Urologist and General Surgeon, Dr Evans Akpakli, has revealed that taking high doses of Vitamin C supplements can contribute to the formation of stones in the kidney, urethra, or bladder.

According to him, taking more than one gram of Vitamin C a day is not advisable.

He made this revelation on Vodafone’s innovative healthcare show, Vodafone Healthline.

“Taking more than 1 gram of Vitamin C can predispose one to kidney stones. Other factors that may contribute to the formation of kidney stones include excess salt and protein in one’s diet, excessive intake of cocoa products, disease conditions such as diabetes or gouts, family history of kidney stones, high levels of calcium or uric acid in one’s urine and dehydration as a result of not drinking enough water,” he said.

He added that people with sedentary lifestyles and persons with recurrent urinary tract infections are more prone to kidney stones.

Commenting on the symptoms of kidney stones, Dr Akpakli said the common symptoms of kidney stones include intense pain at the side or lower part of the abdomen, blood in urine, and pain while urinating, among others.

He further noted that to prevent kidney stones, one must take in more water, eat a balanced diet, and reduce salt and animal proteins such as meat in one’s diet.

Meanwhile, Dr Akpakli said because of medical advances, doctors often perform kidney stone surgeries using the Ureteroscopy method. This procedure uses a long tube-like tool known as the ureteroscope to find the stone and break it into small pieces to take them out instead of a surgical incision.

High Intake of Vitamin C as a cause of kidney stones- How it happens

Taking in high doses of Vitamin C supplements causes a significant amount of the supplements to be converted into the compound known as oxalate or oxalic acid in the body.

Excessive amounts of oxalate can lead to the formation of kidney stones. Also, this oxalate can combine with calcium in the urine to form calcium oxalate stones, the most common type of kidney stones.

Vodafone Healthline is Vodafone Ghana’s flagship corporate social investment project that gives all members of the society equal access to relevant and credible health information.

The telecom giant has also made available the Vodafone Healthline Call Centre, which can be reached toll-free via 255 for Vodafone Customers and 0509999255 on other networks.