Are you experiencing discomfort or pain while passing urine? Do you feel a frequent urge to pee? This might be due to a Urinary tract health concern.
Urinary tract issues have been around for a long time. According to the epidemiological study, they are the most commonly reported outpatient infections occurring to more than 50% of women at least once in their lifetime.
The symptoms may vary, while one experiences slight burning during urinating or frequent, foul-smelling urine. The other person might end up in the ER with severe flank pain and fever.
Well, we are lucky enough to be blessed with herbs and natural supplements for urinary tract health. Before we need to move towards antibiotics or other allopathic treatments, herbal medicine has been successful in playing an active role.
They are rich in different compounds and chemicals that kill bacteria, fungi, and viruses responsible for causing urinary tract infections.
Before discussing the treatment supplements and remedies, let’s first have a look over what typically causes urinary tract problems and what issues you might face if you have it.
What Urinary Tract Problems Feel Like?
- A constant urge to urinate
- Burning and itching sensation while peeing
- Cloudy and frothy urine
- Foul-smelling urine
- Weak stream
- Pain in flank or pelvic region
- Incomplete emptying
- The appearance of blood in the urine
- Constant dribbling of urine
What Causes Urinary Tract Problems?
Being the second most commonly occurring infection, UTI comes about when bacteria like E.coli colonize your urinary tract. Women are the usually infected population because they have a shorter urinary tract that is more at risk. There are multiple reasons behind it, including;
- Poor hygiene
- A weakened immune system, such as in diabetes
- Sexual hyperactivity
- Bowel disturbance
- Catheter use
- Stones in the urinary tract blocks the normal flow.
- Menopause causes reduced estrogen in the body.
- Use of tampon and pads for a longer time
- Abnormal urinary tract such as congenital problems
- Immobility or being bedridden
- Not urinating for long periods.
- Excessive use of antibiotics
- Birth controls and certain contraceptives
Are Herbs Better Than Antibiotics?
You need to be convinced of the fact that herbs and natural supplements at times have proved to be beneficial in treating different medical conditions. This topic has been debated for long and different researches have been carried out to study the effects of herbs on our body.
Herbal medicine is widely used by traditional people and is also an important part of a few cultures. They are part of the lifestyle and are used in daily life by certain populations. They might not replace antibiotics but have given promising results over curing or reducing the risk of systemic infections.
The effects of herbs and natural supplements for urinary tract health are under research, and rigorous studies are conducted to explore new therapeutic methods. With emerging resistance and increased toxicity of drugs, herbs and natural supplements have become an alternative to antibiotics.
12 Best Herbs And Natural Supplements For Urinary Tract Health
Listed below are some of the best herbs and supplements for urinary tract health that we can easily use in our daily life.
Cranberry is the most widely used natural supplement. It contains bioactive chemicals like D-mannose, anthocyanins, etc., which have the anti-oxidizing ability that prevents the bacteria from attaching to the urinary tract, thus reducing infection.
A controlled study suggested that cranberry has been effective in reducing the incidence of urinary tract problems if used regularly.
The trials carried out by the National Center for Biotechnology Information further confirmed that drinking cranberry juice greatly reduced the population having UTI.
2. Green Tea
Green tea is a supplement for urinary tract health that originates from the plant Camellia sinensis and is a rich source of polyphenols. Pharmacists recommend this plant chemical as an anti-inflammatory agent. It is also effective against microbes and bacteria commonly causing UTI.
With researches and experiments carried out in the lab, green tea has shown potential against multiple strains of E.coli.
Epigallocatechin (ECG) is the major compound in green tea that is excreted out in the urine. After it was tested, it proved to fight the bacteria found along the urinary tract.
3. Bearberry Leaf
Bearberry is also known as Uva Ursi, is commonly found growing in parts of North America, Asia, and Europe. Traditional people use bearberry leaves by mixing them with dandelion leaves for treating the burning sensation while passing urine. The core compound found in this leaf is Arbutin that has antibacterial and antiseptic properties.
The European Medicine Agency concluded on how bearberry treats urinary tract symptoms and the urgency and frequency of urinating.
In a double-blind study conducted on 57 women, Uva Ursi reduced the episodes of recurrence of UTI.
Horsetail is not only used to treat urinary tract infections but also urinary incontinence and bladder stones. It is rich in minerals like silica that soothes the mucous membrane and has diuretic effects.
The British Herbal Medicine Association also talks about the potential benefits of horsetail and its healing properties.
An analysis showed that the ethanolic extract was more effective than the aqueous extract when it was compared with control samples.
Garlic is one such supplement for urinary tract health that is a part of our daily life since always; it is used in both medicine and our cuisines. The core compound, Allicin, has antibacterial and antifungal properties that kill the bacteria and maintain a healthy urinary tract. Garlic exhibits its properties when eaten raw as well as when cooked with food.
A publication by the Birla Institute of Technology and Sciences, India, evaluated garlic’s effectiveness against a vast range of bacteria strains.
In research on aqueous garlic extract, the results confirmed the potential of garlic as an alternative for treating urinary tract problems.
Parsley is a naturally occurring diuretic that removes the bacteria from the urinary tract by flushing it out. It speeds up the process of repair and prevents the itching sensation when passing urine. Drinking parsley tea on a daily basis prevents the formation of kidney stones.
Sufficient evidence has been provided that shows how parsley increases the quantity of urine that flushes the tract and maintains healthy flora.
