Here’s a sad health fact: Urinary Tract Infection (UTI) is the 2nd most common infection in the body. According to NIDDK, there are at least 8 MILLION cases of UTI every year!
This inspired me to come up with this MASSIVE and IN-DEPTH article about Urinary Tract Infection which includes a visual how-to guide about 46+ home remedies for UTI.
I encourage you to learn about UTI, know its causes and symptoms, then dive right into the comprehensive and informative list of remedies that you can definitely apply at home!
What is UTI?
First, let’s answer this question. From the term itself, it is an infection in someone’s urinary tract. As simple as that.
But what exactly is the urinary tract? These are the parts of your body where urine passes before it goes out of your body. It includes the kidneys, ureters, bladder, and the urethra.
If these terms sounds new to you, feel free to look at the visual guide in the infographic below.
Before we go further, I’d like to jot down a few misconceptions about this health condition. It’s important that we know exactly what we’re dealing with and not rely on some misinformation we may have heard about.
- UTI only occur in women– While it’s true that women are very much prone to UTI (about 1 of 2 women gets infected in a lifetime), men, children, and infants may also get infected. Although the chances are slim, it’s still worth learning about it. We have a short section about this below.
- UTI is a sex transmitted infection– Yes, there’s a high chance you’d get UTI from intercourse, but you may also get them from various sources. We’ll detail all of these causes in a section below.
- UTI is not that serious– Most cases of UTI gets treated in 2 to 3 days and you can even do it at home. However, there are also cases where it leads to permanent kidney damage when not treated immediately or correctly. Kidneys are one of the major organs in our body, therefore kidney damage = bad news.
UTI spreads from the lower part (urethra), since it is nearest to outside exposure, to the upper part (kidneys) of the urinary tract. This may be further classified to stages and each stage signals different symptoms.
- Stage 1: Urethra infection or Urethritis
- Stage 2: Bladder infection or Cystitis
- Stage 3: Kidney infection or Pyelonephritis
How do we know if it’s UTI?
As explained earlier, you’d encounter different UTI symptoms as the infections spread from one stage to another. We’ve listed all possible signs of UTI stage by stage below.
But make sure to give emphasis or keep an eye out for the early signs on stage 1. If you were able to control the infection here, it won’t go further up the urinary tract.
Stage 1: Urethra infection (Urethritis) Symptoms
- Frequent, sudden, or intense urge to urinate (even though little comes out when you do)
- There’s pain or discomfort when peeing
- Feeling that you’re unable to empty your bladder fully
- Feeling generally unwell, achy, shaky, or tired
- Occurrences of discharges
Stage 2: Bladder infection (Cystitis) Symptoms
- Pain, discomfort, or pressure in your back or lower abdomen (Pelvic pressure)
- Frequent Dysuria or you feel pain or burning during urination, even waking up at night, often with small amount of pee
- Urine may be cloudy, dark, with foul/ strange odor, contains blood
- Mild fever (less than 101 F or 38.3 C), chills
- Malaise or generally feeling unwell
Stage 3: Kidney infection (Pyelonephritis) Symptoms
- High temperature fever of 100.4 F (38 C) or above, with shivering, shaking, and chills
- Pain in your sides (flank) or upper back (usually on only one side at about waist level)
- Feeling /being sick
- Agitation or restlessness
- Nausea and vomiting
What causes Urinary Tract Infection?
UTI is generally caused by microbes like bacteria, viruses, and fungi. Bacteria are the number 1 cause of this infection. In fact, 90% of infections is caused by a bacteria called Escherichia coli (E. coli).
E. coli is normally found in our colon and around the anus, but due to several factors, these bacteria can get to the opening of the urethra then spreads to the urinary tract.
Under normal bodily functions, bacteria (and other microbes) in the urethra are flushed out whenever we urinate.
HOWEVER, there are cases wherein there are just too many. And when our body’s natural defenses can’t overcome it, that’s when infection happens.
On that note, when you DON’T DRINK ENOUGH FLUIDS or you HOLD URINE IN THE BLADDER FOR TOO LONG, guess what, those microbes are not getting flushed out.
Now, you may ask, how does abnormal amounts of microbes get into our urinary tract? There are two common causes of this increase: (1) improper bathroom habits and (2) improper sexual habits. The list below mostly involves women, and some may be applicable to men.
Improper bathroom habits
- Frequent baths (instead of shower)
- Incomplete cleaning of genital area (not wiping from front to back)
- Using feminine hygiene sprays
- Using tampons and scented feminine/ bath products
Improper sexual habits
- Not visiting the bathroom before and after sex
- Use of certain birth control products like diaphragm, unlubricated condoms, and spermicidal foam/jelly
Of course, there are other factors contributing to this like your general health status. For example, people who are elderly, diabetic, or have kidney stones are more prone to infection.
UTI in women
As mentioned earlier, women are more prone to UTI and this is simply because of the human anatomy. A woman’s urethra is shorter (allowing faster bacterial spread to the bladder) and it is near the source of microbes (vagina and anus). You may refer to the infographic below.
During pregnancy, certain factors like hormonal and physical changes can boost risk of UTI. The uterus can put pressure on the urinary tract, making it difficult for urine to pass.
Women in menopause also has increased risk of UTI. Hormonal change, especially a drop in Estrogen levels, decreases the body’s protective action against bacteria.
UTI in men
Men are unlikely to get UTI, in fact, most never had them. It is reported that only 20% of diagnosed UTI occur in men, and is more common to the elderly (aged 50 and up). Aside from age, this factors increase risk in men:
- Enlarged prostate glands
- Bladder catheter insertion
- Health conditions affecting immune system like kidney stones and diabetes
UTI in children and infants
UTI may also occur in children and even infants. 1% of boys and 3% of girls may develop UTI by age 11. The cause? Frequent delays in urinating.
