Do you worry about your bladder leaking every time you sneeze or lift something heavy? Are belly laughs banned in your home? Or do you scope out the location of the restroom as soon as you step into a restaurant or movie theater?
If you’re worried about springing a leak anytime there’s a little pressure put on your bladder you’re not alone. Experts say there are millions of other folks around the world who know just how frustrating it is to have a bossy bladder.1 In fact, in any group of folks 65 or older nearly 44 percent are struggling with shoring up those frustrating leaks.2
It’s called stress urinary incontinence or SUI. And although women are about twice as likely to experience SUI, countless men are suffering through it in silence too.
But while many simply accept being handcuffed to the toilet because they believe bladder issues are just a normal part of aging, you don’t have to grin and bear it. There are effective, natural, leaky bladder solutions you can try that could help you take back control.
Stop bladder spasms with this seed:
Pumpkin seeds have an impressive history of being used to help ease urinary complaints. For example, they’ve long been used to help guys with the urgency they get from having an enlarged prostate. But it turns out these delicious little seeds are tops for the ladies too.
Research has revealed that pumpkin seed extracts could help slash your bathroom dashes by up to 68 percent.3,4,5 Experts say an amino acid found in the seeds, called myosin, may be behind its ability to calm a cranky bladder.
Mysoin plays a role in muscle contractions, and may help your bladder muscles stay relaxed as it fills up.6 By slashing muscle spasms the pumpkin seed compound could help calm those sudden urges that send you running for the restroom day and night.
Munch on about one half a cup of pumpkin seeds a day, or look for a pumpkin seed supplement.
Dodge a dodgy bladder with D:
Experts say keeping your vitamin D levels up could make you far less likely to experience urinary problems. In fact if you’re a senior woman, maintaining healthy D levels could slash your risk of bladder leaks by 45 percent, according to researchers from SUNY Upstate Medical University.7
Your pelvic floor muscles rely on vitamin D to stay strong, and hold your bladder firmly in place.8,9 Low levels of the vitamin can leave the hammock of muscles too loose leading to leaks. And since vitamin D deficiency is so widespread the chances of you running low are high. Your doc can confirm your levels for you with a simple test. Experts recommend 2,000 IU of vitamin D3 a day to keep your muscles healthy, and reduce your bladder issues.
Go more, leak less with this tea:
There’s a reason that horsetail tea has been used since the days of ancient Rome and Greece to tackle urinary problems, and that is it works. The horsetail plant is a natural anti-inflammatory that can reduce bladder inflammation. This can help calm your urge to go all the time. In fact, the German Commission E has approved it as an effective treatment for bladder inflammation and swelling.10
But the other reason horsetail tea works so well may is that it’s an excellent diuretic.11 And while making you go more may seem counter-intuitive at first, it turns out to be a great way to help shore up leaks.
First of all the tea reduces the buildup of fluid in the tissues surrounding your bladder, which means there’s far less pressure to make you feel like you need to run to the toilet constantly. Plus, fully emptying your bladder (on your own terms) takes the pressure off too.
Sip on two cups a day and within two weeks you should notice a difference.
Stop letting your pushy bladder boss you around. Give one, or all three, of these natural solutions a try and regain control.
Have you successfully overcome a leaky bladder? Share your tips in the comments below.
1. “International Group Seeks to Dispel Incontinence “Taboo,” JAMA, 1998, No 11: 951-53
2. “Prevalence of Incontinence Among Older Americans,” U.S. DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH AND HUMAN SERVICES Centers for Disease Control and Prevention National Center for Health Statistics, Series 3, Number 36, [Page 5]
3. “A pilot study of Uretin 45+ in women with urge incontinence and/or a mixture of urge and stress incontinence,” Bioaktiva Pharma AB/ Åsa Karlsson and Eva Lundberg, 050118, www.kvinnohalsa.se, Accessed 3/22/2017
4. “A randomized double-blind placebo-controlled clinical trial of a product containing pumpkin seed extract and soy germ extract to improve overactive bladder-related voiding dysfunction and quality of life,” Journal of Functional Foods, Volume 8, May 2014, Pages 111–117
5. “Study of effectiveness of mixed processed food containing Cucurbita pepo seed extract and soybean seed extract on stress urinary incontinence in women,” Jpn J Med Pharm Sci. 2003; 14(3):313-22.[www.penthapharma.com: Page 19-35]
6. “In vitro and in vivo relaxation of urinary bladder smooth muscle by the selective myosin II inhibitor, blebbistatin,” BJU Int. 2011 Jan;107(2):310-7
7. “Vitamin D and pelvic floor disorders in women: results from the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey,” Obstet Gynecol. 2010 Apr;115(4):795-803
8. “Vitamin D Status – A Clinical Review with Implications for the Pelvic Floor,” Int Urogynecol J. 2012 Nov; 23(11): 1517–1526
9. “Vitamin D deficiency in postmenopausal women with pelvic floor disorders,” J Midlife Health. 2015 Apr-Jun; 6(2): 66–69
10. “Horsetail,” Gale Encyclopedia of Alternative Medicine, 2005, Encyclopedia.com, Accesed 3/22/2017
11. “Randomized, Double-Blind Clinical Trial to Assess the Acute Diuretic Effect of Equisetum arvense (Field Horsetail) in Healthy Volunteers,” Evidence-Based Complementary and Alternative Medicine, Volume 2014 (2014), Article ID 760683, 8 pages
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