Cranberry juice versus your female-focused urologist in the Park City area for urinary tract infections
Urinary tract infections, (UTIS) also commonly referred to as bladder infections, are no secret to most women. Most women, at some point in time, have the unfortunate experience of a urinary tract infection. Some, sadly, seem to develop this type of infection with great regularity.
One source of urinary tract infections is the E. coli bacterium, which naturally lives in the gut and anus. This type of bacteria not only lives in close proximity to the entry point of the urinary tract, but it also has the precise structure that enables individual microbes to adhere to the walls of the bladder and other tissues. E. coli hold on to tissues with tiny projections much like fingers. Through these fimbrae, E. coli are able to remain in the urinary tract even throughout urination.
For decades, there has been a common belief that cranberry juice can cure an active urinary tract infection. Indeed, in laboratory testing, cranberry juice did limit the stickiness of E. coli. These results, however, were obtained by applying cranberry juice directly on bacterium in a Petri dish. Testing did not account for digestion and the natural acidic environment in the bladder. Therefore, the true effectiveness of cranberry juice in keeping a female from a visit to her urologist in the Park City area is not necessarily a given.
The pro’s and con’s of cranberry juice for urinary tract infections
Several studies have shown the positive effects of cranberry juice as a preventive measure against urinary tract infection. This is great news for women who are prone to this type of infection. The benefit of juice-drinking lies in the antioxidants contained within this ripe fruit. As the study in the Petri dish suggests, antioxidants within cranberries make E. coli microbes less likely to stick to the bladder wall. Subsequent studies have shown a marked decrease in the development of urinary tract infections in women who regularly drink cranberry juice or take cranberry tablets.
What studies further confirm, however, is that cranberry juice itself is ineffective at eliminating bacteria that have already adhered themselves to the bladder wall. What this means is that, once symptoms like urge and discomfort have developed, the most formidable opponent to sticky bacteria is antibiotics.
At Partners in Pelvic Health North Shore Urogynecology, we help patients from Woodstock, Lake Forest, Barrington, Highland Park, Libertyville, and other communities manage their unique health concerns. For your appointment, contact one of our welcoming offices today.