in this article:
Urinary infections are the infections caused by the anatomical structures that form the so-called urinary apparatus, namely: kidneys, ureters, bladder and urethra. When defining the various urinary infections, doctors speak of urethritis when urinary infection is limited to urethra, cystitis when the infectious process affects the urinary bladder, when the infection is located in one of the ureter and pyelonephritis when infection is in one of the kidneys.
The urinary tract components most affected are the urethra and the bladder (the most common urinary infection is cystitis); however, although much more rarely, other districts of the urinary tract may also be involved (the abovementioned kidneys and ureters). The main cause of urinary infections is a bacterium that normally lives within the gastrointestinal tract: the known Escherichia coli.
What are kidney infections?
Urinary infections are infections to the components of the urinary system, namely: kidneys, ureter, bladder and urethra. The kidney infection is called pielonephritis; urethra infection is known as urethritis; bladder infection is the so-called cystitis; finally, urethra infection is known as urethritis.
Lower and upper urinary tract infections
In medicine, pyelonephritis and urethritis constitute the so-called upper urinary tract infections; Cystitis and urethritis, on the other hand, represent the so-called lower urinary tract infections.
From a clinical point of view, upper urinary tract infections are more of a concern than inferior urinary tract infections. This is due to possible kidney damage that may result from a kidney or ureter infection.
Urinary infections affect women more frequently (the reasons will be treated in a specific subfamily), especially those aged between 16 and 35; In this regard, some medical-statistical studies have shown that the above-mentioned infections are at least 4 times more frequent in women than those mentioned above, compared to male-sex peers. In men, urinary infections are a fairly rare phenomenon until the middle-advanced age (under 50-60 years); after which they become much more frequent, so as to reach almost the frequency related to the female gender.
In the young population, the infections in question affect at least 10% of individuals; among the children, the most affected are unborn male subjects less than 3 months old, followed by females aged less than one year old.
Among the various types of urinary infection, cystitis is undoubtedly the most common.
In Western countries at least 10% of women develop urinary infections each year; there are at least 40-60% of women in the life of urinary tract infection and only 12% of men.
Kidney infection symptoms
Typical symptoms of a urinary infection are: disorientation, urge to urinate, lower abdominal pain, need to urinate often, bad odor and mucus urine production, and complete bladder failure. Therapy is generally based on antibiotics, whose mode of administration varies depending on the severity of the infection.
Kidneys are two bodies of dark red color that, along with the urinary tract and the bladder, form the urinary tract. The main function is to filter blood, producing urine and managing the hydro-saline balance in the human body. The kidneys are the main organs of the excretory apparatus. In the number of two, they reside in the abdominal cavity, at the sides of the last thoracic vertebrae and the first lumbar vertebrae, are symmetrical and have a shape that resembles that of a bean.
Kidneys are located at the sides of the spine and are held in the abdominal pressure and from a frequent connective tissue called the renal band. Although they maintain their position, they lower and stand up depending on the phases of the breath. Excretory organs of excellence, filter every minute 1200 ml of blood or 1700 liters in a day. Both kidneys have a smooth surface, a convex front face and a slightly curved back, a top rounded pole and a lower pointed bottom, a convex lateral margin, and a hollow medial. Kidneys have depurative function, regulate the body’s water balance, the acid-base and the electrolytic blood composition.
Renal calculations are compact formations that appear as a result of excessive concentration of urine in some substances that are aggregated. They are especially affected in men aged between 30 and 60 years. It is estimated that 5/7% of the population has this disorder, with a peak around 10% in subjects over the age of 50. Renal calculations tend to recur, i.e. to reform. In one patient over 5, in fact, nephrolithiasis reoccurs over the first two years.
When kidney stones are very small, that is, when they have a diameter of 9 mm at most, they are often expelled spontaneously. Bigger kidney stones can cause kidney infections and consequent inflammation.
The urinary tract, on the other hand, forms the so-called urinary tract and has the following structures:
The ureters. In number two, the ducts link the kidneys to the bladder. To avoid misunderstandings, it is stated that each ureter is independent of the other.
The bladder. It is a small muscular cord organ that accumulates urine before urination.
The urethra. It is the tubular channel that connects the bladder to the so-called urinary mucus (or external urethral orifice) and is mainly used for the urine expulsion.
Under the bladder, only in humans, there is another very important organ, connected to the urinary tract but not from the urinary tract: the prostate. The prostate has the function of producing and emitting seminal fluid.
Kidney infection causes
What are the most common pathogenic agents of urinary infections? Urinary infections acquired in the Community environment are due to: Escherichia coli (or E. coli) bacteria, in 80-85% of cases; The Staphylococcus saprophyticus bacterium, in 5-10% of cases; finally, fungi or a virus, in the percentage remaining.
As for the urinary infections acquired in the healthcare environment, the situation is quite different; in fact, these infections depend on: Escherichia coli, in a 27% of cases; the Klebsiella bacterium, in an 11% of cases; The Pseudomonas bacterium, in another 11% of cases; The fungus Candida albicans, in a 9% of cases; Enterococcus bacterium, in 7% of cases; finally, bacteria and fungi different from the previous ones, in the remaining percentage.
Escherichia coli and urinary infections
Escherichia coli is a bacterium that populates normally and without causing particular problems to the gastrointestinal tract of the human being.
Any problems related to it come about when the gastrointestinal tract moves elsewhere and invades seats does not resemble his presence. This is the case, for example, in urinary infections: in fact, E. coli causes these when, for example, the bacteria from the anus moves to the nearby urethra and hence goes along the other districts of the urinary apparatus.
Urinary infections are common in association with certain pathological conditions such as:
- Diabetes, because it causes immunodexpression;
- Congenital urinary tract malformations;
- Kidney stones and all those pathological conditions that, similarly, block or block the transit of urine (e.g. benign prostatic hypertrophy).
- Some tumors;
- AIDS, because, like diabetes, causes immunodepression;
- Some neurological conditions, such as spinal cord injuries or multiple sclerosis;
- Bladder-urethral reflux;
- Polycyclic kidney;
- Urethral stenosis. It is the abnormal shrinkage of the urethra.
Urinary infections are also a risk of some non-pathological or pathological conditions, such as:
- Being a female;
- Chemotherapy because it causes immunodexpression;
- The use of the catheter for urination (bladder catheterization);
- The intake of corticosteroids;
- Menopause and consequent reduction of estrogen levels;
- Urinary tract surgery;
- The youngest age;
- A particularly intense sexual activity.
To make urinary infections a problem with which many women are often forced to live together are mainly: a short urethra, a particular closeness of the urethra to the anal region (this proximity translates into a greater chance of colonization of the urethral duct by germs with intestinal site), absence of bactericidal prostatic secretions, traumas resulting from sexual intercourse, the use of intrauterine contraceptive devices (spiral or diaphragm), and finally pregnancy (for urinary stasis and anatomic and endocrine changes with which it is associated).
