4 supplements that can ease a UTI

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It is thought that UTI's originate from the transfer of bacteria from the anus to the urethra, where they attach to mucosal cells along the urinary tract and then colonise and proliferate. E. coli is the cause in about 80-90% of acute UTIs. Certain supplements can help to relieve the painful symptoms of a urinary tract infection, however it's advisable to always consult a Nutritional Therapist or healthcare provider before taking any supplements. Here are some that are known to help with UTI relief:

What You'll Need

  • Cranberry extract
  • D-mannose
  • Probiotics
  • Vitamin C

What You'll Do

  • Cranberries a well known treatment for UTIs, the antimicrobial action of cranberries comes from a group of flavonoids called proanthocyanidins (PACs). The PACs prevent the bacteria from getting a hold on the cells lining the urinary tract. The normal recommendation is to take 200mg cranberry extract twice a day.
  • D-mannose is another supplement worth considering if you suffer from UTIs. D-mannose is a sugar found in berries (including cranberries) that can bind to the cells that line the urinary tract and prevent bacteria, such as E.coli, from sticking to the lining of the tract. You can find D-Mannose (eg Biotech) at most health shops - it is recommended to take half to one teaspoon with a large glass of water 3-4 times a day while you have an infection, moving to once a day once the infection has cleared.
  • Probiotics containing Lactobacilli may also be considered as a method of preventing UTIs. There is evidence that the Lactobacillus rhamnosus and Lactobacillus reuterii strains are clinically effective.
  • One of the many benefits of Vitamin C is that it can help to acidify the urine, which helps inhibit the growth of infectious bacteria in the urinary tract.
  • Hygiene is important as is making sure you urinate regularly, rather than holding it in. Washing/douching the area daily is also important. Some people find soaking a tampon in yogurt with some added probiotic powder can also be helpful.

Tips & Warnings

  • Always consult a Nutritional Therapist or healthcare provider before taking any supplements.
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