root
  • 1 – Part Marshmallow root

Kidney Stone Dissolve Tea – Recipe

  • 1 – Part Hydrangea root
  • 1 – Part Gravel root
  • 1 – Part Marshmallow root

Read Inexpensive, Easy Detox – The One Gallon Challenge for a recipe for cranberry stevia lemonade.

Check out Shillington’s Body Balance to balance your PH. Take Total Nutrition Formula instead of cheap, problematic multis.

Of course prevention is preferable. This is one battle you never want to fight. If you recognize yourself as a person who doesn’t drink enough water, as one who drinks a lot of coffee and sodas, or you have a highly acidic diet, now is the time to change your habits.

If you have ever suffered from kidney stones in the past or are suffering from them now, combine both the prevention instructions and the remedy to end the current attack and prevent future occurrences.

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