Urinary tract infection or UTI is one of the most common health problems faced by people today. This painful infection is 10 times more prevalent in women than in men, with almost 50% of females experiencing this condition at least once during their lifetime. About 30% to 40% of UTIs recur within 6 months after the initial episode. When UTIs do recur, it is often because the treatments used to suppress bacteria seem to work at first, but they do not produce a lasting cure. UTIs can also recur if a woman is infected by different bacteria. UTIs can also recur when the bacteria has become resistant to the antibiotics prescribed.
Symptoms of UTIs include:
- Pain or burning during urination
- The need to urinate more often than usual
- A feeling of urgency during urination
- Blood or pus in the urine
- Cramps or pain in the lower abdomen
- Chills or fever (fever may be the only symptom in infants and children)
- Strong smelling urine
- Pain during sexual intercourse
- Nausea, vomiting, and malaise
- Sore vagina
There are many approaches to maintaining the health of the urinary tract that include diet, exercise and herbal supplementation. Green tea is one supplement that has some scientific backing in helping the health of the urinary tract. Certain herbs are purported to help with UTIs, including green tea.
Numerous studies, including one carried out by the US National Library of Medicine have shown that green tea has antimicrobial effect on E. coli bacteria that cause UTIs. The data also adds to the current information on the potential health benefits of green tea.
To prevent UTI, drink two or three cups of tea daily. Green tea contains certain antioxidants that one recent study found can reduce bladder inflammation. Here are some more health benefits of green tea.
Other natural remedies include coconut water, D-Mannose, Chinese herbs for treating UTI (this can be purchased from Chinese medicine halls), boiled barley water and drinking lots of clear fluids. Stay away from acidic fruits and food, spicy foods, alcohol, coffee, citrus fruits, fizzy drinks / sodas, artificial sweeteners, white flour products and sugary foods.
If you think you are suffering from a urinary tract infection, see your doctor immediately, as antibiotics may be necessary. Though green tea may be helpful in preventing UTIs and protecting the urinary tract, it’s not a cure.