This blog is dedicated to WOMEN...all about their experiences..their health, their sexual problems, their role as a wife, a mother, a daughter. Sometimes this would include travels made by the author and other medically related posts that is related to being a woman.
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Saturday, August 13, 2011
Cranberry Juice and Coconut Water for Treatment of UTI
When a patient comes to my clinic I usually requests for a urinalysis and part of my treatment aside from prescribing antibiotics is patient education regarding supplementary treatments.
It is important that patient have adequate water intake. Drinking 8-10 glasses of water a day is mandatory for me. It helps dilute the urine. A concentrated urine is a risk for bacterial overgrowth. If the patient has extra budget for Cranberry Juice then so much better. Cranberry Juice has been proven to treat UTI based on a letter published in the New England Journal of Medicine (NEJM, October 8, 1998, Vol. 339, No. 13) mentioning a 1994 research study which validated the claim that cranberry juice prevents UTI's, and clarified that it is not because of the acidic nature of the cranberry juice, nor because of the Vitamin C content. It is in fact due to specific compounds called condensed tannin (specifically proanthocyanidins) in cranberries and other vaccinium fruit species which prevent the attachment of P-Fimbriated E.Coli to the walls of the urinary tract. P-Fimbriated E. Coli bacteria is a major culprit in UTI's.
There are many bacteria that causes UTI. Therefore if your UTI is not cured by drinking cranberry juice then most probably your infection is due to other bacteria causing UTI like Proteus, etc. You will only know the kind of bacteria if your doctor requests for a Urine Culture. This is the reason why even though Cranberry is beneficial to UTI caused by E. Coli it is still important that one sees his/her doctor for proper management and this is also the reason why I only use Cranberry as a supplement to medical treatment of moderate to severe UTI's.
Most of my patients prefer coconut water because it is more refreshing and it taste better than cranberry juice.
Contrary to the effect of cranberry juice, coconut water is not specific to E.Coli. It doesn't act like cranberry preventing attachment of the bacteria to the walls of the urinary tract. The effect of the coconut water is more of a diuretic. Therefore, all UTI's can respond to coconut water therapy since its effect is more general.
Do not try to self medicate, ask the help of a physician. That way you will not waste on medicines or supplements that are not necessary
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