The calcium lost from our bones due to the excess protein of meat
(see Fact City 12) has to go somewhere after it has served its
purpose in our bloodstream. And so does the calcium we have
ingested but have not been able to absorb due to high
phosphorus/calcium ratios. It all ends up in our urine, producing
very high levels of calcium in the kidney system, and all-too
often crystallizing into kidney stones. This is why kidney
stones, the most painful of all medical emergencies, occur far
more frequently in meat-eaters than in vegetarians.
Additionally, there is a great deal of evidence implicating
excessive protein consumption in the destruction of kidney tissue
and the progressive deterioration of kidney function. Extra
protein just doesn't trickle out of the body. It takes hard work
on the part of the kidneys to get rid of the excess. Many studies
have shown that the higher the protein in the diet, the greater
the incidence and the more severe the cases of kidney hypertrophy
That is why people who have suffered kidney damage or loss are
usually able to preserve their remaining kidney function only if
they are put on a protein restricted diet. Those kidney patiens
whose protein intake is not restricted, and particularly those
who continue to eat meat, show rapid deterioration of their
kidneys to the point where many become dependent ob kidney
-- Robertson, W., "Should Recurrent Calcium Oxalate Stone Formers
Become Vegetarians?" British Journal of Urology, 51:427, 1979
-- Coe, F., "Eating Too Much Meat Called Major Cause of Renal
Stones," Internal Medicine News, 12:1, 1979
-- Anon., "Urinary Calcium and Dietary Protein"
Nutritional Review, 38:19, 1980
-- Anon., "Diet and Urinary Calculi"
Nutritional Review, 38:74, 1980
-- Shah, P., "Dietary Calcium and Idiopathic Hypercalcuria"
Lancet, 1:786, 1981
-- Robbins, John, "Diet for A New America"
Stillpoint Publishing, 1987, pg. 200
-- Brenner, B., "Dietary Protein Intake and Progressive Nature of
Kidney Disease . . ."
New England Journal of Medicine, 307:652, 1982
-- Walser, M., "Nutritional Support in Renal Failure: Future
Directions," Lancet, 1:340, 1983
-- Shilling, E., Nutritional Abstracts and Review, 33:114, 1963
-- Walser, M., "Does Dietary Therapy Have a Role in the
American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, 33:1629, 1980
-- McDougall, J., "The McDougall Plan"
New Century Publishers, 1983, pg. 96
Most text in the Fact City series is from John Robbins'
DIET FOR A NEW AMERICA (Stillpoint)
Excerpts reproduced by authorization.
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