Beer and kidney stones

From the Big Book O’ Beer:

This one’s for the guys: Stout, porter, or other hops-heavy beers can help prevent calcium deposits from forming in your kidneys. That’s a good thing, since calcium deposits eventually turn into painful, jagged asteroids of pain called kidney stones. Researchers in Finland tracked 27,000 men and found that every glass of beer they drank daily reduced their risk of kidney stones by 40 percent. If it’s too late, beer can also help you flush out that kidney stone. Your doc might want to suggest cranberry juice, but beer does the same thing—it dilates your sensitive tubing, so the stone can exit your body as painlessly as possible.

Yikes! Kidney stones are something that I’ve never had to experience, and I hope I never have to.

Of course, if you’re sitting around drinking beer thinking you’re safe, the extra weight gain and lack of activity will make you more susceptible to stones, which will certainly offset any benefit you may have been deriving.

Remember, as with everything else: Moderation and exercise.

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About Al

Forty-something, married, with two kids. I generally prefer the English styles - ESB, IPA - but am willing to try just about anything. You can reach me at

2 thoughts on “Beer and kidney stones

  1. Well, it’s now 2010…and my Urologist now says very emphatically that hops/beer is a major dietary source of oxylates, the composition of my (and most) kidney stones. Apparently, the lighter the beer, the less the hops, the less the threat. I guess it is according to who you ask!

    PS: To those who have never experienced kidney stones…comparitively speaking, they make child birth a pleasure!

  2. Darn! I am going to have to change my drinking habits as a result of reading this. Saw my wife pass a stone and she said it was worse than childbirth.

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