There is a lot of press today about kidney stones, where they come from and what to do for them. In fact, kidney stone are plaguing over 300,000 people per year who visit the emergency room with stones. But did you know something as simple as eating watermelon can help reduce both your risk for kidney stones and remove them?
What do the kidneys do?
Everyday your kidneys filter over 200 quarts of blood in order to keep your blood clean and chemically balanced. Approximately 2 out of those 200 quarts are removed every day in the form of waste, through urine. Water is essential in the filtering process because it protects the lining of your kidneys and bladder from coming into direct contact with the chemical and mineral deposits filtered for exit. Kidney diseases such as diabetes and high blood pressure effect the ability your kidneys have to filter blood. Without this filtering process, your blood would become toxic and cause serious problems to the entire system.
How do stones happen?
Kidney stones develop when there is a buildup of minerals and acids in the kidneys. Usually this is caused by not enough water passing through the kidneys to wash out the mineral deposits. Without enough water to keep the kidneys alkaline, uric acid begins to build up (acid from the urine) causing an acidic environment – perfect for the creation of stones. Kidney stones can get up to the size of a golf ball and have sharp crystalline edges – ouch! Drinking excessive soda, caffeine and sugary drinks contribute to the formation of stones. Studies say that if you drink even one sugary drink in a day, your risks for stones go up 23% over someone who chose a healthier alternative, such as pure fruit juice. Fruits contain water naturally, and are great for preventing and relieving stones – especially watermelon!
Watermelon for stones
Watermelon is one of the best natural remedies known for kidney stones mostly because they contain the highest water content of any food, a rockin’ 92% water. Watermelons are also diuretic, meaning they help to increase urine flow, important when facing the risk of stones. Watermelons are also extremely high in potassium (around 170mg per cup), a form of salt that assists your body in dissolving kidney stones. Potassium can also help lower blood pressure, essential for kidney health. Watermelons are also high in nitric oxide and lycopene. Both of these elements are important for maintaining kidney health.
It’s not just the watermelon fruit that supports your kidneys; the black seeds of watermelon are also useful for cleansing both the bladder and the kidneys helping remove stones.
To use the old Edgar Cayce watermelon seed remedy, make 2 liters of tea with crushed or cut seeds (using approximately 2 T. of seeds), drink throughout the day(about 4 cups) for 2 days in a row, taking a break for a day, and repeating again on day 4.
If you have already experienced kidney stones, or are otherwise at risk due to dietary choices, eating watermelons regularly can help prevent the formation of stones. Eating watermelon several times a week is a great way to prevent stones with no side effects. Also, if you are ever experiencing a tight, painful sensation in the kidneys, even just subtle, it’s a good indication of kidney stress. Watermelons are a great thing to reach for if the sensation is mild, in order to bring things back into balance.
If you own a juicer, watermelons are the best foods to juice, as the yield so much juice per fruit. Adding limes or mint to your juice will not only make it delicious but increase the cleansing benefits of beverage.
So if you are concerned about your kidneys or just want to do something great for yourself and your body, turn to watermelons for prevention and healing. It’s a great time of year to experience the power of watermelons and their beneficial effects on your kidneys.
Written by: Stasia Bliss