You cannot say that hard water directly causes kidney stones. It depends on your health condition. For instance, hard water may become a problem for people who are already prone to kidney disease. People who have a kidney stone history may still not avoid hard water.
- Hard water cannot be blamed for kidney stone formation.
- Calcium in hard water leads to kidney stone formation in people with a history of the disease.
- If you are already prone to kidney stone disease, you should prefer drinking soft water.
- Water softeners and water filtration systems, such as reverse osmosis (RO) systems, can produce soft water for drinking purposes.
Can hard water affect your kidneys?
Hard water can affect the kidneys of people with existing health conditions. That’s because it contains a high concentration of minerals like calcium and magnesium. However, studies have failed to show a correlation between an increase in the number of people having kidney diseases and hard water consumption.
In simple words, there is no evidence to prove that hard water causes kidney stones or other associated kidney problems. Still, you should remember that hard water contains magnesium and calcium.
High concentration of calcium is known to cause kidney-related health problems. So, does hard water cause kidney stones? While it is true that hard water acts as a calcium supplement for the human body, it is not likely to cause kidney health problems for everyone.
Another important consideration is the amount of magnesium and calcium absorbed or consumed by your body. Some people cannot tolerate high levels of hard minerals in their drinking water. Other factors, such as the consumption of vitamin D, affect the intestinal absorption of calcium in the human body.
Suppose you are a perfectly healthy human being with no history of kidney diseases, and you drink hard water on a daily basis. You are not likely to face a high risk of calcium-induced kidney health problems.
Although the levels of water hardness in your area do have a role to play, experts say that you should use water softeners if your water is ‘too hard.’ In such scenarios, do not forget that water softeners use an ion exchange process to produce soft water.
The ion exchange process can be blamed for introducing a high level of sodium in your drinking water. The effects of high sodium content in your drinking water are generally not considered good. That’s why people usually advise against drinking soft water.
How much calcium in hard water is considered healthy? The amount of calcium in hard water is generally gauged by the amount of calcium carbonate in hard water. Water experts say that you have very hard water if it has more than 180 mg of calcium per liter.
Going by that logic, you might seriously consider installing a water softener if you have very hard water in your area. Usually, city administration provides soft water. In any case, it is always a good idea to test your water quality.
You can use home water testing kits to test your water. Another method to test your water is to send a water sample to your nearest local lab, and they will give a detailed water analysis report.
Does hard water affect kidney stones?
Yes, hard water contains high levels of hard minerals such as calcium. Calcium content in your hard water affects the renal calcium stones in your kidneys. Studies have shown that people with a history of calcium renal stones should prefer drinking soft water over hard water.[i]
Is soft water better for kidney stones?
Generally, soft water is considered good for kidney stones because it does not contain high levels of calcium. However, drinking soft water is not the only way to help people with kidney stones.
In other words, you should drink soft water if you previously had kidney stones. It reduces the chances of new kidney stone formation. So, you should prefer everything that lowers the risk of kidney disease.
For those who do not hold a history of kidney disease or kidney stones, you cannot blame hard water for causing kidney stones. Still, if you think that the water you are drinking is hard water, you might be interested in knowing how hard it is.
One simple way to test your water is to send a sample to your nearest local lab. They will provide a detailed water analysis report that may highlight whether your hard water is safe for human consumption or not.
What are the side effects of drinking hard water?
Generally, it is not bad to drink hard water. Although hard water is not considered good for hair and skin health, it is not a direct result of drinking hard water. Remember, using hard water for drinking purposes is not the same as washing your face and body with it.
Dry skin and hair health problems are associated with washing your face and body with hard water. It is always a good idea to test your water. You can use water testing kits to test your water, or you can send a water sample to your local lab.
Hard water cannot be blamed for causing kidney stones if you do not have an existing health condition or a kidney disease history. Generally, people with a history of kidney stones should drink soft water because it lowers their chances of having kidney stones.
Soft water should be preferred over hard water because it contains lower levels of calcium. Hard water, on the other hand, can be safe for people who do not have an existing health condition.
If you have hard water at your home, you might want to know how hard it is. Send a water sample to your nearest local lab, and they will provide a detailed water analysis.
In some cases, your healthcare provider might recommend drinking soft water. You can use water filtration systems or water softeners to obtain soft water.