Always, I repeat, always teach and remind your children to go to the bathroom when they have to.
In cases of babies or infants, always change their diapers promptly and remember to wipe PROPERLY.
How do you know if your child or your baby has UTI? Well, unfortunately, they can’t just tell you so you better watch out for these signs:
- Unexplained fever
- Strange-smelling urine
- Poor appetite or vomiting
- Fussy behavior
For further reading about UTI:
Natural Home Remedies For UTI or Urinary Tract Infection
We came up with this lengthy (and meaty) list of natural home remedies for UTI. We wanted to be as comprehensive as possible so that people can access all the information they need in one place.
We’ve included OVER 46 HOME REMEDIES ranging from fundamental practices, nutritious diet, herbal medicines, essential oils, and food supplementation. This way, you get to know and apply the most common remedies as well as have several other options depending on what are available to you.
In this guide, we’ll be adopting a HOLISTIC APPROACH to UTI treatment. This will involve remedies functioning in these major areas:
- Antimicrobial– involves killing and inhibiting (prevent growth) of bacteria, fungi, viruses, etc.
- Diuretics– inducing more urine production to flush out microbes
- Pain relief– directly alleviating the pain and inflammation caused by the infection
- Boosting the immune system– supporting the body’s defenses to naturally fight microbes and infection
This way, we could be effective and efficient in treating UTI to ensure we accomplish this the fastest way possible. Below is a preview of the top 10 home remedies for UTI which also serves as a quick visual guide. Proceed to the list to learn all the different ways of how to cure UTI.
Water And Frequent Urination
I’d like to start the list with the simplest yet most important of all the home remedies for UTI: water, lots of it actually.
Earlier, you learned that infection happens when bacteria isn’t flushed out the urinary tract. Drinking lots of water will do just that, it flushes out infection-causing-bacteria out through urine.
Since urinating is painful when you have UTI, people tend to delay. BUT DON’T. The very key to curing UTI is to urinate those microbes out the body.
In fact, all the UTI remedies you’ll learn here (even antibiotics) won’t be effective if you don’t drink water and urinate often. You can apply remedies that focus on pain relief to deal with the pain.
Furthermore, there are studies showing that a neutral (water-like) pH level in the urine actually helps our body’s immune system restrict the growth of bacteria.
Application: Drink water! It’s as simple as that. Some prefer warm water, some prefer cold. But how much? Many studies recommend drinking 8 to 10 glasses a day and urinate when you have to. A study also suggest to aim drinking water volume that’s half of your body weight. Read more here: http://drhollylucille.com/
Hot Water Compress
Action: Pain Relief, Anti-inflammatory
As mentioned earlier, UTI can give you some pain or pressure in your bladder area (lower abdomen). In some cases, this can even reach a constant nagging and cramping discomfort. To deal with this, a hot water compress should do the trick.
Applying heat in the lower abdominal area relaxes the muscles to reduce pain. It also improves blood circulation to reduce inflammation.
- Heating Pad- If you have a ready heating pad or gel pack at home, heat it up to a comfortable warm level, and place on your lower abdomen. You can apply this for 3 to 5 minutes or as needed.
- Hot Water Bottle- You could also go DIY on this. Fill a water bottle with hot water. You can cover with towel or any cloth to control the temperature. Leave the bottle on your lower abdomen for as long as needed.
Pelvic Sitz Bath
Action: Pain Relief
To alleviate pain from UTI, you can try a pelvic sitz bath. It’s a hydrotherapy treatment for several ailments. It involves sitting in a tub with water that covers the pelvic area, upper thigh and lower abdomen.
A warm bath relieves pain while a cold bath has anti-inflammatory effects. I suggest we do both.
Application: Fill the tub with comfortable hot water and soak for 5 to 8 minutes. Drain and refill with cold water, then soak for 1 minute. Others suggest that you take as long as 20 minutes in a hot sitz bath with epsom salt, once a day.
Apple Cider Vinegar
Action: Antimicrobial, Diuretic
Apple cider vinegar or ACV is a popular home remedy to many, many kinds of health conditions and infections. It can definitely help in UTI home treatment.
How? Apple cider vinegar is very rich in potassium, enzymes, vitamins, and minerals. It works as a natural antibiotic as it prevents bacteria from growing and multiplying.
It also acts as a diuretic which helps flush out bacteria, thus making the healing process faster.
Application: In a glass of warm water, dissolve 2 tbsp ACV. Best to go for organic brands in the market. If you don’t like the taste (like me), you can add 1 tbsp lemon juice and 1 tsp honey. Drink this twice a day, for 2 to 3 days. For best results, drink 20 minutes before meals.
Note: If you feel that the burning sensation while urinating is getting stronger, reduce the amount of ACV in the mixture. In some cases, the urine can get more acidic due to ACV’s acetic acid.
Action: Pain Relief, Antimicrobial
If you can’t bear the burning feeling and your frequent urges to pee, then baking soda is a quick UTI remedy for you.
It’s excellent in doing this one thing: neutralizing the acidity of the urine. Baking soda has alkaline properties that promotes pH balance, in turn, it significantly reduces the pain while peeing.
Moreover, it helps stop bacterial growth and detoxifies the urinary tract. Baking soda makes sure you’re on track to a speedy recovery.
Application: Make a Baking Soda Drink by mixing 1 tsp baking soda in 1 glass of water (8 oz or 240 ml). Drink once a day, first thing in the morning or on an empty stomach.
