Apple Cider Vinegar For Kidney Stone: 5 Things To Know 2023

Apple cider vinegar (ACV) has become an increasingly popular natural treatment for many ailments and chronic diseases. It has been shown to have antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, antidiabetic, and antimicrobial properties making it a popular natural remedy in the health industry. In this article, we will explore the use of apple cider vinegar for kidney stones.

One of ACV purported uses is the treatment and prevention of kidney stones. Kidney stones are hard deposits of excess minerals and salts that develop inside the kidneys along the urinary tract. Kidney stones can vary in size and composition and are often very painful.

ACV is believed to have specific properties that can treat kidney stones by reducing kidney stone pain, potentially dissolving stones, and preventing kidney stone formation. This is due to ACV’s acetic acid content, antioxidant properties, and alkalizing effect on the body. 

This article will discuss the potential benefits of using ACV to treat kidney stones and explore the scientific research behind these claims. We will explore how to consume apple cider vinegar, including drinking apple cider vinegar and apple cider vinegar gummies benefits.

Apple Cider Vinegar For Kidney Stone

Apple cider vinegar has been touted as a potential alternative treatment for kidney stones. Made from fermenting apples, ACV contains a specific compound known as acetic acid,[1] which is believed to be responsible for many of its health benefits. Some of the potential benefits of using ACV for the treatment and prevention of kidney stones include:

  • Decreasing the risk of kidney stones.
  • Limiting kidney stone growth.
  • Reducing kidney stone pain.

What Can Apple Cider Vinegar Do For Kidney Stones? 

Decrease The Risk Of Kidney Stones

Once you have gone through the excruciating pain of a kidney stone, you will want to do anything you can to prevent the formation of another. You can use different modalities to prevent the formation of new kidney stones,[2] such as diet modification, medication management, increasing fluid intake, and losing weight.

But you can also rely on apple cider vinegar for kidney stone pain. Apple cider vinegar is a natural treatment that helps reduce the risk of future kidney stones by alkalinizing the urine, encouraging weight loss, and decreasing oxidative stress. We will discuss the research behind these claims in further detail.

Reduce Pain

Pain is often due to inflammation of the tissues of the body. In the inflammatory process,[3] fluid will build up in the tissues leading to swelling, which pushes against sensitive nerve endings. Additionally, specific chemical messengers are released during inflammation, impacting how nerves behave and increasing pain sensations.

Drinking apple cider vinegar has been shown to exhibit numerous anti-inflammatory properties.[4] Lowering inflammation can reduce pain caused by kidney stones. Daily consumption of ACV will reduce overall inflammation in the body. It can also be beneficial in an acute situation, such as a kidney stone, to lower inflammation and reduce pain.

Apple Cider Vinegar For Kidney Stone: What The Research Says

Current research on these home remedies endorses the use of apple cider vinegar to prevent an individual from developing kidney stones. There is currently no research that supports ACV can help with dissolving kidney stones. We will discuss the ways that ACV can prevent you from developing kidney stones below.

Citrate Content 

Most kidney stones are formed due to the acidic nature of the urine. Urine can be made more alkaline in many ways, including ACV consumption. Apple cider vinegar has numerous ingredients, such as citric acid, that can contribute to alkalinizing the urine.

Research[5] has shown that increased citric acid in the urine prevents new kidney stone formation and reduces further kidney stone growth in patients with residual stones. Citric acid is a main ingredient in ACV, and therefore drinking apple cider vinegar may prevent kidney stone formation.

Further research is needed on the exact relationship between the citric acid content in ACV and stone formation. There is currently a clinical trial[6] assessing whether certain beverages, including apple cider vinegar, increase urinary citrate and reduce stone formation. This research will help scientists come to a more definite conclusion regarding the impact of ACV and its citrate content on stone formation.

Potassium Content

Research has shown that potassium can alkalinize the urine and solubilize urine calcium,[7] preventing kidney stone formation. Apple cider vinegar contains small amounts of potassium.[8] Although the amount of potassium in ACV is not very high, it still may provide some alkalizing effects to the urine, which can prevent the formation of kidney stones. Further research is needed to explore the role of potassium content in ACV and stone formation.

Epigenetic Changes

A 2019 study[9] on vinegar’s impact on kidney stone formation discovered that vinegar might cause epigenetic changes that prevent renal calcium oxalate crystal formation. Calcium oxalate stones[10] are one of the most common types of kidney stones. This study showed that vinegar prevented stone formation by altering the epigenetic expression of specific genes that influence the excretion of citrate and calcium in the urine.

Although this study was not on apple cider vinegar specifically, ACV is a type of vinegar that also might demonstrate similar properties that can help to prevent new kidney stones.

