“Yes, cranberry juice can help treat urinary tract infections,” says a urologist. A UTI is a bacterial infection of the urinary system that typically causes burning while peeing, frequent urination, and pain in the lower abdomen. The urine may also have a foul smell and look milky or cloudy. It may even contain blood. The symptoms are often more severe in older people.
PAC in cranberries stops bacteria from attaching on to the urinary tract walls
The active ingredient in cranberries, called PAC, prevents bacteria from attaching to the urinary tract walls. It can be used in a variety of ways. It may act as a receptor analog to prevent p-fimbriated E.coli from adhering with urinary tract cells. This anti-adhesion effect is independent of antibiotic resistance.
Studies have shown that high-doses of cranberry PAC are effective in reducing the incidence of recurrent UTI. These supplements may also reduce the risk of future infections. High-doses of PAC in cranberry products are not recommended for everyone. Some can cause gastrointestinal problems or excess calories.
PAC in cranberries inhibits E. coli adhesins
Recent research has shown that the PAC in cranberries inhibits the adhesion of two uropathogenic strains of E. coli. The results suggest that cranberry PACs inhibit the formation of double A-type linkages, which may be important in the anti-adhesion process. These results are promising, but further research is required to determine their biological significance.
Two hours after oral intake, bacteria detected the anti-adhesion properties of PAC in cranberries. However, this activity disappeared eight hours later. This means that cranberry products must be consumed twice daily to achieve a long-lasting, sustained anti-adhesion effect.
PAC in cranberries reduces uti disease morbidity
Recent studies have demonstrated that the PAC in cranberries can reduce the incidence of UTIs. The PAC in cranberry extract, a natural phenolic compound, inhibits the adhesion of bacteria to the uroepithelium, reducing the risk of infection. Its effectiveness as a UTI treatment should be confirmed by well-powered, randomised clinical trials. Side effects of cranberry consumption should also be reported in the studies. Standardization of outcome measures is important so that studies can be compared.
PAC in cranberries has a dose-dependent anti-adhesion activity and has been found to inhibit bacterial adhesion to epithelial cells. This effect is independent of antibiotic resistance, and it has been reported to decrease virulence in E. coli and P. aeruginosa in studies.
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