Iraqi patients with UTI were treated with parsley, and the corresponding effects were recorded, which concluded it as a potentially beneficial agent.
Cornsilk has a mucilaginous or demulcent quality that soothes the mucous membrane of the urinary tract. It serves as an antiseptic as well as a diuretic that removes all the harmful microbes that might cause UTI. It reduces the inflammation of the bladder and makes urination a pain-free process.
Cornsilk has been used in folk medicine by traditional people. It is loaded with beneficial effects of flavonoids and terpenoids, which are reviewed by researchers for further application of cornsilk in healthcare.
Goldenseal is another supplement for urinary tract health rich in hydrastine and berberine-like compounds that have antibacterial and anti-inflammatory properties. It protects the urinary tract by preventing the colonization of E.coli and yeast that allows easy elimination.
The goodness of goldenseal lies in the alkaloid, berberine which has been thoroughly studied for its antibacterial activity.
9. Chamomile Tea
Chamomile tea serves as one of the best options for someone who has inflammation in their bladder or the urinary tract. It has a soothing effect that brings down the irritation and reduces the burning sensation.
It acts as a diuretic as well, and having the tea on a regular basis prevents the growth of bacteria. Furthermore, it flushes the microbes lining the urinary tract, which reduces the risk of having an infection.
Chamomile tea has been used by ancient people and is now under highlight for the potential to treat multiple medical conditions along with UTI.
The entire plant of dandelion is effective in one way or another. It increases the quantity of urine, washes out bacteria, reduces inflammation, and decreases swelling caused by the infection. The plant can either be eaten fresh or used in salad. It is helpful in providing relief from the painful and irritating symptoms.
In order to limit the use of antibiotics, dandelion is emerging as an effective therapeutic agent and is under investigation for developmental purposes.
While volunteers were observed, all showed increases in the frequency of urination in two out of the three doses they were given.
Marshmallow, otherwise known as Althaea Officinalis, is a soothing herb that has anti-inflammatory effects. It is known for reducing swelling and irritation of the urinary tract lining. The anti-microbial quality fights the symptoms of UTI.
The antibacterial activity of Marshmallow was tested by using it for wound healing, and promising results were obtained.
12. Dark And Leafy Vegetables
Vegetables like broccoli, spinach, kale, etc., are associated with reduced risk and severity of UTI symptoms. There are rich in fiber and Vitamin C, which has a healing effect on an irritated bladder. They make your urine more acidic that does not let the bacteria in your urinary tract survive.
A cohort study was conducted that carried experiments, testing the effect of different fruits and vegetables on your urinary tract. Leafy vegetables were strongly associated with improved results.
Best Supplements For Urinary Tract Health
After a detailed study and observation of the herbs and natural supplements for urinary tract health, it has been suggested that products like BeHerbal’s Advanced Prostate Support serve as one of the excellent formulas for UTI. It contains over 29 potential herbs and their extracts.
They all come together to effectively help you fight urinary tract problems along with healthy prostate functioning. It has compounds like Saw Palmetto, Zinc, and Pumpkin Seeds that prevent bladder incontinence and promote normal urine flow.
It is completely drug-free, and 3rd party certified, making it one of the best available dietary supplements for urinary tract health that is recommended by physicians.
Despite being a common infection, there are various ways one can adopt that reduces the risk of infection and helps alleviate its symptoms.
- Keep yourself hydrated. It is highly essential to have a minimum of 8-9 glasses of water every day, along with herbal teas. This helps you in having a good urine flow. Also, try reducing the intake of caffeine and carbonated drinks.
- Do not stop yourself from peeing. Whenever you have the urge of urinating, never hold it back.
- Maintain proper hygiene by cleaning yourself with water every time you use the washroom or have sex.
- Wear loose and cotton undergarments as they reduce sweat and moisture, thus the occurrence of bacteria.
- Avoid using a single pad or tampon for more than 5 hours as it may allow the growth of bacteria.
- Choose a suitable birth control method by talking to your doctor if you are at risk or have UTI.
- Don’t use scented and irritating products.
- Using heating pads or a hot towel can help in reducing pain in the pelvic and flank area.
- Have food like pears, banana, potatoes, and lean proteins that do not irritate your bladder.
- Take Vitamin C on a regular basis as it strengthens your immune system and helps fight the infection.
Urinary tract health is as important as any other thing in your body for the normal functioning of daily life. Urinary tract infections not only can hinder your smooth life but also interrupt your mental peace.
All the above-listed herbs and natural supplements for urinary tract health will help you reduce UTI risk and fight the symptoms if you are suffering from any infection of the urinary tract. All of them have been proved through studies to treat different conditions and maintain a healthy urinary tract effectively.
However, it is necessary for you to discuss with your physician before starting any supplement if you have any allergies or are suffering from any medical condition.
- Hill, A. (2020, May 18). 8 Herbs and Natural Supplements for UTIs. Healthline. https://www.healthline.com/nutrition/herbs-for-uti.
- Jain, R., Kosta, S., & Tiwari, A. (2010). Ayurveda and urinary tract infections. Journal of young pharmacists. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2964762/
- Das S. (2020). Natural therapeutics for urinary tract infections-a review. Future journal of pharmaceutical sciences. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7498302/
- Reis, M. (2020, July 9). 6 best herbal teas for urinary tract infection (UTI). https://www.tuasaude.com/en/teas-for-uti/.
- MediLexicon International. Urinary tract infections (UTIs): 10 home remedies. Medical News Today. https://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/318048#vitamin-c.