Can Cranberries Effectively Treat UTIs?

Can Cranberries Effectively Treat UTIs?

The Statistics

About 11 per cent women suffer from UTI’s every year and at least 50 per cent have it for a lifetime. In India, the situation is even grimmer, as about one in two women, could be suffering from UTI’s and more so, in the rural areas. One of the most important causes for the same is lack of sanitation as 636 million Indian households continue defecating in the open due to lack of toilets.

This rise in UTI’s require increasing use of antibiotics. However repeated use may just make it worse, as the body becomes resistant to these drugs. Therefore, there is a growing need for certain foods to take over and reduce the use of antibiotics. One such food is cranberries!

How Do Cranberries Help?

For any infection to be caused, the bacteria (E.coli), should first adhere to the surface of the host. The bacteria have tendrils that enable strong adhesion to the host, It has been observed that certain compounds such as proanthocyanidins and flavonols form a part of the plant’s defense system and compress the tendrils, so that the bacteria fail to adhere to the surface as strongly as before.

Juice Or The Fruit? Whole cranberries are always better, as they are packed with more of the above compounds. The consumption of juices should be restricted, as they usually have high sugar content which promotes bacterial growth, thereby negating the effect.


Although cranberries are considered to be an effective treatment or prevention against UTI’s or any other bacterial infections, they are often expensive and sometimes more expensive than certain antibiotic drugs. Hence, only after carefully considering the degree of UTI’s or other infections, we can better ascertain the contribution of cranberries and antibiotics in a treatment program.

Increasing research on cranberries and urinary tract infections (UTI’s) has been done and apart from its well-known antioxidant properties, it is also stated that cranberries have unique antibiotic properties

Health Tip

Consuming adequate water; at least six-eight glasses per day and maintaining hygiene are important.

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