Note: Don’t do this for more than 7 days. Not advisable if you’re trying to avoid salt since baking soda is high in sodium.
Sea Salt or Himalayan Pink Rock Salt
Action: Pain Relief
If you are experiencing pain and burning sensation from UTI, of course you’d want it gone, as FAST as possible, right? Well, good news, that’s actually possible! If you have sea salt or Himalayan pink rock salt, then you can get UTI relief in a few hours.
How’s that possible? These salts alkalizes your body and neutralizes acidity in the urine. Plus, pink rock salt even has over 84 minerals you can benefit from. You can even continue taking this for preventive measures.
Application: Add 1 tsp finely ground sea salt or pink rock salt to a glass of water. Stir until completely dissolved. Drink it once (or at most twice) on the first day of your infection. Best to drink it first thing in the morning or before going to bed. For preventive purposes, you can lower the dosage to 1/2 tsp.
Note: This is an alternative to the baking soda remedy, you don’t have to take them both. Also, make sure you take certified organic sea salt or genuine Himalayan pink rock salt. Remember that this is different from your normal table salt!
Cream Of Tartar (With Lemon/ Lime)
Action: Antimicrobial, Immunity Booster
One old UTI home treatment that stood the test of time is the use of cream of tartar with lemon or lime. It works by regulating the pH in the urine which inhibits survival and further growth of bacteria.
Lemon or lime also adds the benefits of vitamin C in improving our immune system.
Application: Stir in 1 & 1/2 tsp cream of tartar into 1/2 to 1 cup warm water. Add a dash of freshly squeezed lemon or lime juice. Drink this solution 1 to 2 times a day, for several days. You may continue drinking this to prevent UTI in the future.
Proper Diet (Food To Avoid)
While this guide is all about what you need to take for UTI treatment, it’s equally important to discuss what NOT TO TAKE as well. Certain food and drinks actually worsen the condition of the infection.
This is mainly because they irritate the lining of the bladder, causing more pain and making it easier for bacteria to thrive.
Application: Here’s a list of food and drinks you should AVOID: hot/ spicy/ sour food, refined sugar and artificial sweeteners, alcohol, nicotine, carbonated drinks, caffeinated drinks (coffee, sodas, energy drinks, ready to drink teas), “sugary” fruit drinks, chocolate, refined and processed food, and high-sugar fruits and vegetables (watermelon, bananas, figs, grapes, guava, kumquats, lychees, mangos, beets, corn, parsnips, peas, potatoes in all forms, and winter squashes).
Note: Citrus fruits makes urine acidic and contains high levels of vitamin C, which is vital for strong immunity. However, it is debatable whether taking citrus fruits and juices is beneficial or not. Various studies show somewhat contrasting results when it comes to the right pH level in fighting UTI. For me, acidic urine is acceptable when you don’t feel pain when peeing, but when you do, go for alkaline remedies.
Food, Fruits, and Vegetables:
Action: Antimicrobial, Immunity Booster, Diuretic, Anti-inflammatory
I wanted to get this remedy early up here since the use of cranberries or cranberry juice is HIGHLY debated. Cranberry juice is probably the most popular and longest known natural cure for UTI.
Chances are you already learned about it from your grandma. However, several studies and researches show limited, mixed, and even opposing results when it comes to the effectiveness of cranberry juice against UTI.
How does cranberry juice work against UTI? The combination of the juice’s acidity and active ingredients like proanthocyanidins, hippuric acid, and d-mannose, prevents bacteria like E. coli from sticking to the walls of the urinary tract. This prevents bacteria from spreading and gets flushed out of the body.
In addition to this, it contains high amounts of vitamin C, which boosts the immune system. Some claims it also has diuretic and anti-inflammatory properties.
For me, whether its healing effects are questionable or not, we should AT LEAST go for its preventive effects. This is beneficial especially to people who get recurring UTIs.
- Consume as juice- Drink 1/2 to 1 glass, 3 to 4 times a day, and do this for a week. It’s important to note though that you must take the ‘real’ juice or at least the unsweetened juice. Usual cranberry juices you see in the supermarket shelves are loaded with sugar (sugar helps bacterial growth) and contains less of the active ingredients. You may add apple juice or honey to sweeten the taste. For preventive measures, drink 1/2 to 2 glasses per day.
- Consume as fruit- Eating dried cranberries may also help. Consume 1/2 cup per day.
- Cranberry-Chamomile Tea- It’s good to combine cranberry with chamomile as it adds a soothing effect on the urinary tract walls and improves immunity. Make a tea by combining 2 parts each of cranberry and chamomile, 1 part of Echinacea, and juice of 1 lemon in a container. Pour hot water and steep for 8 to 10 minutes. Allow to cool, strain, and drink.
Note: Not recommended for people with history of kidney stones.
Action: Antimicrobial, Immunity Booster
A close substitute to cranberries are blueberries. They actually have the same effect on preventing bacteria from attaching to our urinary tract. It’s also high in vitamin C so it also helps build immunity.
But a more noteworthy property of blueberry is the high level of antioxidants. In fact, it’s higher than cranberries as well as the other berries out there.
- Consume as drink- Like cranberries, you can also drink blueberry juice as a natural home remedy for UTI. You can also take 3 glasses of blueberry juice (without artificial sweeteners, of course) a day.
- Consume as fruit- There’s a big chance you’d find it hard to find pure blueberry juice in the market. Don’t worry, you can also have them as whole fresh berries. 1/2 cup per day will do. I love it with cereal in the morning. I’m sure you’ll love it too.
