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What are Oxalates?

Oxalate is generally found in plant foods and less commonly in animal products. Almost all plant or plant-based foods have moderate to high amounts of oxalate. The oxalate content is due to the incomplete oxidation of carbohydrates. Cooking & straining vegetables before eating will reduce levels consumed.

Oxalates inhibit calcium absorption. When oxalate and calcium combine, the result is an insoluble calcium-oxalate solid crystal. Low consumption will only form small crystals, which can be excreted in urine. Kidney stones develop when too many of these crystals form in the bladder. Oxalate can also combine with iron to form iron-oxalate crystals, which are a major driver of gout.