Q: The other day, someone wrote asking about kidney stones. To cut down on kidney stones, I drink several glasses of lemonade a week.
A: There is some scientific basis for your observation. Doctors often prescribe potassium citrate to disrupt kidney-stone formation.
Lemonade also contains citrate, and some research shows that lemonade therapy reduces the rate of kidney-stone formation (Journal of Urology, April 2007).
Three or four glasses of lemonade per week are probably not enough to do much good, however. Studies of “lemonade therapy” have used one to two quarts of unsweetened or low-sugar lemonade daily.
Joe Graedon is a pharmacologist, and Teresa Graedon is an expert in medical anthropology and nutrition. In their column, Joe and Teresa Graedon answer letters from readers. E-mail them via their Web site: www.peoples pharmacy.com. They can be reached at peoplespharmacy @gmail.com.