What increases the risk of urinary infection in humans and children? In men, the risk of urinary infections increases over 50 years due to urinary retention due to prostate hypertrophy, a condition typical of older males. In children of both sexes, however, the problem of urinary infections is closely related to the still incomplete immune defenses.
Kidney infection symptoms
In general, all urinary infections – that is, those with bladder and urethra, and those with kidneys and urethers – are responsible for:
- Impressive stimulus to urinate, but poor urination;
- Need to urinate more frequently than usual, sometimes associated with nicturia;
- Pain or sense of burning during urination (disoriasis);
- Complete bladder emptying difficulty;
- Lower abdominal pain;
- Pure urine production, smelly and / or with traces of blood;
- Sense of general malaise and fatigue.
However, unlike what happens in the presence of lower urinary tract infections, upper urinary tract infections almost always add to these symptoms further manifestations, including;
- High fever;
- Tremors and shivers;
- Pain in the hips or back;
- Nausea and vomit;
- Strange sense of restlessness.
Urinary infections cause different symptoms depending on the anatomic district they are concerned about. Below is a brief summary of the symptomatic pictures typical of the different urinary infections.
|Infected part of the urinary tract||Signs and symptoms|
|Kidneys and ureters||Pain in the hips or back|
Tremors and shivers
|Bladder||Feeling of pelvic pressure|
Lower abdominal pain
Disorientation, need to urinate often and suddenly
Blood in the urine
Complete bladder emptying difficulty
Burning sensation during urination
Turbid and smelly urine production
How symptoms can vary in young people and the elderly. In very young and elderly subjects, urinary infections may occur in ways other than what is customary. In infants they may cause: fever, hypothermia (low temperature), malnutrition and jaundice;
In babies it may be due to: vomiting, diarrhea, fever and malnutrition;
In children it can cause: irritability, malnutrition, persistent fever, loss of intestinal control, diarrhea and urinary changes;
In elderly people a kidney infection may be responsible for: fever, hypothermia, loss of appetite, lethargy and confusion.
Sometimes, urinary infections may occur without there being any significant clinical symptoms, that is, they are asymptomatic. Among the various urinary infections, those most frequently lacking in a symptomatic associated disease are urethritis.
How do you notice a urinary infection and when to contact your doctor? In general, detecting an ongoing urinary infection is quite simple. An alarm bell should be triggered whenever such symptoms arise as an impulsive and frequent need to urinate, difficulty in urination and pain during urination. Further concerns should also arise from the presence of: high fever, shivering, lumbar pain, generic fatigue and fatigue (in these cases it is likely that the urinary tract is affected). In the face of all these manifestations, even when they are dim or modest, medical consultation is very important.
If you are not treated properly or in time, urinary infections may cause many complications, including:
- Predisposition to easily develop other infections in the urinary tract;
- Permanent renal damage. It is a possible complication of upper urinary tract infections;
- Urethral stenosis, especially in men;
- In pregnant women, increased risk of premature birth;
For a correct and accurate diagnosis of urinary infections the following procedures are often sufficient: objective examination, history, microscopic examination of urine and urine culture.
If these diagnostic procedures reveal the need to further investigate the situation, an imaging examination (e.g. uro-TAC, magnetic resonance imaging and / or kidney ultrasound) and cystoscopy are useful (if not indispensable). The microscopic examination of the urine may reveal the presence of traces of blood (sometimes visible to the naked eye) or leukocytes. How many bacteria indicate urinary infection? They are indicative of an urinary tract infection exceeding values of 100,000 bacterial colonies per ml of urine.
Care for urinary infections differs according to their cause of origin. If the symptoms are related to an infection not associated with any pathology, the therapy is based solely on the administration of antibiotics (remember that urinary infections are almost always bacterial). Conversely, when infection is determined, for example, by kidney stones or benign prostatic hypertrophy (so there is an associated pathology), therapy should include not only an antibiotic treatment but also a specific treatment against associated pathological condition (causal therapy).
Simple, recurrent and severe infections: how does antibiotic treatment change?
For simpler urinary infections, just a few days (usually a week or so) of oral antibiotic therapy are enough. For recurrent infections, antibiotic treatment involves several months (usually 6, but it is possible even more) for low dose oral administration.
Finally, for serious and acute infections, an intravenous antibiotic treatment implemented in the hospital is indispensable. For painful sensation during urination, doctors may prescribe, in addition to antibiotics, an analgesic (e.g., paracetamol).
The causes for kidney stone formation can be different. Metabolic forms are the most frequent; In these cases, the disorder is due to an abnormality in the metabolism, for example due to hypercalciuria, which is increased amount of calcium present in the urine. Reduced presence of magnesium in the urine and other conditions caused by a deficit in metabolism. There are also known metabolic forms, such as an infection, malformation of the urinary tract, intake of certain drugs, and so on. Finally, there are idiopathic forms, the less common, that is, cases where even accurate searches do not allow to identify the causes of kidney stones.
Often, kidney stones are asymptomatic, and in fact many times the diagnosis occurs by chance during the investigations performed for other reasons. In 20/30% of cases, however, they can manifest themselves through kidney colic, urinary disorders, and urine that is turbid and has a pungent smell.
Under normal conditions, the urine is sterile, as is the entire urinary tract, except for the male part urethra end where there is an exigent (and innocuous) bacterial microflora. Maintaining sterility depends on full emptying and with a certain frequency of bladder. A urinary infection originates when a colony of pathogenic agents – typically bacteria, more rarely mushrooms and viruses – invades the urethra massively, and hence begins to trace back to the bladder and subsequent districts of the apparatus urinary.
Is there a nutrition pattern to save you from kidney stones? The opinions, as often happens when it comes to human health, are quite different and sometimes controversial. There is, for example, a diet regime, the so-called hydroponic diet, which may be able to prevent the formation of not only kidney stones but also all other types of calculations. It consists of drinking a large volume of water daily to allow a good volume of urine in the 24 hours. In a proper hydroponic diet, the amount, mode and type of water should be prescribed by the physician.
There are different types of mineral water. The one recommended in the diet against kidney stones is oligomineral, with low-calcium content. Drinking particularly poor calcium water, i.e. with a concentration lower than 40 mg / l, may not always be appropriate as it could cause a negative calcium balance and hence an increase in the absorption of oxalate into the intestine.
For the same reason, a low-calorie diet is not always advisable and is to be reserved for those patients who have actually highlighted diet-dependent hypercalciuria. In addition, too low calcium coming with nutrition can cause osteoporosis.
Adequate nutrition for those who suffer from kidney stones, but also for those who want to prevent them, is generally poor in sodium and therefore kitchen salt, sausages, preserved and processed foods, and so on. Kidney-friendly nutrition should also provide a normal protein intake, that is, about 0.5 gram per 1 pound of body weight, so as to reduce urinary excretion of calcium, uric acid and oxalate, and increase that of citrate, with a protective effect.
