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Exercise, Diet Linked to Kidney Stone RIsk

Update Date: Dec 13, 2013 01:30 PM EST

Exercising and dieting may help lower a person's risk of developing kidney stones.

Recent research revealed that kidney stones, which have been linked to obesity, diabetes, metabolic syndrome and cardiovascular disease, are more of a systemic problem than previously thought.

Lead researcher Dr. Mathew Sorensen of University of Washington School of Medicine, and the Puget Sound Department of Veterans Affairs, and his team wanted to see if energy intake and energy expenditure affect kidney stone formation.

They looked at data from 84,225 postmenopausal women participating in the Women's Health Initiative.

The findings revealed that women who exercised were up to 31 percent less likely to develop kidney stones.

"Even small amounts of exercise may decrease the risk of kidney stones-it does not need to be marathons, as the intensity of the exercise does not seem to matter," explained Sorensen.

Researchers found that women could get the maximum benefit by performing 10 metabolic equivalents per week, which is the equivalent of about three hours of average walking (2-3 mph), four hours of light gardening, or one hour of moderate jogging (6 mph).

The findings also revealed that eating more than 2,220 calories per day increased the risk of developing kidney stones by up to 42 percent.

"Being aware of calorie intake, watching their weight, and making efforts to exercise are important factors for improving the health of our patients overall, and as it relates to kidney stones," Sorensen said

The findings are published in the Journal of the American Society of Nephrology (JASN).

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