Urinary Tract Health
I would like to take a moment to chat about a subject that gets brought up in my Practice Space often. It is also something that I have dealt with a great deal in my own personal journey. I have found that prevention is often the way to go when dealing with the health of our urinary tract system.
Our urinary system is comprised of two kidneys, the bladder, two sphincter muscles, nerves in the bladder, urethra and two ureters (adjacent tubes). Urine (waste product) produced in the kidneys passes through the ureters to the bladder where is held until vacated.
The kidneys have four major jobs:
Maintain the bodies proper amounts of alkali and acid. This balance is essential to our lives and the quality of our lives.
Regulate water balance. If that is off, one can suffer from a variety of problems.
Regulate hormone and enzyme levels. The also assist in maintaining blood pressure.
They also regulate emotion. Depending on water levels, certain feelings and behaviors are present.
Thankfully there are many preventative measures and do’s and don’ts to help us maintain our urinary health.
Some easy measures in prevention are as follows:
Don’t douche. This can upset the vaginas natural balance.
Drink at least 8 glasses of water per day.
Urinate when you feel the need to go. When you allow the urine to sit in the kidneys/bladder, bacteria can build up.
Shower if you can, more often than bathing. IF you are taking a bath, avoid bubble baths, synthetic bath bombs, et.
Wash and urinate within 15 mintues of intercourse.
Wear cotton underwear. Cotton allows the pubic area to breathe.
I also like to recommend that if you use tampons or pads, be sure that you are using organic cotton. Some pads and tampons have been leached with chemicals. These go directly into our bodies.
If you are already challenged with a UTI your diet should be bland and nourishing. Some good foods are leafy greens, okra, eggplants, carrots, cheese, and fresh fruits. Blueberries, yogurt with live action cultures, drinking unsweetened cranberry juice, parsley, and dandelion greens are also helpful. Be sure that you rinse your vegetables and fruits with a good organic wash. Lots of fruits and vegetables have pesticides on them and washing them first can be very helpful.
Let’s discuss some herbs that are helpful in maintaining the health of our Urinary Tract System.
Hops (Humulus Lupulus) is one of my favorites. It is a wonderful antiseptic herb and it also brings some pain relief, which is generally much needed with UTI’s.
Uva-ursi (Arctostaphylos uva-ursi) is also one of my favorites. It’s not as well known as hops but it is definitely effective. It has a long history for it’s antiseptic and diuretic properties. Researchers have found that it has the capacity to fight infection, due to the chemicals present, arbutin and hydroquinone.
Dandelion leaf (Taraxacum officinale) is a potent diuretic and works to lessen symptoms. It works to flush the bladder and remove excess fluid buildup.
Plantain (Plantago spp.) is a soothing and healing to the urinary tract. It assists in the restoration and maintenance of healthy epithelial tissue lining of the bladder.
Nettle (Urtica dioica) helps to relieve UTI symptoms by increasing urinary volume and working to flush bacteria out of the urinary tract.
Rosehips (Rose laevigata) are rich in vitamin C. Vitamin C helps change the acidity of urine. This acidity inhibits the proliferation of E. Coli.
Agrimony (Agrimonia eupatoria) shows particular action for the urinary tract, particularly the bladder, urethra and cystic ducts. It is used for inflammation, irritation, burning urine, urethritis, and interstitial cystitis.
Marshmallow (Althea officinalis) contributes soothing support to UTI’s. It is beneficial for the lower UT and works to speed up healing and tissue regeneration while soothing aggravated tissues and membranes.
Corn silk (Zea mays) is a gentle, soothing slightly antiseptic diuretic utilized for inflammation in the UT.
Last but not least, D-Mannose is a type of sugar that’s related to glucose. Although it is not an herb, I love it for urinary tract health. It has an excellent reputation for assisting with UTI issues. I have also had personal success with it as well. It prevents certain types of bacteria from sticking to the walls of the urinary tract.Great Faith Organics has a beautiful organic tea that contains many of the above ingredients. Click the underline link to check out our Urinary Support Tea. It's a great way to nourish and support your Urinary Tract.