Finally, it must be remembered that fruits and vegetables are rich in oxalate. For obvious reasons, however, it is not advisable to avoid all these foods and even reduce their intake. Pay special attention to spinach, rhubarb and dried fruit. Chocolate is also a high-oxalate food.
Treatments and natural therapies for kidneys
Urine stagnation inside the bladder is an important predisposing factor for urinary infections; for this reason, it is very important that infected individuals drink plenty of water throughout the day (2 to 3 liters are recommended) and consume some vegetable diuretics, such as dandelion, asparagus and fennel.
The best friend of the kidney is elder (Sambucus Nigra L., Ebulus), useful in trigeminal neuralgia, causes abundant sweating, respiratory ailments, also due to cooling, and constipation caused by the use of laxatives. It has a diuretic, anti-venous, and rheumatoid action. It is also a good idea to use medicinal nettle and ursina grapes.
Onion is the most kidney-friendly food as it stimulates bile secretion, has a good antiseptic, anti-rheumatic and diuretic effect, helps in eliminating kidney stones and accentuates cholesterol decrease. All diuretic foods are also useful for kidney health and water retention.
The best diet for kidneys is a balanced vegetarian diet, conducted with great awareness of all aspects of nutritionally adequate nutrition. Nutrition against kidney stones can not be universal, but needs to be tailored to the needs of the individual subject.
As for the urinary tract infections, bacterial growth and development can occur in urethra (urethritis), bladder (cystitis) or kidney (pyelonephritis). Renal calculations are solid and crystalline formations of various sizes due to the precipitation of calcium oxalates, uric acid, cystine and low magnesium ammonium phosphate in the urine.
Cystitis causes, symptoms and home remedies
Cystitis is an annoying inflammation of the bladder mucosa, due to bacterial infections mainly sustained by Escherichia coli. Typical of women, cystitis manifests itself with an urgent need to urinate, often accompanied by bladder tenement, burning during urination, a feeling of incomplete bladder emptying, dysuria and blood in the urine. Sometimes, the clinical picture of the cystitis is completed by fever, moody urine and abdominal cramps.
Urinary infections such as cystitis may be favored by several factors: intake of oral contraceptives, estrogenic deficiency, unprotected sexual intercourse, kidney colic, diabetes and prostate hypertrophy (in humans).
The published material is intended to allow quick access to general advice, suggestions and remedies that doctors and textbooks are used to dispense with the treatment of Cystitis; These instructions should in no way replace the opinion of the treating physician or other healthcare specialists in the patient care sector.
- Drink plenty of liquids, at least 1.5-2 liters per day (hydroponic therapy). This remedy promotes the dilution of bacterial load, ie the elimination of the pathogen in relatively short time
- Ask for medical consultation within the shortest time possible from the manifestation of the very first symptoms of cystitis
- Follow a series of hygienic-behavioral norms to accelerate healing
- During the acute phase of the cystitis, it is advisable to acidify the urine with substances such as ammonium chloride, which is not advisable for cystinuria or hyperuricemia
- An effective remedy to relieve pain from cystitis is preparations with such substances as sodium bicarbonate. The alkaline urine also promotes the activation of molecules, which can only be activated in a basic environment.
- Some women find a slight and temporary relief from the pain of the cystitis by taking a hot shower
- Practice regular exercise to boost immune defenses
- Prefering cotton clothing compared to synthetic fibers is a useful remedy to promote perspiration. In particular, it is recommended to wear underwear of cotton
- Careful intimate hygiene, with a movement from the front going backward and not vice-versa. This remedy is essential to avoid transporting bacteria from the rectum to the vagina
- Perform accurate intimate hygiene both before and after sexual intercourse
Do not refrain from taking liquids to avoid urges to urinate: many patients, feeling a strong burn during urination, tend not to take liquids to avoid as much as possible to urinate. This attitude turns out to be totally wrong, as the bacteria, stagnating in the bladder, can create more damage. Abstain from dairy products immediately after the administration of antibiotics like tetracycline: dairy products can inactivate the drug. When you suspect cystitis, it is advisable to contact your doctor immediately to start an antibiotic treatment as soon as possible. Do not allow for a retention of urine: mineralization of rarefaction promotes bacterial proliferation in the context of cystitis. Do not consume unprotected sex with people at risk. In such circumstances, the use of highly reliable barrier contraceptive methods is recommended. Promiscuous use of towels or underwear is strictly prohibited. Additionally, make sure that you do not stay for a long time with the wet suit.
Do not interrupt the antibiotic therapy before the doctor’s appointment. Many patients, in fact, tend to stop the cure as soon as the painful symptoms go away; such an attitude, in addition to the recurrence risk, also increases resistance to antibiotics. Do not use internal absorbents or menstrual cups. In the case of predisposition to urinary infections such as cystitis, it is advisable to use external hygienic absorbents.
Be moderate in your use of intimate gels. An excess of intimate hygiene can increase the risk of such infections as cystitis. Do not apply deodorants or scented vaginal sprays.
- Urine acidifying foods: animal protein foods, cereals, plums and blueberries
- Yogurt with live lactic ferments or a probiotic in case of prolonged antibiotic therapy (to strengthen immune defenses)
- Eat a lot of fruit and vegetables
- Drink blueberry juice
- Integrate in your diet a supplement of mannose, a substance that can interfere with the adhesion of the microbes responsible for the cystitis, while favoring the elimination
Do not consume foods irritating urinary tract: alcohol, coffee, chocolate, vinegar, hot pepper, spices, seasoned cheeses, sauces. Avoid eating foods that are difficult to digest, such as sour cherries, fries, and fatty foods.
Natural cures and remedies for cystitis
To speed up healing, it is advisable to take herbal teas with active principles extracted from plants with diuretic and / or disinfectant urinary tract:
1. Arctostaphylos uva-ursi (Arctostaphylos urace)
Arctostaphylos Uva-Ursi has disinfectant properties of the urinary tract. This is a remedy extremely useful for cystitis. Urinaline leaves are used in phytotherapy against numerous bacterial strains commonly responsible for urogenital tract infections because it acts both on inflammation and on infection. In fact, the plant is able to determine an antimicrobial action, anti-inflammatory and soothing the continuous stimulation of urination.
Among the various active ingredients that make up its phytocomplex, arbutin is a isoquinolinium glycoside, capable of splitting in contact with glucose and hydroquinone urine. This last process is favored by the urinary alkalinity, so in the case of those bacteria that make the basic environment such as Proteus vulgaris or Klebsiella pneumoniae, the use of arctostaphylos uva-ursi is more than adequate; while in the case of acid urine it is good to alkalinize artificially with sodium bicarbonate.
