5 Dietary Changes to Support Bladder Health

May 17, 2024
Woman eating healthy vegetables

Good bladder health is about a lot more than just managing symptoms. As anyone who struggles with chronic UTI infection knows, if you’re experiencing painful symptoms it’s already too late. You don’t want to get that far.nThat’s why I recommend my patients focus on preventative measures. 

Now, it’s an important caveat to mention that any one proactive measure is not guaranteed to be a fix-all. The onus for overcoming chronic UTIs cannot be on you alone. But it can be empowering and helpful to the overall picture for chronic UTI sufferers to understand the areas in which they do have some control.

Dietary habits are definitely a factor that can either support or aggravate bladder function. Let’s look at five simple dietary changes you can make that will help to promote bladder health and reduce the risk of urinary symptoms:

H2O: How water supports bladder health

Staying hydrated is essential for bladder health. Drinking an adequate amount of water throughout the day helps to dilute urine, reducing its concentration and preventing irritation of the bladder lining. 

I tell my patients to aim for eight glasses of water a day, but be mindful to increase that amount if it’s particularly hot out or if you are exercising. For an easy way to stay motivated, invest in an oversized water bottle that can give you a visual on how you are staying on track.

Understand the impact of caffeine on your bladder

If you are someone who suffers with chronic bladder issues, caffeine intake can be a contributing factor. Caffeine is a diuretic which means that consuming it increases urinary frequency and urgency.

Consider reducing your intake of caffeinated beverages such as coffee, tea, and soda, or switch to decaffeinated alternatives. Also, be careful to avoid hidden sources of caffeine. Culprits like chocolate and certain medications may be harboring more than you would think.

Acidic foods and UTIs

Acidic foods, like citrus fruits, tomatoes, and vinegar, as well as spicy foods, artificial sweeteners, and carbonated drinks, are known to irritate the bladder and exacerbate urinary symptoms.

Of course I’m not suggesting cutting out all of these foods as I don’t think that would be sustainable for many people. But taking some time to evaluate your consumption of these items and perhaps reducing their intake could do a lot of help alleviate bladder irritation.

The role of fiber in preventing bladder issues

Constipation can play a role in contribution to bladder issues. A high fiber diet is key to helping promote healthy digestion and avoid constipation. The easiest way to get more fiber in your diet is to each fiber-rich foods like fruit, vegetables, whole grains and legumes.

To help consume an adequate amount of fiber, I recommend my patients aim to have half of their plate filled with veggies, one quarter should be protein, and the last quarter should be complex carbohydrates.

Foods that support urinary health

Certain foods are known to be beneficial for bladder health. These include water-rich fruits and vegetables like cucumbers, watermelon, and celery, which can help hydrate the body and flush out toxins. 

Other bladder-friendly foods include lean proteins, whole grains, and healthy fats like avocados and nuts. In The Akehurst Protocol, we also dive into some more specific foods that have been scientifically shown to support the health of your microbiome.


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