We are all advised to make sure our diet is a healthy one with plenty of fresh fruit and vegetables. This advice is even more important to those who suffer from bacterial cystitis/UTIs.
It is easier for bacteria to invade our bodies when our immune systems are low. A healthy diet (and regular exercise!) can help to keep your immune system up to strength, and more able to fight off infections.
A good fluid intake is also advised to flush out any bacteria that are lurking in the bladder, before it has a chance to take hold and multiply. Water or diluted squash are the best drinks to do this. Avoid alcohol as it increases the urines acidity, makes you dehydrated and may irritate the lining of the bladder. Don’t think you have to stop drinking alcohol completely. Just cut down and try to dilute your intake by having a drink of water in between. This advice will also reduce your chances of waking up with a hangover! Try to reduce your intake of tea and coffee as they can also irritate the bladder and as diuretics (they encourage the body to pass urine) they may make you dehydrated.
Some people are unlucky enough to have a bladder wall that bacteria find it easy to cling on to. Cranberry juice has a bacteriostatic effect (it inhibits the growth of the bacteria), so drinking it in between attacks of bacterial cystitis may help to stop attacks. Avoid brands high in sugar.
Sugar encourages the growth of bacteria, so try and reduce the amount of sugar in your diet. Remember sugar is often added to foods in which we don’t expect it to be in, for example, baked beans. Try and select the reduced sugar options that are available for many foods.
You may discover that a particular item of food or drink starts up an attack of bacterial cystitis. In which case try to avoid it. Not easy if it happens to be a favourite of yours! If this is the case, and you just cannot give up your favourite food or drink, try to have it moderation. Be prepared for an attack of bacterial cystitis and follow all the self-help tips for when an attack occurs to prevent it ‘taking hold.’
Suggestions for alternative treatments include;
- Cranberry Juice or Capsules
- Uva Ursi (Bearberry) supplements
- Nettle Tea
- Oil of Wild Oregano
- Coloidal Silver
- Olive Leaf Extract
These and a variety of other helpful products are available through the COB Shop.
To receive fact sheets on any of the above alternative treatments – join us!