Arctostaphylos uva-ursi, together with the phenolic heterosides ((6-10%), present in the phytocomplex, performs an antibacterial action, especially against staphylococci and Escherichia coli, responsible for most urinary infections.
Gallic tannins (15-20%) protect the mucous membranes of the urogenital pathways, obstructing the adhesion of the microbes to the epithelium; have astringent properties as they counteract the excessive production of mucus produced by inflammatory tissues. This activity, in particular, is useful in case of diarrhea often associated with the cystitis.
Finally, triterpenes (ursolic acid) and flavonoids (hyperin, isoquercitin) work in synergy with arbutin, using a diuretic and anti-inflammatory action, which is very useful in severe heartburn infections requiring mechanical rinsing of urinary conduits.
Arctostaphylos uva-ursi may be effectively prescribed in case of acute cystitis, chronic cystitis, urethritis, colobacillosis. An interesting indication of use in the geriatric field is prostatic hypertrophy with inflammatory and infectious component and catheter cystitis. The most commonly recommended preparations are infused, decoction or macerated cold. Intake of fluids and the resulting diuretic activity perform a wash action on the urinary tract, enhancing the antimicrobial activity of carbutyl.
For an infusion prepare on arctostaphylos uva-ursi: take 1 tablespoon of arctostaphylos uva-ursi leaves and 1 cup of water. Pour arctostaphylos uva-ursi into boiling water and turn off the fire. Cover and leave in infusion for 10 min. Filter the infusion and drink 4 cups a day away from meals. Mother tincture of arctostaphylos uva-ursi: 80 drops in 1L and 1/2 of mineral water, to be consumed throughout the day, away from meals.
The use of arctostaphylos uva-ursi is not recommended in the event of pregnancy, lactation and kidney failure. Also, do not recommend prolonged use that can cause irritation to the gastric mucosa, nausea and vomiting.
2. Asparagus (Asparagus sativus)
Asparagus has potent diuretic properties. Asparagus contains saponins, polyphenols, and a good percentage of minerals, especially potassium, which are good allies of the heart and muscles in general. They have a good diuretic effect and therefore help to combat water retention. They are low in calories and have a high index of satiety, so they are recommended to those who have weight problems.
Not everyone, however, can take advantage of the properties of asparagus; due to the high intake of uric acid, asparagus may aggravate problems such as cystitis, gout, kidney stones, prostatitis, and some osteoarticular diseases.
3. Equisetum (Equisetum arvense)
Equisetum features diuretic and remineralizing properties. The active ingredients in the equation are silica (10% passes as silicic acid in herbal teas), calcium, magnesium, potassium, saponin (equisetonine), flavonoid glucosides, small amounts of alkaloids and tannins. For the presence of these mineral salts, in a highly available molecular form for our body, equiseto contributes to ‘bone metabolism’ and promotes remineralisation of the osteo-articular system and hard tissues such as nails and hair.
Its intake is therefore indicated in case of nail fragility, hair loss, alopecia, osteoporosis, adolescent skeletal growth, fractures, arthrosis (thanks to the action of both articular cartilage and bone tissue) and Tendons (improves elasticity of the tendons).
Equisetum, or horse tail, is also a diuretic for which it is recommended in the treatment of the elimination of metabolic waste. It is also capillary protector for its astringent action on blood vessels, useful against capillary fragility. The healing property makes it an excellent tissue repairer and therefore is used in the cosmetic field in the preparation of products against stretch marks, wrinkles and cellulite.
4. Nettles (Urtica dioica)
This plant possesses diuretic, anti-inflammatory and remineralizing properties. The large amount of known active ingredients, and others not yet fully studied, make horticulture one of the plants with the greatest number of medicinal properties. The leaves contain chlorophyll in abundance, the green color of the plant world (whose chemical composition is very similar to that of the hemoglobin that reds our blood) which gives the plant a strong antianemic properties. It is used against anemia caused by iron deficiency or blood loss because iron and folic acid, contained therein, stimulate the production of red blood cells.
The plant also possesses vasoconstrictor properties (contractile blood vessels) and hemostatic (firm hemorrhage), so it is especially used in nasal and uterine hemorrhages. It is also useful for women who suffer from abundant menstruation. Nursing is also recommended for convalescence, malnutrition and exhaustion because the leaves are rich in mineral salts, especially silicon, which stimulates the immune system, phosphorus, magnesium, calcium, manganese and potassium; and vitamins A, C and K, which make it remineralizing, reconstituting and toning.
It also has depurative, diuretic and alkalizing action: it is indicated for gout, rheumatoid arthritis, kidney stones, renal and hyperglycaemia and cystitis; and in general when a detoxifying action is required. Nettle has a great ability to alkalize the blood and facilitate the elimination of acid residue in the metabolism, which are closely related to all these diseases.
Good results of its use can be obtained in digestive organ disorders due to its digestive activity, because it contains small amounts of cretin, a hormone produced by some cells of our intestine, which stimulates the secretion of pancreatic juice and the motility of the pancreatic juice. Stomach and gall bladder: the nettle facilitates digestion and improves the ability to assimilate foods. Thanks to the presence of tannins also possesses astringent properties and is therefore used successfully to stop it to stop diarrhea, in the case of colitis or dysentery.
Finally, the nettle has a galactogenic action due to the ability to increase breast milk secretion and is therefore advisable during lactation. For external use it has a softening effect, which is used in the treatment of chronic skin diseases, especially in the case of eczema, skin rash and acne, cleans, regenerates and makes skin more beautiful; it is used against alopecia. The best results are obtained by taking it orally and at the same time by making local applications. Nettle contains histamine (1%) and acetylcholine (0.2% -1%), substances also produced by our organism, which act as nerve impulses transmitters of the neurovegetative system. Internal care can be supplemented with local urticas against inflammatory joint pain.
5. Ortosiphon (Orthosiphon stamineus)
Ortosihpon in cystitis is used for the sake of its diuretic properties. As mentioned, the ortosiphon is a plant with interesting diuretic properties, mainly from the flavonoids contained therein. The essential ortosiphon oil – thanks to its sesquiterpenes content – has, however, proved to possess antibacterial and antiflogistic properties. Orthosiphon is widely used against kidney stones and urinary tract infections. Thanks to the diuretic action the orthosiphon is able to exercise, its use has been officially approved for the treatment of urinary infections and kidney stones. In fact, in order to be more precise, the plant is used to promote diuresis, so that it can take advantage of the dilated power of the urine, thus facilitating a faster resolution of infections affecting the urinary tract and preventing the formation of any kidney stones.
Of course, to treat and prevent the aforementioned disorders, orthosyphon should be used internally. If ortosiphon is taken in the form of a liquid extract (drug ratio / 1: 1 extract, using water as a solvent extraction), it is generally advisable to inject about two grams of product once or twice daily. It is good to remember that to promote the diuretic effect, it is essential to take ortosiphon with abundant amounts of fluids.