Note: Another alternative to blueberries are bilberries. They have similar effect when dealing with UTI. You can take bilberries as well, in case they are more abundant in your location.
Blueberry can also be used for: Boosting Memory
Foods Rich In Vitamins (C, A, D, E)
Action: Antimicrobial, Immunity Booster
Nourishing ourselves with a good dose of essential vitamins is a great way to go when gunning for natural cures for UTI.
Vitamin C is a natural antibiotic and an excellent immunity booster. Our bodies require at least 2,000 mg vitamin C daily. Doctors recommend as high as 5,000 mg when you have recurrent UTI. Vitamin C increases the acidity of the urine which inhibits bacterial growth. Plus, it is safe for pregnant women.
Vitamin A works by acting as a protective barrier for cells and is good in regenerating damage cells in the urinary tract. This will ensure fast recovery from UTI.
Vitamin D helps by fighting harmful bacteria while leaving good bacteria unharmed. More importantly, it has a vital role in preventing new bacteria entering the system through a peptide known as cathelicidin.
Lastly, Vitamin E prevents bacteria from thriving in the urinary tract by disrupting the activities of toxic radicals.
- Vitamin C rich foods- Here’s a list of vitamin C rich foods you can try: lemon (see another application below), pomegranate, Indian gooseberry, dry coriander, parsley, bell pepper, black currants, broccoli, cantaloupe, chives, cloves, dried basil, dry rosemary, fortified cereals, oranges, pomelos, raw brussel sprouts, raw mango powder, red cabbage, red pepper cayenne, West Indian cherry, saffron, sun-dried tomatoes, thyme, turnip greens, guavas, kiwi, melons, and raspberries.
- Vitamin A rich foods- Here’s a list of vitamin A rich foods you can try: cod liver oil, carrots, spinach, leafy vegetables, papaya, apricots, pumpkins, oranges, bell peppers, cantaloupe.
- Vitamin D rich foods- Here’s a list of vitamin D rich foods you can try: cod liver oil, sardines, salmon, mackerel, tuna, raw milk, caviar, eggs, mushrooms.
- Vitamin E rich foods- Here’s a list of vitamin E rich foods you can try: almonds, sunflower seeds, avocados, shrimp, rainbow trout, olive oil, broccoli, pumpkin, kiwi, Swiss chard mustard greens, spinach, turnip greens, kale, hazelnuts, pine nuts, parsley, papaya.
Note: I’d like to add a special section about lemon because while it’s rich in vitamin C, it’s also alkaline and diuretic in nature. It gives added value among the vitamin-rich foods. Simply squeeze half a lemon in a glass of warm water and drink it in the morning.
Note: Cod Liver Oil is another popular remedy for UTI since it contains good levels of both vitamins A and D. Consider taking cod liver oil supplements.
Spinach Leaves And Carrots
Unlike other vegetables out there, spinach and carrots have exceptionally high amounts of flavonoid and carotenoid compounds. This compounds function as anti-inflammatory (and even anti-cancer) agents.
Cooking seems to increase the availability of these compounds, so here’s a recipe i’m sure you’ll enjoy while treating UTI at the same time.
Application: Chop a handful of spinach leaves and slice a bowl of carrots. Boil in a 1/2 liter of water. Strain the water then crush the vegetables. Extract the juice and you’ll have your spinach-carrot soup! You may add salt and pepper to taste. Drink this soup 2 times a day.
Action: Antimicrobial, Immunity Booster
Pomegranate, also known as Anaar, is a delicious fruit that’s rich in antioxidants and vitamin C. Antioxidants prevents bacteria to attach in the urinary tract and gets flushed out of the body. You can regularly eat this fruit to prevent UTI as well.
Application: Eat a bowl of pomegranates daily, regularly.
Action: Anti-inflammatory, Pain Relief
For pineapple lovers out there, this remedy is perfect for you! An enzyme called bromelain is known to be present in pineapples. This enzyme contains anti-inflammatory effects which alleviates symptoms of UTI, especially in reducing pain while urinating. A good supplementary remedy and a tasty snack in one!
- As Fruit- Simply consume a cup of pineapple on a daily basis.
- As Juice- You can also juice half a pineapple and drink it.
Note: Go for the fresh fruit and avoid canned pineapples as it contains preservatives.
Pineapple can also be used for: Sore Throat
Action: Immunity Booster, Antimicrobial
Lingonberry, sometimes called fox berry or cow berry, produce bright colored berries that are rich tannins. Tannins produce chemicals that kill bacteria in the urine. Aside from antimicrobial properties, it’s also high in vitamin C that helps the immune system.
Application: Mix .06 oz (1.7 ml) lingonberry concentrate with 1/3 oz (7.5 ml) cranberry concentrate in 1/4 cup (50 ml) water, don’t add sugar. Drink once a day.
If you’re looking for a quick and easy diuretic for UTI relief, then cucumber is right for you! I just love eating cucumbers and I’m glad it also helps in UTI home treatment. Cucumber has high water content and helps increase frequency of urine.
Eating cucumbers in a regular basis keeps you healthy and well hydrated.
Application: Simply get a cucumber, wash it, slice it, and eat it.
Cucumber can also be used for: Acne
Coconut Water and Coconut Milk (and Other Fruit Juices)
Coconut water and Coconut milk are good natural remedies that eliminate bacteria when you have UTI. They have this substance monolaurin (also found in coconut oil) which provides wide-range antimicrobial action.
And the best part? It’s completely safe, even for babies. Monolaurin is said to be found in breast milk as well.
Coconut water is the colorless liquid you get from inside the young coconuts. Aside from its antimicrobial effect, it’s refreshing and it’s rich with electrolytes.
