Best Foods To Lower The Risk Of Urinary Tract Infection

We all get a slight itch downstairs on occasion, such as after shaving, an allergic reaction to a perfume or certain material in our underwear. However, if your itch persists and is accompanied by a burning sensation during urination, then you may have a Urinary Tract Infection (UTI).

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If you’ve recently been diagnosed with a Urinary Tract Infection, you’re far from alone. Urinary Tract Infections are by far one of the most common infections worldwide, affecting more than 150 million people annually. UTIs are caused by an overgrowth of certain undesirable bacteria, such as E. Coli. The causes of the overgrowth vary greatly- sometimes it’s a negative side effect of needing to take antibiotics to treat a separate infection or health condition, which also kills too much of the good bacteria. Other times it’s due to an unhealthy lifestyle, poor diet, or a lack of good personal hygiene habits. Both men and women of all ages can get a UTI, but it’s way more rampant among women, due to the more vulnerable anatomy of the vagina. Other symptoms include pelvic pain, cloudy and foul smelling urine, a frequent urgency to urinate, and difficulty emptying your bladder.

Luckily though, if the UTI is treated properly before it has a chance to spread to your kidneys, UTI’s are easy to treat and are not serious or life threatening. If you wish to reduce your risk of getting a UTI from the get go, there are several foods that can be very helpful and beneficial. Listed below are some of the best foods to help keep those pesky UTI’s at bay.


Probiotic Yogurt And Kefir

Probiotic yogurt is, hands down, one of the most effective natural remedies for a Urinary Tract Infection. These probiotics, such as bifidus, will help keep a normal and healthy balance of good bacteria in your body, and significantly reduce your risk of developing a Urinary Tract Infection. You can easily find many different kinds of probiotic yogurt at your local supermarket.

Alternatively, Kefir, a beverage made from fermented milk, is also very rich in probiotics. Studies suggest probiotics not only help protect against Urinary Tract Infections and prevent their recurrence; they’ve also been shown to reduce inflammation and support the immune system’s ability to fight infections. Some other good sources of natural probiotics that you can try include sauerkraut and kimchi.

Fresh Broccoli

Broccoli is rich in vitamin C, which helps make the urine more acidic and keeps the bad bacteria under control. In one study that consisted of pregnant women, the findings suggest that those who took vitamin C had a significantly lower risk of developing a Urinary Tract Infection. Vitamin C is also very well known to aid immune function overall and boosts the body’s resistance to infection.

If you’re not much of a broccoli fan, you can choose from some other vitamin C rich foods, such as bell peppers, leafy greens, strawberries, brussels sprouts and oranges.

Unsweetened Cranberry Juice

Cranberry juice can help prevent Urinary Tract Infections by keeping bacteria from sticking to the lining of the urinary tract. Though research is mixed, many studies show cranberry juice can decrease the recurrence of Urinary Tract Infections. For example, a recent meta-analysis of seven clinical trials involving healthy women found that cranberries reduced the risk of developing a Urinary Tract Infection by 26%.

Because most cranberry juice drinks are loaded with sugar, stick to cranberry concentrates and mix them with water, or simply use the whole fruit however you wish.


Cinnamon has long been used for its antibacterial properties. It’s rich in compounds that reduce inflammation and hamper the growth of bad bacteria and other pathogens. Some studies show that cinnamon compounds prevent the colonization of E. coli in the bladder and urethra, which is the bacteria responsible for most UTIs. Better yet, it may also ease some of the discomfort associated with UTIs, thanks to its anti-inflammatory qualities.

Fresh Garlic Cloves

Garlic is an excellent source of allicin and other compounds that have antibacterial and antimicrobial activities, which enhance immune function. It has been shown to protect against a variety of bacteria, including E. coli, and studies suggest it can be an effective treatment for recurring UTIs. In one study, garlic extract had more antibacterial activity against UTI pathogens than commonly prescribed antibiotic drugs. Because allicin is easily damaged by heat, raw garlic is the most effective.


Papaya, like broccoli, is loaded with vitamin C. This supports immune function and increases the acidity of urine, which fights off bad bacterial growth.

It’s also rich in carotenoids like beta-carotene and lycopene, which are antioxidants with powerful immune-boosting properties. Some studies show carotenoids from papaya are three times higher than carotenoids from carrots or tomatoes. Sweet potatoes, mangos and leafy greens are also great sources of carotenoids.

Final Thoughts

It’s important to note that this article, and all health related articles, are never a replacement for professional medical advice and diagnosis.

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