When orthosiphon is used for therapeutic purposes, it is essential to use defined and standardized active ingredients (flavonoids) as this only allows you to know the exact amount of pharmacologically active substances you are taking. When using ortosiphon preparations, the doses of the product to be taken may vary depending on the amount of flavonoids contained. This quantity is usually reported directly by the manufacturer on the package or on the package leaflet of the same product, so it is very important to follow the instructions given by the manufacturer. In any case, before taking any form of preparation containing ortosiphon for therapeutic purposes, it is best to contact your doctor beforehand.
In popular medicine – in addition to being used as a useful diuretic remedy to counter urinary tract infections and kidney stones – orthosyphon is also used in the treatment of rheumatism, gout, hematuria and albuminuria. Orthosyphon is also exploited by homeopathic medicine, where it can be found in the form of granules, mother dye and oral drops. In this context the plant is used in case of nephrolithiasis, kidney colic, biliary calculus, cellulite, overweight and obesity.
The amount of homeopathic remedy you can take may vary between one person and another, depending also on the type of disorder you need to treat and depending on the type of homeopathic preparation and dilution that you want to use. Orthosiphon applications for the treatment of the aforesaid disorders are neither approved nor supported by the appropriate experimental tests, or have not been overcome. For this reason, they may be without therapeutic efficacy or even be harmful to health.
Avoid taking ortosiphon and its preparations in case of hypersensitivity and in patients with edema due to renal and / or heart failure. Ortosiphon amplifies the effects diuretic and hypotensive drugs in concomitant use.
6. Artichoke (Cynara scolymus L.)
Artichoke boasts powerful diuretic properties, for which it is used in the treatment of kidney inflammation. Artichokes are a precious source of potassium and iron salts. They contain an active ingredient, the cinnarin, which favors diuresis and bile secretion. Usually the flower and stems are used for food, after eliminating the harder ones outside.
Unwritten liver protectors, artichokes cause an increase in bile flow and are well-known in the diabetic diet. The infusion prepared with artichoke leaves, which can be associated with other herbs, is truly miraculous from the point of view of stimulation of diuresis and elimination of toxins: the taste is very bitter, but the benefit is assured. Artichokes are also among the foods with the highest fiber content, so useful for intestinal regularity.
Artichoke is a food that has a positive effect on the cardiovascular system, as it is a cholesterol-lowering food. Before buying it, make sure it is firm and free of stains. To recognize its freshness, grasp it with index and thumb, pressing: if artichokes oppose resistance and do not flatten, freshness is guaranteed.
7. Fennel (Foeniculum vulgare)
Fennel is yet another plant with diuretic properties, used in kidney infections. It is made up of dried fruits destined for the extraction of essential oil, which is disposed of about 60% in fruits and the remaining in the rays of umbrellas and other green parts of the plant; greenish essence is made up of about 70% by anethole and the remaining part of several other substances. Until now, more than 30 have been identified. If the essential oil is stored for too long periods (2 years), the autoantibodies (which can be used to evaluate the age of the oil) or others with estrogenic properties are derived from the mixture. It is very important to strictly observe the prescribed doses as anethole in high doses causes convulsions.
Fennel, in addition to being rich in vitamins and minerals, is rich in active principles that make it particularly useful for gout, asthenia, appetite, rheumatism, flatulence, vomiting, weak vision. Being rich in flavonoids or phytoestrogens, natural estrogenic substances, fennel has a balancing effect on female hormonal levels, it can favor regularization of the menstrual cycle, latent secretion, and preventing breast cancer. It works on the liver and on detoxification systems by regularizing and improving liver function. It also acts on the nervous system by preventing and / or relieving muscle spasms.
The fruits of the fennel, improperly called seeds, contain volatile oils in oscillating amounts between 0.8 and 4%. Among them, the main constituents are a sweet essential oil, anethole, and a bitter substance, the phenicone. They are attributed to the well-known stimulating effect on the motility of the stomach and intestine (carminative), which makes the fennel seeds particularly useful in the presence of meteorism and flatulence. The same essential oils are also attributable to the increase, for reflective phenomenon, of salivary secretion.
In herbalist science and phyto-pharmacy the fennel is indicated against dyspepsia, heaviness of stomach, flatulence, meteorism, colitis, digestive atonium, cough inflammation of the areas. It also has estrogenic, antifermentative, expectorant, and is useful against menstrual problems.
8. Bermuda grass for kidney inflammation
Bermuda grass is a plant of the family of grasses, also known as wild grain. Bermuda is known above all to be a very weedy herb, able to extract nutrients and oxygen to crops. In fact, however, this plant also has many beneficial qualities and can therefore be used as a natural remedy for various issues. The rhizomes of Bermuda grass have various therapeutic uses, especially for diuretic and purifying effects.
9. Common nettle address renal disorders
Common nettle contains flavonoids, coumarin, phenolic acids, tannins, polysaccharides, minerals (calcium, potassium, iron and silicon) and vitamins A and C. For healing purposes mainly dry leaves and roots are used. Nettle leaves perform a tonic, purifying and diuretic action. They alleviate urinary disorders and joint pains. The nettle juice (easily found at herbalist’s) is also indicated in case of chronic diarrhea, anemia, gout, prostate hypertrophy and abundant menstrual flow. Nutshell is also useful as a remedy for stomach and intestine ulcers.
10. Birch leaves to remedy kidney inflammation
Birch in herbal therapy mainly uses 2 species: Verrucous birch (betulla verrucosa) and hairy birch (betula pubescens). The properties of the birch are enclosed in leaves, bark, lymph and buds. This plant contains flavonoids, essential oils, vitamin C, high concentrations of potassium salts and betulinic acid. The latter, an active ingredient especially found in the bark, has shown in the laboratory antibacterial, anti-inflammatory and antidolourishing properties. Birch to cure the urinary tract. Birch leaves boast great diuretic properties and are used against water retention and to treat kidney stones or urinary tract infections. Several studies have shown the effectiveness of birch as a diuretic. These properties are due to parity with flavonoids and high levels of potassium salts. The increase in potassium / sodium ratio actually stimulates urinary elimination in the body, while vitamin C and betulinic acid prevent the formation of kidney stones. Birch leaves and buds, thanks to anti-inflammatory properties, are used to treat joint pain, rheumatism and gout. Products based on this plant are sold as anti-arthritic.
For a diuretic purpose and for treating urinary tract infections, an infusion should be prepared with a spoon of birch leaves in a cup of boiling water. Drink 2 or 3 cups a day. Gemmodermal is used as a remedy against joint pain, such as digestive and to treat kidney problems. On the market, however, capsules, tablets and cosmetic products can be found with birch derivatives.