Coconut milk is the white liquid you obtain from the crushed/ grated flesh of mature coconuts. It’s a good dairy substitute if you’re lactose intolerant.
Application: Drink 2 to 3 glasses of coconut water a day. For coconut milk, it is recommended to take lower quantities since it could have a laxative effect.
Note: Other fruit juices you can try as remedies for UTI are: lemon juice, lime juice, orange juice, carrot juice, banana stem juice, and radish juice.
As mentioned earlier, D-mannose is one of the major components of cranberries and blueberries responsible for coating the bacteria and preventing them from sticking to the urinary tract walls. It’s natural sugar that does not metabolize unlike the other sugars.
In case you’re wondering, yes it comes in capsule and powder form. Taking them will provide similar effects when treating UTI. It’s safe for people of all ages, even when taken frequently for a prolonged time.
Application: Take 500 mg capsule (or 1/4 to 1 tsp powder) with a glass of water, 2 to 3 times a day, until infection fully clears up.
Action: Antimicrobial, Anti-inflammatory, Immunity Booster
If you haven’t heard about propolis, it’s a resinous substances produced by honey bees from tree buds. Bees use it as a sealant for their hives while humans generally use it for topical treatment of wounds and other skin conditions.
Although not widely known, it’s also used in treating UTI because it has antimicrobial, anti-inflammatory, and antioxidant properties. It’s best used with cranberry extract.
Application: Luckily you don’t have to find a bee hive to steal their propolis. It comes in capsule form and you can take 3 to 4 capsules, 2 times a day.
Yogurt And Other Probiotics
Action: Microbial Balance, Immunity Booster
Well, you probably know about how probiotics function in our body and the health benefits you get from them. In UTI treatment, probiotics may take a little longer than most remedies. But I want to give emphasis on the importance of taking probiotics when you have recurring UTI.
One of the major causes of recurring UTI is the imbalance of good and pathological bacteria in your intestinal flora, especially when you use antibiotics. Antibiotics may destroy good bacteria and develop bacterial resistance, that’s why pathological bacteria tend to overgrow.
Furthermore, probiotics helps improve your immune system and produces substances that prevent bacterial growth in the urine.
- Consume Yogurt- Eat Greek or plain yogurt (not flavored) daily. Try 2 to 3 bowls per day if you’re suffering from recurring UTI.
- Yogurt Wash- Apply 5 to 7 ml plain yogurt around the opening of your urethra. Do this 3 times a day, for 3 days.
- Other Probiotics- Add other sources of probiotics to your diet. Here’s a list: Kefir, Kombucha, Sauerkraut, Miso, Kimchi, Raw Cheese, L. rhamnosus, and L. reuteri.
Action: Antimicrobial, Microbial Balance
Curd is processed milk that’s somehow similar to yogurt. It is used as a UTI remedy because it eliminates harmful bacteria, as well as providing good bacteria. It’s another good food you can take in relieving and preventing UTI.
Application: Simply have a cup of curd everyday.
Tea Tree Oil
Action: Antimicrobial, Pain Relief
Tea tree oil is widely known for its rich antibacterial properties. It’s useful in treating all sorts of infections, including UTI.
- As bath soak- Mix around 10 drops of tea tree oil into your warm bath water. Soak in it for 8 to 10 minutes and wash your urethra opening with this water as well. Do this for 10 days. Alternatively, you can change the mixture by combining 6 drops of tea tree oil with 2 tsp of plain yogurt into the bath water.
- As topical rub- Mix equal amounts of tea tree oil, sandalwood oil, and juniper oil. Rub this mixture on your abdominal and bladder area. This will help relieve the pain from UTI. Apply once for 3 to 4 days.
Note: Tea tree oil is toxic and should not be ingested
Action: Antimicrobial, Anti-inflammatory
Clove oil is known to have antibacterial, anti-fungal, and antiviral activities. It also possesses anti-inflammatory properties that relieve pain from UTI and promote faster healing.
Application: Clove oil can be taken internally but remember to dilute it with water. 1 drop will do and use up to 1 week only.
Note: Make sure clove oil is pure and high quality.
Action: Antimicrobial, Pain relief
Myrrh oil is known in treating wounds and preventing infections due to its antibacterial, anti-fungal, and anti-parasitic properties. It can also be used for UTI relief.
- Internal- Myrrh oil can be taken internally but remember to dilute it with water. 1 drop will do and use up to 1 week only.
- Topical- You can apply it topically by rubbing it in your lower abdomen area with warm or cool compress.
Note: Make sure myrrh oil is pure and high quality.
Oregano oil is known to be a good antibiotic substitute since it’s effective in killing a broad spectrum of bacteria, including the ones seen in UTIs. Unlike antibiotics, it doesn’t cause antibiotic resistance and side effects.
Oregano oil can be taken internally but remember to dilute it with water or coconut oil. 1 drop will do and use up to 1 week only.
Note: Make sure oregano oil is pure and high quality.
Herbal Remedies and Spices:
Uva Ursi/ Bearberry
Action: Antimicrobial, Diuretic
Uva ursi or bearberry is an excellent natural remedy for UTI. It is said that native Americans are already using this remedy long before modern medicine. And recent researches prove the effectivity of this herb in curing infections, including UTI treatment.
Uva ursi contains the compound called arbutin, known for powerful antiseptic and anti-inflammatory properties that fights microbes and induces urination.
Uva ursi only works efficiently if the environment is alkaline. Make sure you try remedies that neutralize the acidity of your urine (like baking soda), before using this. Likewise, it won’t be effective with acidic remedies like cranberry, ACV, and other vitamin C-rich remedies.
