Newest Thinking On What to Eat and Drink In Order to Manage UTIs
There’s so much contradictory information out there…how can I make an intelligent decision?
Before we can answer the question about what to eat or drink to manage an active urinary tract infection (UTI), we need to answer the question: what is the goal?
The goal is to create a stable urinary environment in the bladder which prevents the bacteria from growing and becoming embedded in the lining.
How Should We Define A Stable Urinary Environment?
When you’re healthy, your urine has a good balance of acidity and alkalinity. What does that mean? Basically, it becomes more acidic, or less acidic (alkaline), based on the things that you eat and drink.
When you have an active UTI, and the E Coli bacteria get into your urinary tract, they cause your urine to become much less acidic. So, the thinking used to be that to prevent bacteria growth, you needed to make your urine more acidic.
But researchers at Washington University School of Medicine have recently found just the opposite: making urine less acidic inhibits bacteria growth.
What Level of Acidity Should You Try to Achieve?
Levels of urine acidity are measured on a “pH” scale.
A neutral pH is 7.0. The lower the number, the more acidic your urine is; the higher the number the less acidic. The average urine sample tests at about 6.0.
When you have an active UTI you may have a pH level of 8 or 9 and you will need to get that number back closer to 6, but you do not want to drive it all the way to the other end of the scale by following an acidic diet.