11. Purifying herbal tea for kidneys
The kidney-purifying herbal tea is particularly suitable for those with kidney problems (in this case, remember to take it only after consultation with your doctor) or to prevent it from appearing. You will require he following ingredients: 1 ounce Bermuda grass (Cynodon dactylon), 1 ounce common nettle (urtica dioica) and 1 ounce birch leaves. Boil a pot of water; when the water bubbles, turn off the fire and add 1 spoonful of herbal mix; turn off the fire and let it infuse for 10/15 minutes; Pour the infusion into a cup (filtering the herbs) and drink it hot. You can prepare 1 liter to drink during the day. In this case, take 20 grams of the herbal mix in 1 liter of water and proceed as described above.
12. Yoga for kidney infection
There are yoga techniques that strengthen kidneys. An ineffectiveness of the lumbar functionality is frightening in the eastern dimension, the opposite of an exorbitant creative thrust. You need to work on asanas that facilitate the elimination of toxins like the famous Bhujamgàsana or cobra position (which also tones ovaries and uterus) or partial Makiasana or resting crocodile.
In the first case, from the position with your back arched (lying down) with some space between the legs and feet, side chest, lift the body and torso to stretch out the arms, marking a bit on the torso. After a few breaths, go down again to the initial position.
To ‘mimic’ the resting crocodile, from the position with your back arched, stretched and relaxed legs, crossing the arms, rest your hands on your arms and resting your chin at the crossing of the wrists. Keep some breaths in the soft stretching of the lumbar region and in the breathing experience of the elongated area.
13. Blueberry in kidney infection
Blueberry (Vaccinium myrtillus) is a powerful diuretic, antioxidant, urinary tract disinfectant. Blueberry fruits are used as food, in gastronomy and in the liqueur industry. In addition, blueberry is attributed to several properties, such as astringents, antioxidants, vasoprotetters, ipolipidemic, hypoglycemic, platelet, antiseptic and antiviral antiaggregants. It is no surprise, however, that blueberry juice extracts are still present in many medicinal specialties.
Blueberry – more specifically, the extracts obtained from its leaves and fruits – is attributed a great variety of properties. Many of these properties have been confirmed by several studies conducted on this matter, but despite this, plant use has been officially approved only for the treatment of diarrhea and inflammation of the oropharyngeal cavity due to astringent, anti-inflammatory and antiseptic action of which it is equipped.
Blueberry, however, has also been shown to exert a protective action at the level of the endothelium of the blood vessels and the capillaries from the damage of smoke, diabetes and hypertension. More in detail, this activity is carried out by the anthocyanosides contained in the fruit of blueberry, molecules to which, among other things, most of the properties attributed to blueberry are recorded. Indeed, anthocyanosids also reduce platelet aggregation induced by ADP, collagen, PAF and arachidonic acid; they have a strong antioxidant activity; protect the gastric mucosa from inflammatory or irritative stimuli and exert beneficial effects on vision.
In this regard, several studies have been conducted to investigate the action anthocyanidins perform towards vision and it has emerged that these molecules not only improve night vision, but are also capable of generating improvements to the sight of cataract patients or diabetic retinopathy.
The extracts of blueberry leaves, however, in animal studies have shown hypolipidemic and hypoglycemic properties; while in vitro have demonstrated antibacterial activity against different types of microorganisms, including strains of Staphylococcus aureus and Escherichia coli. Thanks to the astringent properties of tannins contained in blueberry leaves and fruits, this plant can be used as a remedy to counteract diarrhea, particularly in case of mild enteritis.
As an indication, in the treatment of this disorder, if blueberry is taken in the form of capsules (standardized to 36% in anthocyanosides), it is advisable to take about 60 to 160 mg of product three times daily.
Thanks to the anti-inflammatory, antioxidant and antiseptic action of blueberry, this plant can be used to treat mild inflammation of the oropharyngeal membrane. To treat these disorders, blueberry is used externally. Generally, it is advisable to rinse with a 10% decoction obtained from crushed blueberry fruits.
When blueberry is used for therapeutic purposes, it is essential to use defined and standardized active ingredients (anthocyanosides expressed as anthocyanidins) since only then can you know the exact amount of pharmacologically active substances you are taking.
When using blueberry preparations, the doses of the product to be taken may vary depending on the amount of anthocyanidine contained. This quantity is usually reported directly by the manufacturer on the package or on the package leaflet of the same product, so it is very important to follow the instructions given by the manufacturer. In any case, before taking any kind of preparation containing blueberry for therapeutic purposes, it is best to contact your doctor beforehand.
Blueberry leaves are internally used in traditional medicine for the treatment of various disorders such as gastrointestinal, kidney and urinary tract disorders, arthritis, gout, and dermatitis. Externally, however, blueberry leaves are used for the treatment of inflammation of the oral mucosa, ocular inflammation, skin disorders and sunburn.
Blueberry fruits are also exploited by popular medicine, where they are used internally as a remedy to improve vision and counteract vomiting and hemorrhoids. Externally, however, blueberry fruits find employment in traditional medicine as a remedy to help heal wounds and cutaneous ulcers.
Blueberry is also used in homeopathic medicine, where it can be found in the form of mother tincture, granules and oral drops. In this context, the plant is used as a remedy against diarrhea, colitis, gastroenteritis of viral origin, hemorrhoids, cystitis and varicose veins. The dose of homeopathic remedy to be taken may vary from one individual to another, depending also on the type of disorder to be treated and the type of homeopathic preparation and dilution that you want to take.
Blueberry applications for the treatment of these disorders are neither approved nor supported by the appropriate experimental tests, or have not been overcome. For this reason, they may be without therapeutic efficacy or even be harmful to health.
Following the administration of blueberry, undesirable effects on the skin, the nervous system and the gastrointestinal tract (such as digestive disorders and nausea due to tannin content) may occur. The use of blueberry at very high doses and for long periods of time can also lead to chronic toxicity. Avoid taking blueberry in the case of known hypersensitivity to this plant.
In addition, the use of blueberry is contraindicated during pregnancy and during lactation.
Blueberry can establish pharmacological interactions with such drugs as: Anticoagulants, low molecular weight heparin, anti-tumor platelets (fruits), as there may be an increased risk of bleeding, oral antidiabetic (leaves) and iron salts (leaves).
Blueberry leaves additionally pose a risk of intoxication (anemia, jaundice and cachexia), so their use for healing is now abandoned. American blueberry juice can be used to prevent recurrent cystitis, but must not be associated with platelet or anticoagulant drugs.
14. Strawberry tree (Arbutus unedo) in cystitis and other kidney infections
Strawberry tree (Arbutus unedo) is a plant known for its disinfectant and anti-inflammatory properties, particularly suitable as a natural remedy against cystitis.
Strawberry tree boasts numerous properties, most of which are attributed to tannins, which make up a rather large amount: in this regard, strawberry tree is exploited in herbal medicine as a disinfectant of the urinary tract. The extract is also characterized by arbutin, a hydroquinone glucoside that is excellently suited to the treatment of cystitis and urinary inflammation in general. In any case, in strawberry tree, the amount of arbutin, compared to that of ursina grain, is significantly lower.