- Herbal Tea- Make an Uva ursi tea by boiling 3 grams leaves in 5 oz (150 ml) water. Steep for 14 to 16 minutes. Drink 3 to 4 times a day, for a maximum of 5 consecutive days.
- As Herb Supplement- You may also find these in supplement form in drugstores. Take 300 mg every 3 hours for 2 days, followed by 300 mg daily for 7 days.
Note: Urva ursi’s active ingredients is toxic when used long term. Avoid this remedy if you have liver or kidney conditions, pregnant, or nursing. Not suitable for children as well.
Indian Gooseberry/ Amla and Turmeric Powder
Action: Antimicrobial, Anti-inflammatory, Immunity Booster
Indian Gooseberry or Amla is used by Indians as Ayurvedic remedy for over 6,000 years. It’s even deemed as a sacred tree in India. According to studies, the fruit is rich with phytochemicals and compounds that provide antimicrobial activities.
It also has good levels of vitamin C, minerals, and potent antioxidants. Overall, Indian Gooseberry is good in inhibiting a broad spectrum of harmful microbes.
Turmeric is also a powerful herb known for its antibacterial and anti-inflammatory effect. Its active component called curcumin, is proven to fight E. coli and Staphylococcus, two main causes of UTI. You could also benefit for its immunity effects due to antioxidants present in the herb.
- Gooseberry – Turmeric Solution: Mix 1 tsp gooseberry powder and 1 tsp turmeric powder into 1 cup of water. Boil solution for 10 to 15 minutes or until half of the water evaporates. Drink solution 3 times a day, for 3 to 5 days.
- Turmeric Powder: You could also consume the turmeric powder in itself. Take 2 to 3 tsp (or 400 to 600 mg), 3 times a day.
Note: Turmeric is best absorbed by the body if you take it with black pepper or pineapple.
Marshmallow Root Tea
Action: Anti-inflammatory, Antimicrobial, Pain Relief, Diuretic
Marshmallow root is one of my favorite natural remedies for UTI because of its amazing all-around effects on treating the infection. Plus, it’s one of the few remedies out there that’s totally safe for pregnant women and children.
Marshmallow root is rich in polysaccharides that makes it have its unique soothing effect that alleviates irritated and inflamed linings of the urinary tract. It also has antibacterial properties that inhibits bacterial growth.
Lastly, it has diuretic effect that increases urine production and it even clears up blood in the urine. Imagine, all this benefits from one remedy!
- Overnight Concoction- Fill up 1/4 of a jar (with lid) with crushed marshmallow root. Fill the jar with lukewarm water, cover with lid, and soak overnight. Strain next morning and drink throughout the day. Do it for a week.
- Marshmallow Root Tea- Take 1 to 2 tbsp dried marshmallow root and wrap in a cloth or in a tea infuser. Add boiling water and steep for 10 minutes. Drink 2 to 3 cups a day, for several days.
Note: In case you’re wondering, the drink will be thick and slimy due to the polysaccharides.
Action: Antimicrobial, Anti-inflammatory
I’m sure you love cinnamon when adding extra flavor to your desserts and coffee, but do you know about the tons of health benefits it gives?
Cinnamon is known to have healing effects on vomiting, diarrhea, colds, muscles spasms, erectile dysfunction, diabetes, and tumors, to name a few. It is also good in battling infections like UTI due to its antimicrobial and anti-inflammatory properties.
Studies showed that cinnamon active compounds like cinnamaldehyde exhibited inhibitory action against UTI-causing bacteria making it a legit home remedy for both men and women.
- Cinnamon Water- Add 1/2 to 3/4 tsp of cinnamon powder to 1 cup warm water and mix well. Drink 3 to 4 cups a day, for a week or two. For preventive measures, you can drink it once a day.
- Cinnamon Oil- Alternatively, you can take 1 tsp cinnamon oil per day.
Garlic is a universal natural home remedy when dealing with various types of infections. Garlic contains an ingredient called allicin which possesses powerful antimicrobial and anti-fungal properties.
The challenge, however, is in its application. Why? It smells! Yes, it may be unpleasant but if you can manage the garlic breath (and garlic urine), then use garlic to cure UTI.
- Raw Garlic- Eat 3 to 4 cloves raw, fresh garlic daily. You can also mix it with butter or vinegar and consume it as a salad dressing.
- Garlic pessary- I’m putting this here in case you’re interested in trying this. Prepare a pessary by peeling 3 garlic cloves and wrap them in medical gauze. Keep one end of the gauze longer since you will be inserting this in your vagina. Leave this for 2 to 3 hours and do it 3 times a day, for 4 to 5 days.
Coriander/ Cilantro Seeds
Action: Antimicrobial, Anti-inflammatory
Who would have thought that this popular culinary herb can do wonders to your health? Here’s a list in case you’re curious: menstrual pain, smallpox, skin disorders, mouth ulcer, diarrhea, high cholesterol, diabetes and vision problems.
Well, in case of UTI, it’s the seeds that actually do the work. Coriander seeds are long used as a traditional Ayurvedic remedy. It’s known for its ability to stop the breeding of bacteria and has a unique “cooling effect” which heals inflammation and eliminate the burning sensation while peeing.
- As Tea- You can boil 3 tbsp of coriander powder in a cup of water and drink as tea, once a day. Alternatively, you can boil 1 tbsp of crushed coriander seeds to your regular teapot.
