Consuming cranberry juice is a treatment strategy for many women who suffer from a urinary tract infection, and new research reveals that consuming cranberry juice as well as cranberry products is effective for preventing a UTI before it starts.
A study investigating the benefits of cranberry juice and its products has established that cranberry juice, as well as cranberry supplements, lower the likelihood of repeat UTIs in women by over 25%, in children by over 50%, and in UTI-susceptible individuals by approximately 53%.
Cranberry juice as well as supplements that typically contain cranberries, which include tablets and capsules, have been promoted as an accessible solution for the infection but a 2012 review with data from 24 studies, revealed no benefit from the cranberry products.
For this updated review, the researchers determined the effectiveness of cranberry products by reviewing 50 more recent studies that included almost 9000 individuals.
UTIs are nasty and very common; approximately a 3rd of women will experience an infection, as will many elderly individuals and also individuals with bladder issues or other disorders.
A persistent untreated UTI can infect the kidneys and result in pain and more complications such as sepsis in severe cases, so the most efficient method for reducing risks is prevention.
The majority of UTIs can be effectively and quickly remedied with antibiotics, with as little as a single dose resolving the issue sometimes. Unfortunately, UTIs continue to come back in some individuals.
Hundreds of years ago, Native Americans reportedly consumed cranberries for bladder issues, which led researchers to explore what component in cranberries that helped.
The studies the researchers looked at included a variety of methods to establish the benefits of cranberry products. Most studies compared the products with a placebo or no UTI treatment and established that consuming cranberries as a juice or in capsule form reduced the number of UTIs in women who had recurrent cases, as well as in children and also in individuals susceptible to UTIs after undergoing medical treatments which include bladder radiotherapy.
It’s also significant that no side effects were reported by most individuals with the most common being tummy pain according to the results. The researchers also didn’t find adequate information to establish if cranberry products are more or less effective in comparison to antibiotics or probiotics for preventing recurrent UTIs.
The results also don’t show any benefit for elderly individuals, pregnant women, or in individuals with bladder emptying issues.
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