Only recently, some components have been isolated in the strawberry tree: gardenoside iridium and asperulide. The phytonutrient extracted from the strawberry tree provides disinfectant, strongly astringent and diuretic properties (dull). In phytotherapy, the use of strawberry tree as an infusion is recommended in case of intestinal flogosis. Primary tincture is used in prostate and urethral affections: in fact, the strawberry tree mother tincture is able to stop the cascade of events that feed the urethritis, thus promoting the repair of the urethral mucosa.
It is imperative not to exceed the doses: a stubborn use of strawberry trees and products based on it, can cause gastrointestinal damage. As with all herbal products, strawberry tree can also interact with drugs: in this regard, it is good to present the doctor or herbalist what drug medicines are taking.
The chemical analysis of strawberry tree reveals tannins components: arbutin (hydroquinone glucoside), iridoids: gardenoside and asperulide
Strawberry tree medicinal properties scope that of a disinfectant of the urinary tract, a natural remedy against urinary cystitis and inflammation, disinfectant, strongly astringent and diuretic properties. Strawberry tree is recommended for intestinal flogitis. Strawberry tree mother tincture is useful in case of prostate and urethral affections
Strawberry tree contraindications include excessive use of the plant which may result in gastrointestinal damage and possible interactions with drugs.
15. Echinacea (Echinacea purpurea) to remedy kidney infection
Echinacea (Echinacea purpurea) is used in kidney infections for its known disinfectant and immunostimulant properties. Echinacea is a garden plant of the astrope family. This beautiful flower is unpretentious in care and can grow in the garden. Echinacea holds a place of honor in medicine is. Its useful properties are miraculously strong, the plant has established itself as an excellent remedy, cleansing lymphatic system, liver and kidneys.
There are more than 300 drugs containing echinacea in its composition. The plant is used in cosmetology and cooking. Absolutely every part of the flower is used in folk medicine and has a great benefit to the body. Echinacea is a true protection and guardian.
From the flowers you get delicious and fragrant teas. The drink is prepared simply: several florets are poured with boiling water, the infusion is consumed with honey or sugar. spicy, pungent, a bit bitter taste of tea strengthens and increases fatigue after a hard day. The plant has many valuable substances that contribute to the development of protective antibodies to harmful microorganisms and leukocytes.
It has been proven many times that echinacea has an antioxidant effect. Its useful properties help fight infectious and bacterial diseases. Grass not only facilitates the cold, eliminates manifestations, but also shortens the disease’s severity and prevents complications. It helps to protect the skin’s youth and prevents early aging.
Researchers have found that masks and lotions from this plant support the skin’s elasticity, prevent penetration of pathogenic bacteria, relieve acne and pigmentation. Inflammation and acne can also be cured by echinacea. The healing properties are comparable to the drug substance penicillin. The roots of the herb are rich in alkylamides that have a lung depletion effect.
The natural remedy helps to strengthen the immune system due to the content of a number of useful components. It contains tannins, polysaccharides, essential oils, organic and phenolic acids. The most important thing is that there are many polyenes in the grass – substances that kill mold and fungus.
But Echinacea has not only the immunomodulatory effect. Its useful properties are much more different. The herb has a diuretic, antiviral, antibacterial, antiallergic and antimicrobial effect. This fact was confirmed by science and numerous medical research. That is why the plant is widely used in people and traditional drugs.
Even young children from 3 years of age can provide drugs, including echinacea. Useful properties manifest in inflammatory processes, diabetes, bladder disease and blood infection. Ointments, creams and lotions based on herbs are used for psoriasis, burns, eczema, herpes, streptococcal infections and mosquito bites. In the fight against osteomyelitis, polyartritis, prostatitis, female diseases and respiratory diseases, echinacea yields multiple benefits.
Instructions for use are as follows: In the presence of wounds, burns, herpes and other skin diseases, a healing infusion of 600 ml of vodka and 150 grams of rats is done. The mixture lasts for 30 days. You can prepare a mask from leaf of echinacea and apply that compresses to the affected areas.
With bronchitis, trachea, burns and erosion of the cervix, oil will help you: you need 500 grams of fresh crushed roots and 2.5 liters of vegetable oil. The components are combined and infused for 30 days. At the end of the period, the oil is filtered and taken 10 grams 3 times a day. Oil can be rubbed into the skin with inflammation.
Therapeutic lotion for the skin from inflammatory phenomena: mix 25 grams of chamomile, string and echinacea. Shake the herb with alcohol and leave for 2 weeks to brew. Wipe the affected skin with the finished lotion, then rinse with soapy water. Before treatment, be sure to visit the doctor because the medical plant has contraindications: pregnancy, multiple sclerosis, leukemia, allergy, mental instability, tuberculosis.
16. Cranberry, a top remedy for inflamed kidneys and urinary tract
Cranberry is part of the composition of several dietary supplements with indications to promote the proper function of the urinary tract and to prevent any bacterial infections. In these preparations, it can be found either alone or in association with other plants with similar to its own properties.
Cranberry is widely used in phytotherapy to prevent urinary tract infections, although the use of this plant has not been officially approved for any type of therapeutic indication. Nevertheless, there are several studies in support of the antibacterial properties of cranberry. In several controlled studies, in fact, cranberry – in addition to exhibiting strong antioxidant properties – has proved effective in the prevention and treatment of recurrent and chronic urinary tract infections.
In this regard, an interesting meta-analysis was developed in 2004 (Jepson RG, Mihaljevic L, Craig J. Cranberries for preventing urinary tract infections) that investigated the effect of various cranberry preparations on urinary tract infections.
Seven controlled clinical trials were included in the aforementioned meta-analysis: in five of these, the effect of cranberry juice versus placebo was examined; while the other two studied the effect of cranberry in capsules versus placebo. Cranberry products have demonstrated, compared with placebo, that they can significantly reduce the incidence of urinary infections after twelve months. There were no significant differences in efficacy between juice and American red cranberry capsules, and side effects were poor and overlapping with placebo.
The meta-analysis then concluded that both juice and cranberry capsules can be effective in reducing the incidence of urinary infections, although many patients have abandoned the therapy during its course. In addition, it is important to underline the fact that different preparations and doses of cranberry have been used in the different studies. Therefore, it is not entirely clear what is the ideal duration of treatment and what are the best amounts and concentrations to achieve the desired effect.
Regarding the mechanism of action by which American red cranberries exert their antimicrobial action, initially it was hypothesized that this activity was related to the capacity of the plant to acidify the urine, making them less hospitable for bacterial proliferation. Subsequent studies have, however, shown that the main action mechanism is not so much dependent on the ability to acidify the urine, but rather on the ability of the plant to inhibit the adhesion of microorganisms to the cellular membranes of the urinary epithelium.