- As Overnight Concoction- Mix 2 to 3 tbsp coriander seed powder (or crushed coriander seeds), 1 tbsp unrefined sugar (rock candy powder), and 3 cups of water. Leave it overnight. The next day, mix again and drink 1 cup, 3 times a day, for 3 days.
Coriander can also be used for: Hemorrhoids
Horsetail And Dandelion Tea
Action: Anti-inflammatory, Diuretic
Horsetail and Dandelion are little known herbs that have similar effects as remedies for UTI. It works in 3 ways. First, a compound called tannin helps tighten inflamed tissues in the lining of the urinary tract. Second, a compound called flavonoid has a calming effect in case you’re experiencing spasms. Third, it works as a good diuretic for proper urine flow.
- Horsetail-Dandelion Tea- Mix 1 tbsp dried horsetail and 1 tsp dried dandelion in a cup of boiling water. Let it steep for 10 minutes. Strain and sip the tea. Take 2 cups a day, for several days. You may add 1 tsp raw honey as a sweetener.
- Horsetail Supplement- You can also go for the supplement version of horsetail. Take 300 mg, 3 times a day, for 7 days.
Peppermint, Ginger, Juniper Berry Tea
Action: Antimicrobial, Anti-inflammatory, Diuretic
You can make an ultimate anti-UTI tea by combining these three powerful ingredients: Peppermint, Ginger, and Juniper Berry. But even if you take them as stand-alone remedies, you’d still be gaining benefits in naturally curing UTI.
Peppermint helps in decreasing the acidity of urine, this lessens the burning feeling when urinating.
Juniper Berry, is a known diuretic. It also helps in decreasing inflammation and fighting bacteria and viruses.
Ginger is a wonder herb when it comes to natural cures. It has strong antioxidant, antibacterial, and anti-inflammatory properties. Ginger blocks prostaglandin (pain transmitter) synthesis which effectively reduces inflammation and pain from UTI. It also makes urine alkaline.
- Peppermint-Ginger-Juniper Berry Tea- Boil 2 tbsp fresh grated ginger, 1/3 cup fresh mint leaves, and 2 tsp dried juniper berries in 4 cups of water. Allow to simmer for 7 to 9 minutes. Strain liquid and drink 2 to 3 cups a day. You may add 1 tsp raw honey to sweeten.
- Juniper berries- Take 1/3 oz (10 grams) juniper berries a day.
- Ginger Tea- Mix 1 tbsp dried ginger powder (or 1 tsp grated fresh ginger or 1 inch whole fresh ginger) into a cup of boiling water. Allow to steep for 5 minutes. Drink 2 to a maximum of 3 cups a day, for at least 1 week.
Note: DO NOT OVERDOSE on juniper berries. Avoid if you are pregnant, nursing, have other health problems in kidneys, stomach, intestines, blood pressure, and diabetic.
Horseradish roots are known for its powerful bactericidal properties due to a natural compound called allyl isothiocyanate. In fact, essential oil extracted from horseradish are used as an ingredient in manufacturing antiseptic drugs for UTI.
If you’re not familiar with horseradish roots, you must know that it’s pungent and spicy, so take precautions in preparing and consuming it.
- Horseradish Decoction- Boil 1 gram fresh or dried horseradish roots in 80 ml of water. Drink 3 times a day.
- Grated Horseradish- Grate 1/2 to 1 tsp horseradish roots and take 2 to 3 times a day. Drink milk afterwards to control the spiciness. You can also combine this with a few drops of lemon and 1 tsp honey.
Note: Stop this if you experience stomach ache. Not recommended for pregnant women or people with peptic ulcer or kidney problems.
An herb called goldenseal has a unique ability in UTI treatment. It contains an alkaloid called berberine that sticks to bacteria, which prevents the bacteria to stick in the walls of the urinary tract.
This prevents bacteria to breed further and gets flushed out of the body. Furthermore, goldenseal acts as a biofilm disruptor which helps in the multiplication of good bacteria.
It’s best to combine this with a natural diuretic.
- Goldenseal Supplement- Take 500 to 1,000 mg goldenseal food supplement daily, for 5 days.
- Goldenseal Extract- Take 1 tbsp of goldenseal herb extract up to 3 times a day.
Note: Not recommended for pregnant and nursing mothers.
Barley water is a powerful diuretic which flushes out bacteria and toxins while maintaining electrolyte balance in the body. It is one of the best home remedies for UTI when it comes to diuretics.
- Barley Powder- Boil 1 tsp barley powder in 2 to 3 glasses of water. Cool and drink 4 to 5 times a day.
- Roasted Barley- Add 1 tsp roasted barley and 1/2 tsp unrefined sugar (or powdered rock candy) into a cup of water. Drink 2 times a day.
- Barley Seeds- Add 1 tbsp barley seeds to 3 liters of water and boil until it turns pinkish. Add lemon juice, salt, and unrefined sugar to taste. Cool, strain, and drink every 15 to 20 minutes.
Barley can also be used for: Fever
Parsley is one powerful diuretic that helps in the healing process of UTI at home. It works by increasing the sodium in the kidneys which then result in the increase of urine excretion.
More urine means more bacteria flushed out your body.
- Parsley Water- Boil 1 to 2 cups of water then add 1 cup fresh parsley. Simmer for 5 to 6 minutes. Infuse for another 6 minutes. Strain and drink. You may also refrigerate it if you want it cold. Drink for several days.
- Parsley Tea- Add 2 tbsp dried parsley to 1 cup boiling water. Steep for 8 minutes before straining it. Drink for several days.
Another effective diuretic in the list of our natural home remedies for UTI are celery seeds. Celery seeds contain butylphthalide which not only helps in urine production but also helps in digestion.
