Reviewed By: Pramod Kerkar, MD, FFARCSI

Apple cider vinegar (ACV) is made by fermenting apple juice first by adding yeast, which turns the fruit sugar into alcohol, then fermenting the alcohol again with acetic acid producing bacteria so that it will turn into vinegar. That is what gives vinegar the sour taste and strong smell. Apple cider vinegar has been used for many medical purposes for a long time. Apple cider vinegar mainly contains acetic acid and citric acid.

Does Apple Cider Vinegar Help Kidney Stones?

Does Apple Cider Vinegar help Kidney Stones?

The actual mechanism how apple cider vinegar helps in kidney stones is not known as much research has not been done on apple cider vinegar. Some believe that apple cider vinegar does not help in kidney stones disease. But most people still use it as a natural treatment method for kidney stones and it has shown some effect.

Following are the methods that apple cider vinegar is said to be helpful with kidney stones.

  1. Alkalizing Effect: Even though it is an acid, when it is metabolized in the body it produces an alkaline by- products and makes the urine alkaline. Alkaline medium will prevent calcium oxalate, cystine, and uric acid stones. However apple cider vinegar has not been identified to promote the formation of calcium phosphate and struvite stones. Possible explanation for this is that when ACV increase the pH there will be other substances in the urine that will maintain the urine pH in the normal status without making it too alkaline.
  2. Softens and Dissolves Stones: The citric and acetic acid in apple cider vinegar softens, dissolves and even reduce the size of the kidney stones with time so that the stone can be passed out from the urinary tract.
  3. Cleansing the Kidney: Apple cider vinegar acts as potent internal cleanser that flushes out the stones which have been already formed.
  4. Reduce the Formation of New Stones: The alkaline medium of apple cider vinegar prevents new stone formation as well.
  5. Relieves Pain: Stone in the kidney or ureter can be very painful. Apple cider vinegar reduces the pain and discomfort caused by the stones.

How are Kidney Stones Formed?

There are mainly four types of stones formed in the kidneys.

  • Calcium Stones: Calcium Oxalate and Calcium Phosphate
  • Struvite or Magnesium Ammonium Phosphate Stones
  • Uric Acid Stones or Urate
  • Cystine Stones

The mechanism of stone formation is not identified properly however supersaturation (precipitation of solutes) leads to crystal formation in urine. This is called crystallization. Crystallization occurs when the concentration of two ions exceeds their saturation point in the solution. The formation of various types of kidney stones is strongly influenced by urinary pH. Calcium oxalate, cystine, and uric acid stones are formed in acidic medium whereas calcium phosphate and struvite stones are formed in alkaline medium. There are other factors as well that promotes stone formation and alter the pH as well.

How To Use Apple Cider Vinegar?

  • Apple cider vinegar is quite acidic and you should mix it with water and drink.
  • Add 2 tablespoons of apple cider vinegar to one glass of water and drink that glass of mixture throughout the day.
  • Do not drink more than one 8-ounce glass (30 ml) of mixture per day.
  • Drink ample amount of water as well, to flush out the kidneys.
  • You can add the mixture to salad dressings, sauces or ketchup and marinades and have it as well.
  • Apple cider vinegar is also available as capsule and supplement form.

Precautions

Do not consume apple cider vinegar in large amounts throughout the day it can cause

  • Enamel erosion
  • Burn your throat and esophagus
  • Osteoporosis
  • Potassium loss

Do not take apple cider vinegar if you are on

  • Insulin
  • Digoxin
  • Spironolactone

Summary

Apple cider vinegar (ACV) contains acetic acid and citric acid. In the urine it produces an alkaline medium and reduces the acidity of urine. Alkaline medium will prevent calcium oxalate, cystine, and uric acid stones. However apple cider vinegar has not been identified to promote the formation of calcium phosphate and struvite stones. Apple cider vinegar softens and dissolves the stones so that it can be passed out form the urinary tract. Cleanses the kidney and flushes out the stones that has been already formed and reduce further stone formation by the alkalizing the urine. It also reduces the pain and discomfort associated with the kidney stones.

Also Read:

Pramod Kerkar

Written, Edited or Reviewed By:

, MD,FFARCSI

Pain Assist Inc.

Last Modified On: September 19, 2018

This article does not provide medical advice. See disclaimer

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