Too much iced tea caused Arkansas man’s kidney problems

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LITTLE ROCK, Ark. (AP) — Doctors have traced an Arkansas man’s kidney failure to an unusual cause — his habit of drinking a gallon of iced tea each day.

They ruled out several potential causes before stumbling on a reason for the 56-year-old man’s kidney problems. He said he drank about 16 8-ounce cups of iced tea every day.

Black tea contains a chemical — oxalate — that is known to cause kidney stones or even kidney failure in excessive amounts. It’s believed his kidneys were badly clogged and inflamed by the oxalate. Besides black tea, oxalate is found in spinach, rhubarb, nuts, wheat bran and chocolate.

The man is on dialysis, perhaps for the rest of his life.

The case report is in Thursday’s issue of the New England Journal of Medicine.

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  • Martin

    and for how long did he drink a gallon of ice tea every day? a year? two years? 10 years? way to scare people from not drinking ice tea now.

  • Lynn

    You can die from drinking too much water, too! Geez.. whenever docs can’t figure out the source, they ask the family how much liver or how many glasses of black tea, the person had. Then they blame that. It happened with me. It was not true at all. The cause was stress and smoking. So, now people will stop eating spinach which is high in iron that we need to live. They won’t give their kids spinach so that veggie will go out the window with the rest of our GOOD foods. Cripes, doctors make me SICK, literally!

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