- Celery Seeds- Simply snack on a handful of celery seeds after meals. Do this on a regular basis.
- Celery Seed Water- You can also make celery water to add more fluids to your body. Add 1 to 2 tsp celery seeds to 1 cup boiling water. Steep until room temperature. Strain and drink.
Action: Immunity Booster, Anti-inflammatory
Echinacea is a plant used way back as a traditional herbal remedy. It’s known to be a strong immune system strengthener and is popular in treating many health conditions like flu and cold.
It also has anti-inflammatory properties so in can be used in fighting infections, including UTI.
Application: Take 300 mg echinacea supplements, 3 times a day.
Some of us may already be drinking green tea on a regular basis as it’s popularly known to have high levels of antioxidants. But we probably don’t know that these antioxidants also reduce inflammation in the bladder.
Application: Drink 2 to 3 cups of green tea daily.
Olive Leaf Extract
Olive leaf extract (although in supplement form) is a powerful UTI cure due to its strong antimicrobial function. It contains oleuropein which is very effective in killing E. coli and Pseudomonas aeruginosa (Pseudomonas aeruginosa has low susceptibility to antibiotics). Some cases even show complete relief form UTI within a day!
Application: Simply take an olive leaf extract supplement with at least 20 to 25% (300 mg) oleuropein content. Any dosage lower than this won’t be effective.
Action: Antimicrobial, Diuretic, Immunity Booster
Hibiscus is a traditional herbal remedy used in treating several health conditions. It’s also powerful when it comes to fighting UTI. It’s known in killing E. coli and Staphylococcus.
Hibiscus is a mild diuretic and has good levels of vitamin C.
Application: Make hibiscus tea by boiling 1/2 to 1 oz (15 to 30 grams) hibiscus petals and sepals in 2 cups water.
Note: Not recommended for pregnant/ nursing mothers and people with kidney problems.
Action: Immunity Booster, Antimicrobial
Nasturtium, specifically Watercress, is an aquatic plant known to contain high levels of vitamin C. It is used in traditional medicine to treat fever and colds as it have antimicrobial properties. It’s also good to incorporate this in your diet if you’re suffering from UTI.
Application: You can consume all parts of the plant and have them in salads, sandwiches, or soups.
Action: Antimicrobial, Immunity Booster
Shatavari or wild asparagus is a herb long used in Ayurvedic medicine. It’s known to treat many women’s health issues. It can also be used in treating UTI as it has antibacterial effects against E. coli and Staphylococcus, plus it also boosts the immune system.
Application: Shatavari supplements are available in capsule, powder, and liquid form. Take 3 to 6 grams (1/2 to 2 tsp), 1 to 2 times a day.
Action: Diuretic, Anti-inflammatory
Stinging Nettle or Urtica dioica is an herb also used in traditional medicine. You may know it as an anti-itch remedy but it can also be useful for UTI relief. It works as a diuretic that flushes out bacteria and it also has an anti-inflammatory effect that soothes pain in the urinary tract.
Application: Make an herbal tea by mincing 4 tsp of fresh stinging nettle from leaves, stems, and roots. Add them to 4 cups of boiled water and steep for 20 minutes. Strain and drink hot or cold. Drink that 4 cups throughout the day, for 7 days.
Other Herbal Remedies
Action: Antimicrobial, Anti-inflammatory, Pain Relief
We’ve learned quite a couple of herbal remedies for UTI already. To conclude the list, here are more herbal remedies you can try. Although they are not that popular, you may have easy access to them, so why not use them as well.
- Sage Tea- Sage has antimicrobial and anti-inflammatory properties. Drink it as a tea (not longer than a few days) to treat UTI.
- Blue Brinjal Leaves- Make a concoction by boiling the leaves in water. Drink 2 times a day.
- Lotus or Pink Rose Petals- Make a concoction by boiling petals in water. Drink 3 times a day.
- Mullein- Mullein has anti-inflammatory and antibacterial properties. Make tea by boiling 1 to 2 tsp dried leaves in a cup of water. Steep for 10 to 15 minutes and drink 1 to 4 times a day.
- Chameli- Make a concoction by boiling chameli plant in water. Strain and drink once a day.
- Red Clover Blossoms- Red clover blossoms are known to have antibacterial and antioxidant properties. It’s known to have a ‘cleansing’ effect against UTI. It’s available in food supplement form.
- Hydrangea- Hydrangea can alleviate pain in the urethral/ abdominal area. It’s very helpful when UTI reaches kidneys and you feel pain in the lower back. You can eat it with salad or make a tea.
How Do We Prevent?
We all know prevention is better than cure. In the case of UTI, I’d like to give emphasis on the phrase “prevention is better than recurrence”. Please take note of these do’s and don’ts so that we can avoid suffering from UTI or put an end to experiencing recurring UTI.
- Drink plenty of water
- When urinating, empty bladder completely and don’t rush
- Keep genital area clean, wipe from front to back
- Cleanse before and after sex
- Urinate shortly after sex
- Wear cotton underwear and loose-fitting clothing
- Avoid feminine hygiene sprays
- Avoid scented douches and scented bath products
- Don’t hold your urine
- Don’t use diaphragm, unlubricated condoms, or spermicidal jelly/ foam for birth control
- Avoid tight jeans and nylon underwear
- Avoid caffeine and alcohol
- Avoid using tampons
Other Popular Home Remedies
- Home Remedies For Yeast Infection
- Home Remedies For Heartburn
- Home Remedies For Sore Throat
- Home Remedies For Cough
- Home Remedies For Constipation
- Home Remedies For Acne/ Pimples
- Other Home Remedies
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