While young men rarely get urinary tract infections, an unfortunate part of aging is that men over 50 are more susceptible to urinary infections and other urinary problems. These problems are usually due to other health conditions such as an enlarged prostate (benign prostatic hyperplasia, or BPH), kidney stones, urethral stricture, diabetes, having a recent bladder catheter, surgery, or having low immunity.
Men who have BPH are particularly susceptible to urinary issues because the prostate gland is located at the base of the bladder. It can squeeze the urethra and cause residual urine to be left in the bladder after urination. This irritates the bladder lining and can lead to frequent urinary tract infections.
There are also other lower urinary tract symptoms (LUTS) that accompany BPH that don’t indicate an infection, but they can negatively affect your quality of life. Frequent urination, nighttime urination, urinary urgency, urinary hesitation and problems with urinary flow can all take a toll on your sleep and activity. That is why managing your other health conditions (like BPH) and diseases along with taking the best supplements for helping urinary health is the most natural paths you can take to prevent urinary problems. Here are some of the top supplements for supporting urinary health.
Taking cranberry for bladder and urinary health is not an old wives’ tale. There are many cranberry health benefits for men. Cranberry contains special phytonutrients called proanthrocyanidins (PACs). Cranberries are the only berries that contain A-type PACs. The A-type PACs assist in preventing bacteria from attaching to the urinary tract walls. This can help men manage their urinary health problems.
Pygeum also has a long history of use for bladder problems. The herbal extract comes from a tree, and modern research backs up many years of folk medicine use in bladder health and it’s use in supporting an aging prostate. This supplement has also demonstrated usefulness for prostatitis patients in relieving pelvic discomfort and urinary symptoms.
Stinging nettle may sound painful, but this soothing remedy has diuretic and anti-inflammatory properties, making it useful in managing prostate and urinary tract health. It works well in combination with other supplements such as saw palmetto.
For centuries, men have used saw palmetto to help with their prostate and urinary tract problems. Saw palmetto is generally well tolerated.
Beta-sitosterol is a phytosterol that has been found to promote better prostate health. A review of four studies on age-related prostate problems found that beta-sitosterol improved urinary flow rates, urinary health and the volume of residual urine. (Wilt 1999)
A study indicated that the phytonutrient diindloymethane (DIM) may reduce nighttime urination in men with prostate health issues. The many DIM prostate benefits also include balancing hormones, improved prostate function, and helping protect against age related prostate health decline. You can also get DIM’s benefits from eating cruciferous vegetables.
A prostate-friendly lifestyle
All of these natural ingredients can be used together along with other supplements that encourage proper urinary flow and support a normal prostate size. They are also available combined in quality supplements for prostate health. Taking prostate supplements is part of a healthy prostate-friendly lifestyle that also involves exercising, losing weight, managing hormones, and eating foods that benefit the prostate. If you are concerned about your prostate and urinary health, it is also important to stay well hydrated with water and to drink some of the top drinks for prostate health like green tea and hibiscus tea.
If you think you may have a bladder infection, seek medical treatment. Symptoms include frequent urination, a strong urge to urinate, a burning sensation during or after urination, a low-grade fever, cloudy urine, a strong urine odor and blood in the urine. Treatment may vary but often include taking antibiotics.
Wilt TJ et al. Beta-sitosterol for the treatment of benign prostatic hyperplasia: systematic review. BJU Int 1999 Jun; 83(9): 976-83