Let’s Be Real: How Much Does Cranberry Juice Really Help UTIs?

Updated on September 6, 2018

One of the most common home remedies for a urinary tract infection is cranberry juice. Cranberries are filled with antioxidants and vitamins. Cranberry juice can be quite good for your health, in small doses, but it does have high amounts of sugar and is very acidic. It can bother your stomach. But can it prevent or cure a UTI?

Do Cranberries Prevent UTIs?

Cranberries are thought to prevent infections from forming because of an active ingredient A-type proanthocyanidins (PACs). Cranberry juice contains antioxidants that stop bacteria from sticking to your urinary tract wall. Although some women swear by cranberry juice, controlled research does not support the theories. It’s really unclear whether cranberry juice will prevent a UTI.

The American Medical Association does not recommend cranberry juice for prevention. A UTI prevention drink may reduce the number of recurring infections. Staying hydrated with water can also help. Increasing your urine production is one of the best defenses against UTIs.

Can Cranberry Juice Treat a Current UTI?

The PACs in cranberries that are thought to prevent infections do not treat infections that have already occurred. If you have a current UTI, you should see your healthcare professional to receive effective treatment. Many home remedies are not effective in treating a UTI, but they can alleviate the symptoms while you’re waiting for antibiotics to treat the infection.

Preventative Treatments Are Available

Although you should see your healthcare provider if you have a UTI, you might be able to prevent infections. Try a preventative drink that offers an immunity boost and bacterial defense. The ingredients are all-natural, without artificial flavors or sweeteners. Other natural prevention methods include:

  • Wearing cotton underwear
  • Urinating right after sex to flush out bacteria
  • Opt for showers instead of baths
  • Completely empty your bladder when you go to the bathroom

For more information on how to prevent recurrent UTIs, check out our blog.

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