Weight Loss

Apple cider vinegar is a popular weight loss trend. Research has shown that drinking apple cider vinegar can boost weight loss.[11] Losing weight can further decrease the risk of kidney stone formation, as obesity is a significant risk factor.[12]

Antioxidant Content

Apple cider vinegar has been touted for its antioxidant properties, which are said to reduce inflammation. Studies have shown that ACV induces a protective effect against oxidative kidney injury.[13] These protective effects can defend the kidneys against oxidative stress, which can result in tissue damage. The overall reduction of inflammation in the body can potentially reduce the risk of kidney stone formation and reduce pain.

How To Use Apple Cider Vinegar For Kidney Stone

Incorporating apple cider vinegar into your daily routine may help prevent kidney stones. Photo: Africa Studio/Shutterstock

Incorporating apple cider vinegar into your daily routine may help prevent kidney stones. Here are some ways to add ACV to your daily routine:

  • Diluted ACV Drink: Mix 1-2 tablespoons of raw, unfiltered apple cider vinegar with a glass of filtered water. You can add a teaspoon of raw honey for added sweetness.
  • ACV & Lemon Juice: Combine 1-2 tablespoons of ACV with 2 ounces of lemon juice in a glass of water. Lemon juice contains citrate, so adding lemon can further help in preventing kidney stone formation by alkalinizing the urine. If you want to take your apple cider vinegar before bed, try this as a warm drink to wind you down for sleep.
  • ACV & Baking Soda: Combine 1/2 teaspoon of baking soda with 2 tablespoons of ACV in a glass of warm water. The sodium bicarbonate in baking soda can help to alkalize the body and reduce the acidity of urine, potentially preventing kidney stone formation.
  • ACV Gummies: If you aren’t fond of the taste of ACV, you can try it in supplement form, for instance, gummies.

The reason you are consuming ACV will impact how much apple cider vinegar you should have daily. Around 1-2 tablespoons are recommended for kidney stone prevention.

Have you had a bottle lying around for a while and wondered, does apple cider vinegar go bad? ACV has an expiration date, and it is best to consume fresh ACV to reap all the benefits.

Apple Cider Vinegar For Kidney Stone: Precautions

Although ACV has countless health benefits, there are some side effects of apple cider vinegar to be aware of.

Research[14] has shown that ACV can lower your blood sugar and potassium because of how the body metabolizes it. It is especially important for diabetics or those who take medications that lower potassium to be aware of this potential side effect because the interaction can be dangerous.

Fermented vinegar such as ACV is highly acidic and can cause chemical irritation, burns,[15] and damage to tooth enamel. For this reason, it is crucial always to consume ACV in a diluted form. Ensure that if you consume ACV, it is mixed with water or another beverage to reduce the potential harmful effects.

Apple cider vinegar can also interact with certain medications, so make sure you check with your doctor before adding ACV to your current routine.

When To See A Doctor 

If you are experiencing severe pain in your abdomen, back, or groin, urinary symptoms, nausea, vomiting, or blood in your urine, contact your doctor immediately and seek medical treatment, as these can be signs of a kidney stone. It is never recommended to treat a kidney stone on your own, and these natural therapies should only be used in consultation with your healthcare provider. Before starting any supplements or vitamins, always consult your doctor to ensure that what you are beginning is a safe choice.


While apple cider vinegar may not be able to dissolve existing kidney stones, it does show promise in preventing the formation of new kidney stones and preventing current stones from becoming larger. ACV has alkalizing properties that may prevent kidney stone formation. By incorporating this natural remedy into your daily routine and making healthy lifestyle changes, you can help support your kidney health and reduce the risk of kidney stones.

Always consult with a healthcare professional before starting any new treatment or supplement regimen, especially if you have existing kidney issues or a history of kidney stones. Having your healthcare team on board is best to help you make an educated decision.

Frequently Asked Questions

Is apple cider vinegar good for kidney stones?

Apple cider vinegar can alkalinize the urine which may prevent future kidney stones and reduce inflammation which may contribute to reduction in pain.

How does apple cider vinegar help kidney stones?

Research has shown that its citrate content, potassium content, antioxidant properties, and weight loss benefits may all contribute to reduction in kidney stone occurrence.

How should I take apple cider vinegar?

Apple cider vinegar should always be consumed diluted either in water, or another beverage of your choice. It can also be consumed in other forms like gummies or chews. 

Is apple cider vinegar safe?

Apple cider vinegar is safe to take for most healthy adults. It is best to check with your doctor before adding anything new to your diet as ACV can interact with certain medications and have negative effects for people with certain diseases.

Blog Topics:

Kidney Stones

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