Ways to Keep Your Bladder Healthy this Summer
It’s a known fact that with rising temperatures, comes a higher risk for poor urinary tract health. In fact, nearly 60% of women and 12% of males are susceptible to developing a UTI during the warm summer months.
There are many things that you can do this summer to help keep your urinary tract system working at its best. Continue reading to learn six tips from a urologist to ensure a healthy urinary tract.
6 Tips for Maintaining Your Urinary Tract Health
During the hot summer months, it is important to drink plenty of fluids, as staying hydrated is necessary for your bladder and urinary tract to ensure they function properly. Here are 6 tips to help keep your urinary tract health up to date this summer.
1. Drink Lots of Fluids
The main cause of dehydration during the summer is sweat. When outdoors sweat can be brought on by higher summer temperatures, causing you to lose fluid at a faster rate than normal. Making sure you are drinking enough water is essential to maintaining a healthy fluid balance during the summer. In order to know how much water is needed for your body follow this tip; Each day you want to drink half an ounce of water for every pound you weigh. For example, if you weigh 145 pounds it is recommended that you drink about 72.5 ounces of water each day.
The best way to determine if you need more fluids is by checking the color of your urine. The color of urine that is considered healthiest is a pale yellow — which can be seen on the urine color chart. If your urine is a deep yellow or almost brown in color it can be a sign of poor urinary tract health or severe dehydration. When you do not drink enough fluids you are not allowing bacteria in your bladder to leave the body. This is what causes a UTI, or if done over a long period of time, can cause bladder cancer.
2. Avoid Holding in your Bladder
When you have to go, you have to go! It is important to not hold your bladder for extended periods of time. Holding in your bladder allows bacteria to sit and multiply, which can then begin to cause health issues if you do not regularly release it from the body.
The best way to ensure you aren’t holding your bladder too long is to properly train it. Bladder training is a simple and effective way to develop good bathroom habits. For example, one way people train is by setting specific times to urinate. Setting these times three to four hours apart will teach your bladder how to urine continually throughout the day.
3. Eat Fruits and Vegetables
What you eat every day greatly impacts your urinary tract health. Too much protein can change the amount of urine going to the bladder, just as too much spicy food damages the bladder walls and irritates your urinary tract.
Best Fruit for Urinary Tract Health
Bananas, pears, and berries are all great fruits to eat regularly this summer to maintain your urinary tract health. Bananas contain potassium and fiber that can help release pressure from inconsistencies in urination. They’re great because they are non-acidic and will not irritate the lining of your bladder.
With their low sugar contents, pears are a fruit that your bladder will benefit from as well. Pears provide the highest number of antioxidants that reduce the impact of proteins in the cells in your bladder leading to enhanced bladder health. You can also find antioxidants in berries which are fantastic for cleansing the urinary tract. Berries are loaded with a compound called flavonol, which fights harmful bacteria found in the urinary tract.
Best Vegetables for Urinary Tract Health
The best vegetables you can eat this summer are ones that are a part of the cruciferous family. Vegetables in this category include brussel sprouts, cabbage, arugula, broccoli, cauliflower, kale, radishes and turnips. Typically, these vegetables hold a strong aroma, along with a ton of nutritional value. Containing high amounts of vitamin C and fiber, they contribute to flushing out your urinary tract. Just by eating two or three cups of these vegetables daily, your urinary tract will thank you, as it will clear out any unwanted bacteria.
4. Keep Active
Exercising is one of the best ways to keep your body healthy, and is the most productive way of maintaining a healthy urinary tract system. Daily exercise helps keep urine inconsistency at bay and alleviates pressure on the bladder. Which in turn, allows it to expand properly and fill the correct way. It also allows for the body to release fluid through your sweat glands allowing less fluid build up in the urinary tract. Exercise can also help you maintain a healthy weight which is another factor that affects your overall urinary tract health.
5. Wear Loose Clothes
Tight clothes are a leading cause as to why so many people end up with urinary tract infections. Clothing that is too tight can cause moisture to get trapped in specific areas. Moisture build up in the region of genitalia contributes to build up of bacteria. When these bacteria multiply it can harm the urinary tract causing infection. To ensure you have a healthy urinary tract, you should consider wearing loose fitting clothing that allows your lower regions to breathe and cool off during warm summer days.
6. Limit Alcohol and Caffeine
Though caffeine and alcohol are acceptable in small doses, some unwanted side effects can arise when too much of these drinks are consumed. Caffeine is a stimulant and diuretic meaning that it will get rid of fluid you have stored in your body. This will cause your urge to urinate to become more frequent.
On the other hand, alcohol can have substantial effects on your kidneys. The kidneys are where urination production begins and damaging this organ can disrupt the entire urinary tract system. Alcohol interferes with acid balance which can make your body hold onto too much salt and water. If ever combined, caffeine and alcohol can increase the risk of your body not being able to properly remove waste from its system.
Manage Your Urinary Tract Health at Urology Specialists of the Carolinas
We hope that the information in this blog is helpful as you move through the summer months. If you are experiencing any issues with your urinary tract health do not hesitate to find a location and schedule an appointment with our experienced medical staff. For more information on making the proper diet and lifestyle choices for a healthy urinary tract, access our free guide by clicking the button below.