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Herbal remedies

Use herbs to kill the bacteria that cause urinary tract infections

Tuesday, April 17, 2012 by: Sarka-Jonae Miller
Tags: herbal remedies, urinary tract infections, bacteria

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(NaturalNews) A urinary tract infection is almost exclusively caused by bacteria that travel to the bladder through the urethra, according to the University of Maryland Medical Center. The bacteria clings to the urethra's opening and multiplies. Sometimes, bacteria travels to the kidneys, but this is rare. The most common culprit is Escherichia coli (E. coli), according to New Mexico State University.

Urinary tract infection symptoms

UTIs may cause different symptoms in some people even if caused by the same infection. According to the University of Maryland Medical Center, symptoms include:

• Pain, a burning sensation or feeling of urgency during urination
• Increased need to urinate
• Blood or pus in urine
• Chills
• Fever
• Pain during sex
• Nausea
• Malaise
• Foul smelling urine
• Abdominal cramps
• Lower abdominal pain
• Pain or burning during urination

Mustard oils for UTI treatment

Mustard oils derived from horseradish root and the nasturtium herb can be used as treatment for UTI, according to a 2006 study published in the Arzneimittel-Forschung journal. The study found that a combination of extracts from horseradish and nasturtium, two plants from the mustard family containing volatile mustard oils as the active ingredients, demonstrated antimicrobial properties, meaning they kill or inhibit the growth of microorganisms like bacteria. Researchers stated that the combination of these two supplements is a rational treatment for UTI and upper respiratory infections.

In a similar study published in the Arzneimittel-Forschung journal that same year, participants took either antibiotics or an herbal drug combining horseradish and nasturtium. The group who took the antibiotics experienced a 87.9 percent decrease in symptoms versus 81.2 percent in patients who took the herbal drug. However, researchers found that the herbal drug had a clear advantage because the participants taking the supplement needed fewer supportive procedures and administration of concurrent medication.

Grapeseed extract

Grapeseed extract may also be an effective treatment for UTI and other infections. The supplement promotes activity to fight bacteria that are causes of urinary tract infections.

Grapeseed extract also has antifungal and antiviral properties to treat infections caused by fungi or viruses. The University of Maryland Medical Center recommends taking 100 milligram capsules or five to 10 drops of liquid grapeseed extract three times a day for treating infections.

Ineffectiveness of antibiotics

Up to 40 percent of UTIs recur in women within six months and up to 50 percent within one year using traditional treatments, according to the University of Maryland Medical Center. Infections are usually caused by the same bacteria. Antibiotics only suppress the bacteria temporarily, allowing for another infection to strike again soon.

Continuing to take herbs, such as cranberry and horseradish, may prevent another infection by killing new bacteria that cause UTIs. Goldenseal can stop bacteria from adhering to the bladder walls and reduce the likelihood of an infection.

Additional herbs that support the urinary health

According to New Mexico State University, there are several urinary support herbs, including:

• Agrimony
• Couchgrass
• Elder flower
• Juniper
• Horsetail
• Lady's mantle
• Plantain
• Saw palmetto
• Yarrow

Taking these herbs promotes overall urinary health. To specifically fight E. coli and resulting infections, people can use the following herbs:

• Calendula
• Chamomile
• Fennel
• Ginger
• Oregon grape root
• St. John's wort
• Thyme
• Uva ursi
• Yarrow

Sources for this article include:

http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/16618018
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/17260672
http://medplant.nmsu.edu/Diseases/uti/uti.HTML
http://www.umm.edu/altmed/articles/urinary-tract-000169.htm
http://www.naturalnews.com

About the author:
Sarka-Jonae Miller is a former personal trainer and massage therapist. She has a journalism degree from Syracuse University. Sarka-Jonae currently writes romantic comedy novels and romantic erotica under the same SJ Miller.
Get more health and wellness tips from SJ's natural health Twitter feed or from SJ's Facebook page.
SJ's books can be found on Amazon.
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