Bladder control problems may originate from food or drink irritants. These irritants cause inflammation on the bladder walls. Inflammation, in turn, causes urinary frequency, urgency and burning. Discovering what food and beverages are causing the inflammation and eliminating them from your diet helps in bladder recovery.
1. Foods & Drinks
Eliminate beverages such as alcohol, citrus juices and caffeine drinks. Caffeine is a natural diuretic that causes the bladder to spasm and creates urinary urgency. Grapefruit and orange juices are acidic and irritate the walls of the bladder. Alcohol also causes inflammation of the lining of the bladder, resulting in urinary frequency.
Avoid foods such as tomatoes or tomato-based products and fruits such as oranges, lemons and grapefruit for their acidic content. Other foods to avoid include chocolate, sugar, artificial sweeteners and spicy foods. Spicy foods irritate the bladder walls leading to urgency and a leakage of urine, called urinary incontinence.
2. Food Diary
Eliminate all foods and beverages that may cause bladder inflammation for a two-week period. Introduce the foods and drinks one at a time back into your diet. This allows you to determine which items you have trouble with and which you do not. Not all foods or drinks will be a problem, so your goal is to find out which ones are. The food diary helps you keep track of items as you reintroduce them back into your diet and you can record how you feel after each food or drink is consumed. Most reactions occur within 48 hours.
Eliminate the problem foods for a month. You will know by the end of the month if these specific foods are causing your bladder problems. Start the elimination diet over again if bladder difficulties remain.
3. Herbal Teas
Drink herbal teas that soothe the bladder lining, decreasing urgency and burning. Soak marshmallow root for several hours, then strain and drink. The herb has a soothing effects on the bladder. Try corn silk, horsetail, buchu and cleavers in tea to soothe bladder spasms.
Discuss with your doctor any changes in your diet. He may refer you to a nutritionist who will guide you in the correct diet for your needs.
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