Date: Tue, 12 Sep 1995 08:13:22 -0400
From: pasull <pasull.TIAC.NET>
Subject: Herb for bladder infections
I have a friend who gets many many bladder infections. Does anyone know of an herb/combination of herbs that would help rather than taking antibiotics numerous times a year.
Thanks in advance!!!
From: Ari Solovyova <asolovyo.INDIANA.EDU>
What I know of is:
- Cranberry juice (MUCH better fresh than bottled) -- on empty stomach, in small doses, as much as possible.
- Birch leaves and buds, fresh or dried, 2tbsp. per 2 cups of boiling water, let stand for an hour, strain, drink all of it in small doses throughout the day.
- Sweet Flag (Calamus) root, 1 tbsp. per cup of boiling water, boil for 15 minutes (in a steamer or double boiler), drink in small doses on empty stomach.
- St. John's Wort and Yarrow (Milfoil), 1 tbsp. per cup of boiling water, let stand for an hour, strain, drink in small doses on empty stomach. These two herbs may be poisonous if drunk in large doses; but the dose that I mentioned is innocent; I myself used them many times in this dose.
All these things kill bacteria, reduce inflammation, and promote the flow of urine. You may also want to consult "The Herb Book" by John Lust; it has a long list of herbs for most common diseases. (Or any other herbal.)
From: christopher hedley <christopher.GN.APC.ORG>
Also Uva ursi = bearberry leaves and garden thyme and... sensitive bladders will benefit from regular use of a soothing, demulcent herb such as Mallow or barley water.
St John's wort is not poisonous. Large doses cause a photosensitive reaction in cattle, ie. a nasty rash only brought out by strong sunshine. There are reports of humans with HIV having such a reaction when given large doses of an extract of the herb, but we are not talking concentrates here.
Yarrow is not poisonous, in theory it could cause a photosensitive reaction, but I have never come across this. Pregnant women should avoid large doses, except with expert advice.
There is much misinformation about, concerning herbal toxicology and very little hard data.
Your friend should also find out why they get recurrent bladder infections.
From: KIM MAYROSE <SCA.PRODIGY.COM>
> I have a friend who gets many many bladder infections. Does anyone know of an herb/combination of herbs
I know that taking Echinacea and drinking cranberry juice has worked wonders for me. Is your friend male or female? It may help reduce the number of bladder infections each year to get at the cause of them. If it's a woman, emptying the bladder before and after intercourse (are we allowed to say that on this list?) can help, as well as wiping front to back. Also, if this is a woman, have her use a hand held sprayer after intercourse to wash germs away from the urethra. Flush bacteria out of the bladder by drinking enough water. Empty bladder completely. This may sound strange and I can only speak for women, but when you think you have emptied your bladder, bend over and push forward over your bladder area. Then stand up, sit down and repeat the above process. I am always amazed at just how much more there was still left. Have him/her avoid holding a full bladder. She/he should urinate at least every 3 hours.
Other suggestions would be to wear cotton-crotched underwear, and not to use bubble baths or harsh soaps. They can irritate the urethra and set you up for an infection.
BTW, the Echinacea will work as an antibiotic and the cranberry juice makes the urine less acidic so it causes less burning upon urination.
Most people don't have to do all of the above to avoid bladder infections, but if your friend is having them that frequently, he/she might want to try all of them. I usually only get them when pregnant, so have not had to use ALL the above methods.
Hope this helps.
From: /Jennifer North <JNWildflwr.AOL.COM>
Chronic bladder infections are usually a symptom of candida, which is scientific jargon for excessive yeast overgrowth. There are many things that can be done for this condition, but it must be taken seriously. Candida can make women miserable for a lifetime. The first thing is that yeast feeds on sugar. Refined and natural sugars. She should stay away from juices (except cranberry), refined sugar products, dried fruits, etc. She should drink A LOT of water, all the time. She should always take a good multivitamin, 1,000 m of vitamin c, and most importantly take acidophilus everyday. Acidophilus is the culture that makes yoghurt. She should take it in powdered or capsule form three times a day. Scince this is a chronic problem, she should continue even after the infection is gone.
These dietary changes should be long-term for her. When the candida is in check, she can go back to MODERATE sugars, but always accompany it with the acidophilus. She should also stay away from fermented products (incl. alcohol) when she has the infections. One last point. Antibiotics destroy the positive flora in the intestine, which is what destroys excessive yeast and keeps it in check. Therefore, the antibiotics may kill the bladder infection, but it will only serve to compound the underlying problem, causing the infections to become a permanent and annoying part of her life.