Antibiotics are effective for short-term treatment of acute UTIs. However, for chronic recurrent UTIs, repeated use of antibiotics may cause side effects. These include induction of drug resistant bacteria (superbugs) and other unwanted side effects like yeast infection. Thus, it is desirable to treat chronic recurrent UTIs without using antibiotics. In addition to using NeuEve suppositories and balm cream, taking dietary supplements as a combination can also help prevent UTIs.
Certain dietary supplements are good for preventing chronic and recurrent UTIs. These include D-Mannose, cranberry extract, and vitamin D.
D-Mannose is a simple sugar. It forms a part of a structure on the cell surface. When the E. coli bacteria gets into the urinary tract, it latches onto the cells by binding to the mannose structure as a receptor, and to cause an infection.
Two dose are suggested:
1) For preventing frequent UTIs: 2 grams once daily, or 1 gram twice daily
2) For treating an active UTI: 1.5 grams twice daily for 3 days, and then once daily for 10 days; or 1 gram three times daily for 14 days
D-mannose comes in capsules and powders. The form you choose mainly depends on your preference.
Many products provide 500-milligram capsules. This means that you may need to take two to four capsules to get the desired dose.
To use D-mannose powder, dissolve it in a glass of water and then drink the mixture. The powder dissolves easily, and the water will have a sweet taste.
D-mannose is effective in preventing UTIs. However, it is a type of sugar and may increase blood sugar level after consumption. Thus, it should be used with caution if you have diabetes.
2) Cranberry Extract
Cranberry juice or extract has been used to prevent UTIs. Researchers showed that cranberry contains a high level of polyphenols that can block the adherence of bacteria to the bladder, thereby reduce UTI infections.
Cranberry juice is a tasty soft drink. You can drink it safely without a health concern if you do not have diabetes. However, if you are diabetic, you will need to consume cranberry juice with caution. Many cranberry juice products claim "no sugar added." But the juice has already a high level of sugar from the berry itself. For those who have diabetes, the cranberry extract pills is a safer alternative.
3) Vitamin D3
Vitamin C (ascorbic acid) was thought to prevent UTIs. However, after repeated studies, researchers could not find evidence that vitamin C works.
The only vitamin that is well documented to boost resistance against UTIs is vitamin D3. First, studies have shown that vitamin D deficiency make women susceptible to recurrent UTIs. Second, vitamin D was found to induce an antimicrobial peptide cathelicidin in the urinary bladder. This peptide in turn can kill the E. coli bacteria to prevent UTIs. Thus, taking vitamin D3 can be a good dietary supplement to prevent chronic recurrent UTIs.
In summary, non-antibiotic methods to prevent recurrent UTIs include behavior changes, like drinking a lot of water and pee immediately after sex, using NeuEve suppositories and balm cream, and taking dietary supplements. Three dietary supplements can be used for preventing chronic UTIs, D-mannose, cranberry juice/extract, and vitamin D3. Combination of these methods was reported to have a synergistic effect against UTIs.
Foods good for strengthening the bladder and pelvic floor muscle
Drink a lot of water, herbal or green tea, not artificially flavored juice or carbonated water. Sufficient hydration, especially in hot weather when you sweat a lot, is necessary to build high urine pressure to flush out bacteria, toxins, and other waste materials from the bladder.
2) High magnesium foods
Magnesium is essential for the pelvic floor muscles and nerves to function properly. Magnesium reduces bladder muscle contractions and helps the bladder empty fully while urinating. It also has a laxative effect for relief of constipation.
Magnesium-rich foods include banana, almonds, avocado, cashews, spinach, pumpkin seeds, soy nuts, cooked black beans, and flaxseeds.
3) Omega-3 fatty acids
Omega-3 fatty acids are anti-inflammatory. They can help lower blood pressure, reduce triglyceride levels, and delay plaque formation in the arteries. They can also reduce any irritations that may occur from other food or drink.
Fish such as salmon, mackerel, oysters, and sardines are good sources of omega-3 fatty acids. Nuts and seeds are also good sources, including flaxseed, chia seeds, soybeans, and walnuts.
4) Fruits with low citric acid
Citric acid can cause bladder irritation. You should avoid citric fruits like oranges, tangerines, lemons, limes, and grapefruits.
Fruits with low citric acid include bananas, figs, avocados, watermelons, and persimmons. Vegetables include kale, carrots, cucumbers, broccoli, and sweet potatoes.
5) Foods with high vitamin D
Vitamin D plays a role in muscle strength, function, and muscle mass. Vitamin D receptors are located in the muscles, and so can directly affect the pelvic floor muscles. Insufficient vitamin D intake has been linked to reduced muscle strength and loss of muscle mass.
To boost your vitamin D level, it is recommended to take vitamin D3 supplements and eat vitamin D rich foods like eggs and fish.
6) Avoid foods that weaken the pelvic floor
These foods weakens the pelvic floor: coffee, caffeinated drinks, carbonated beverages, sugars, artificial sweeteners, alcohol, and spicy foods.
Note: We do not sell these supplements. We recommend them for your own health benefit.
Disclaimer: This article is for information purposes only. It is about natural products, nutrients, and/or methods for managing vaginal aging-related discomfort (not a true infection or disease). It is not medical advice for the treatment of any diseases.