In particular, an in vitro study has shown that cranberry is able to exert a powerful inhibitory cell adhesion of Escherichia coli fimbriate (one of the most common etiologic agents of urinary infections involved in about 80% of cases) and other gram-negative pathogens (such as, for example, Proteus mirabilis and Pseudomonas aeruginosa) that infect the urinary tract.
Such activity appears to be due to proanthocyanidins, polyphenols that selectively inhibit bacterial adesines, thereby reducing adherence to the uroepithelial cells of the host and favoring urine elimination. The proanthocyanidins most active in this sense appear to be those of type A which, in fact, are the majority in the ‘phyto-complexed American cranberry.
However, cranberry does not seem to be effective in releasing bacteria that have already adhered to urinary epithelial cells. Its effectiveness, therefore, would appear to be greater in preventative terms. The anti-adhesive activity of cranberry juice can also be useful in preventing the adhesion to the teeth of oral flora bacteria involved in the formation and stability of the dental plaque; analogous to Helicobacter pylori, an etiologic agent of many cases of peptic ulcer.
Cranberry, too, is rich in monomeric and polymeric phenolic compounds that perform a protective action against free radicals, protecting them from oxidative damage, with a beneficial and protective effect even at the cardiovascular level.
Cranberry has not been approved for any therapeutic use. Nevertheless, its use to prevent urinary tract infections is widespread, even in the light of the results obtained from the various studies conducted on this matter.
It is always advisable to avoid self-therapy and to be followed by a physician; especially in the light of the fact that this use of cranberry did not get official approval. In addition, neglected urinary tract infections may degenerate into severe kidney infections.
Remember that in kidney infection brought on by Escherichia coli, pilus or fimbriaes can be compared to the tentacles of a raindrop, while the adepts to the suction cups distributed on their surface. Adhesions are located in pilus present on the bacterial surface and are able to adhere to specific monosaccharide and / or polysaccharide receptors located on the surface of the bladder epithelial cells. In this way, the bacterium completes the adhesion phase, neutralizing the diluted urine (one of the natural defense mechanisms against urinary infections).
E. coli has two types of morphologically similar adesine but bind to two different receptors:
Type 1 pilus – expressed by both uropathogenic and non-uropathogenic strains – have D-mannose (mannosio-sensitive) receptors. Escherichia coli and PacLa urinary mucosa is able to actively secrete glycoproteins with mannose residues, which are enthusiastically bound to type I piles by occupying the binding sites for uroepielial cells. In this way, mannose counteracts the onset of the pathogen and promotes urinary elimination. P-fimbries expressed only by uropathogenic strains bind to a polysaccharide receptor (manno-resistant).
American red cranberries PACs show very strong inhibitory activity against ‘manno-resitant’ adenyms (fimbrie-P). For this reason mannose and cranberry are often associated with natural supplements and remedies to combat urinary infections.
Cranberry was used in the past by Indians in both the common diet and as a medication for treating kidney stones and other urinary problems. The sailors, however, used it to prevent scurvy, due to its vitamin C content. In addition, cranberry has been used in traditional medicine for the treatment of type 2 diabetes and chronic fatigue syndrome, as well as being used as a diuretic, antiseptic, antipyretic and even anticancer drug remedy.
At present, cranberry is not used in homeopathic medicine. Cranberry applications for the treatment of the aforementioned disorders are neither approved nor supported by the appropriate experimental tests or have not been overcome. For this reason, they may be without therapeutic efficacy or even be harmful to health.
For the prevention of urinary tract infections, it is usually advisable to intake 500-750 ml of cranberry juice per day, to be administered in three divided doses. However, it is good to remember that the amount of juice to be taken depends on its concentration. For example, in the case of pure juice – which should be diluted in water beforehand – it is usually advisable to take 80-160 ml of product per day.
In children the usual dose of juice (not pure) is reduced to 18-25 mg / kg body weight per day. For the juice, the constituents of reference for the quality of the finished product can be considered as proanthocyanidins of type A, whose concentration in commercial products is about 1.2 to 1.4%. Instead, the dry extract available on the market is generally titrated to 15% of polyphenols. It is recommended to take a capsule (300 mg) 2-3 times daily, away from meals and with water.
Cranberry is usually well tolerated. However, very high doses – for example 3-4 liters of juice per day – can cause gastrointestinal disorders and diarrhea. Consumption of more than one liter of juice per day, taken for prolonged periods, may increase the risk of uric acid kidney stones (for urinary acidifying action).
Avoid taking cranberry in case of known hypersensitivity to one or more components in case of allergy to acetylsalicylic acid and in patients with atrophic gastritis, hypocloriduria, kidney stones and diabetes (in the latter case, use of cranberry is contraindicated only if the preparations containing it and that they are to be used are sweetened with sugar). In addition, due to the risk of uric acid kidney stones, the use of American red cranberry is also contraindicated in patients with hyperuricosuria.
Cranberry or its preparations may cause pharmacological interactions with such drugs as:
Warfarin – since concomitant administration of red cranberry in America may enhance the anticoagulant effect of the drug itself. The interaction between cranberry juice and warfarin is biologically plausible because warfarin is metabolised by cytochrome P450 (CYP2C9) and cranberry juice contains flavonoids that inhibit CYP enzymes. Although there is a lack of conclusive data, however, vigilance is advised in the simultaneous administration of cranberry and warfarin. H2 receptor antagonists and proton pump inhibitors, as concomitant intake of the plant may reduce its therapeutic efficacy.
Prognosis and prevention
In women affected by recurrent urinary infections, it is very important to respect the rules of intimate hygiene and the adoption of the behaviours. If the therapy is adequate, timely, and implemented in the right way, urinary infections generally have good prognosis. Conversely, they may result in complications, sometimes even very serious.
Some of the main medical advice to prevent urinary tract infections are:
- Emptying the bladder completely, especially after sexual intercourse,
- Drinking a lot of water,
- Adopting a diet rich in fiber and poor in animal fat and protein,
- Trying contraceptive methods other than the spiral or diaphragm,
- Providing proper intimate hygiene,
- Avoiding potentially irritating intimate products and prefer cotton underwear.
- Always wash your hands thoroughly before touching the genitals to reduce the risk of infection
- Carry with you disinfectant wipes or specific liquid formulations (e.g. amuchin)
- Women suffering from vaginal infections and vaginal inflammation (eg vaginitis, vaginosis, etc.) and urinary tract should avoid using the diaphragm or cervical cap as a high-quality contraceptive method
- Integrating vitamin C nutrition is useful for acidifying urine and preventing urinary tract infections (including cystitis). Consult your doctor
- Pay particular attention to a proper intestinal fungus – especially during menstruation and after sexual intercourse – it can prevent recurrence of cystitis.