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natural UTI treatment

What to Do (and Not Do) to Treat (and Prevent) a Urinary Tract Infection

herbs uti

Who knew that acupuncture treats a urinary tract infection (UTI)?  A UTI can present as burning, frequent, incomplete, or urgent urination.  

When we treat a UTI, we're addressing something called "Damp-Heat."  Damp energy comes from food that you've eaten that doesn't transform into Qi.  Heat comes from a pathogen or inflammation of some kind.  

But for people who get recurring or persistent infections, we often need more than just needles.  

First, what about UTI PREVENTION? 

Here's a few best practices when it comes to preventing UTIs.

1.  Avoid eating too much sugar, including sugary drinks, and processed foods made from refined wheat and sugars.  These "foods" mess up your flora, the balance of naturally-occurring bacteria in your body that help keep your immune system in check.  

2.  Drink plenty of fresh, filtered water.  You don't need any special kind of ph-balanced water (that's a scam - water is already ph-balanced!) or special filter.  Just filter your tap water, and drink at least half your bodyweight in ounces per day, minimum.  

3.  Eat foods high in vitamins, minerals, and fiber (aka VEGETABLES and other things that grow from the ground).  They're good for you and you need to eat them, regardless of if you like them or not.  This is not optional.  (Download our free Healthy Cooking Guidebook for recipes, tips, and tricks.) 

4.  Wipe front to back (lol, do I really need to say this in writing?) and clean up down there after sex.  Infections, including fungi and bacteria, can be passed back and forth between sex partners, just FYI.  

What I recommend NOT doing for a UTI:  immediately jumping on antibiotics

Why?  Several reasons! 

1. It's not always bacteria!  It could be fungal in nature (and it often is).  Antibiotics will make an underlying fungal infection WORSE. 

2.  If it is bacteria, and the antibiotics clear it, you're more vulnerable to future infections due to the side effect of antibiotics

3.  The natural stuff (IMO) works better, faster, and with little to no side effects, so why not make that a first defense? 

If you have a UTI, what natural options are there?

The first thing I take if I experience symptoms of an impending UTI is Cranberry extract.  NOTE:  this is not the same thing as "Ocean Spray" or other sugar-based Cranberry flavored drinks.  REAL CRANBERRY is extremely sour and doesn't taste that good.  But it's very effective for balancing the flora (natural balance) in the urinary tract. 

Just take a shot of it (just an ounce or 2 mixed with water is all you need) 2-3 times per day for a few days, up to 1 week, longer than the UTI symptoms persist.  

I've had really good results using Cranberry Complex by Standard Process as well.  Just 2 tablets twice per day, for up to 2 weeks, usually does the trick.  Always take the natural remedies a few days to a week after the symptoms are gone.  

Some people like to take probiotics for UTIs, and if that works for you, cool.  Personally, I don't think they're strong enough to do the trick, especially for stubborn infections.  

For more persistent UTIs, I use stronger herbs like Andrographis, Berberine, or Arteminsinin.  All of these address fungal infections as well as bacterial.  A Traditional Chinese formula for UTI uses some of these herbs, and it's called "Ba Zheng Tang."

Combining those strong anti-microbial herbs with something like Peppermint, Green Tea, or Garlic helps get all the fungal or bacterial gunk out of your body completely.  

Another Damp-Heat remedy in TCM is called "Yin Care," which is a TOPICAL herbal treatment.  It won't treat the internal condition much, but if you're experiencing yeast-like symptoms externally, it's helpful.  

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