A Soak Could Help You Find Some Relief Urinary tract infections are one of the most common outpatient consultations in the United States. They are one of the most common causes of fever in the young and elderly and can cause urinary incontinence in women. Yearly, around 250,000 cases of kidney infections or pyelonephritis occur among women in the United States. Costs for the diagnosis and management of urinary tract infections in the United States can reach up to a total of $2-3 billion dollars a year. It might seem like a simple infection, but it can be really costly when you think of it from that scale. It is an essential infection to treat because it can lead to serious complications such as sepsis and renal damage if left untreated. That is why a lot of other remedies are being tested to see if they can alleviate symptoms of urinary tract infections. This article will discuss how Epsom salt baths are good for UTIs, what benefits Epsom salt baths have, and how to prepare an Epsom salt bath. What are Urinary Tract Infections? What are the Symptoms? Urinary tract infections are infections of the parts that serve as the passageway of the urine out of our bodies; this includes the kidney, bladder, ureters, and urethra. Urine is a sterile substance that passes out of our bodies; therefore, the introduction of bacteria can lead to a bladder infection, inflammation, and pus formation that can lead to various symptoms. Symptoms of a urinary tract infection include pain and burning sensation while urinating, cloudy or foul-smelling urine, blood in the urine, and abdominal pain. What are Epsom Salts? What Do They Do? Epsom salt or magnesium sulfate is a white, crystalline water-soluble chemical compound that has been used for centuries to treat various illnesses. Epsom salts are commonly used to relieve sore muscles, stiff joints, itching, skin irritation, and sunburn and are used as relief for headaches or foot pain. Its uses in the human body are varied, and it has been found to provide relief for various ailments, which include urinary tract infections. How is an Epsom Salt Bath Good for UTIs? What Benefits do Epsom Salt Baths Have? Epsom salts provide several benefits for treating urinary tract infections. The primary benefit of using Epsom salt baths for bladder infections or urinary tract infections is to relieve pain. Epsom salt baths can help relieve pain and discomfort associated with UTIs. UTIs present with a burning sensation, pain while urinating, and cloudy urine. The warm, calming nature of Epsom salt baths has been shown to help relieve this. [youmaylike] If you soak in an Epsom salt bath, it can be helpful to reduce inflammation as well. Because they are rich in magnesium, they can help cleanse the urinary tract and aid in the healing process. The increased concentration of magnesium sulfate is believed to help change the environment in the urinary tract, which can lead to conditions unfavorable for bacteria to grow. It can help prevent bacteria from growing or multiplying when you soak in an Epsom salt bath and has a disinfectant property. Epsom salt baths can also improve the circulation of blood in the body. It can cause dilation of the blood vessels leading to improved blood flow, which also promotes the passage of cells that help in the body’s immunity. Epsom salt baths provide an overall relaxing and calming experience that can leave you feeling detoxified as well. Are Epsom Salt Baths the Answer to UTIs? Although Epsom salt baths may relieve urinary tract infection symptoms, there is not enough evidence to recommend using Epsom salts over established treatments like antibiotics. Epsom salt baths are currently home remedies that can be adjuncts to treatment but cannot be used to replace the treatment of urinary tract infections with antibiotic medications. In order to treat the infection, you should still take an antibiotic regimen prescribed by your physician. Are Epsom Salt Baths Risk-Free? Do Epsom Salt Baths Have Any Side Effects? Generally, Epsom salt baths are safe and don’t have a lot of serious complications. However, you still need to make sure that Epsom salt baths are safe for you. The most common side effects of Epsom salt baths include allergic reactions. So if you have an allergy to Epsom salt, it is better that you avoid this. It can also aggravate pain or discomfort if you have an open wound or breaks or scratches in the skin. If you have these, stay away from Epsom salt baths to avoid further complications. How Do You Prepare an Epsom Salt Bath? The general way to prepare an Epsom salt bath is to dissolve Epsom salt in warm water. Epsom salt is easy to find and can easily be bought in health and grocery stores. Recommendations include dissolving 1 to 2 cups of Epsom salt in a gallon of warm water to create a water-soak bath. It is important not to put too much to avoid irritation and drying of the skin. Let the Epsom salt dissolve in the water, which can take about a few minutes. If you have a bathtub, you can prepare it to submerge and soak in it. However, this can be done as you shower as well. When you have a bladder infection or a urinary tract infection, you can do a water soak for 15-20 minutes to help relieve symptoms. Rinse after every water soak. This can be done daily or on an average of 2-3 times per week. Doing this soak gives ample time in providing relief until the antibiotics start doing their work and control further growth and multiplication of bacteria, completely eliminating symptoms such as pain. If you think you have a urinary tract infection, consult your physician for an evaluation. Further, you should seek medical attention if you are experiencing any serious side effects from using Epsom salt baths. There are no studies that show that using an Epsom salt bath for UTIs will prevent or cure a urinary tract infection, so it is still important to go to the doctor for proper management. Talk to your doctor if you are experiencing symptoms of a urinary tract infection.
Diet for Bariatric Surgery
If you have tried everything within your power to lose weight or you have a health condition that prevents you from losing weight, your doctor may suggest bariatric surgery. Frequently called gastric bypass, this type of procedure often involves sealing off the top of the stomach, which decreases the amount of food you can consume and reduces nutrient absorption. As a result, it’s much easier to lose any excess weight. But what should a diet for bariatric surgery include and what can help you recover? In this article, we are going to explore all the foods, supplements and vitamins you might want to consider after your bariatric surgery. Let’s dive in!
Post-Bariatric Surgery Diet Tips
After bariatric surgery, you need to be cautious about what you consume. It’s recommended to:
- Drink at least 64 ounces of water each day.
- Delay drinking anything after a meal for 30 minutes.
- Eat slowly.
- Consume protein-rich foods.
- Avoid alcohol.
- Limit caffeine.
- Thoroughly chew each and every bite.
Initially, you will be only allowed to consume liquids. This gives your stomach (and body) time to heal and recover. Some of these liquids may include:
Broth is gentle and soothing on the digestive tract. In fact, it is frequently recommended for those with digestive issues due to its healing capabilities. Bone broth, in particular, contains protein and various minerals that help with your gut lining, ensuring you obtain adequate nutrition.
2. Unsweetened Juice
Added sugars may irritate your stomach and digestive tract. Thus, choose unsweetened juices that naturally contain plenty of vitamins and minerals that can accelerate the healing and recovery process. You can also slowly suck on a popsicle or gelatin that is sugar-free.
3. Decaffeinated Tea or Coffee
Caffeine should be avoided due to its stimulatory effects on the digestive system (which can mean you end up absorbing next to no nutrients from your food post-surgery). However, you can try decaffeinated varieties, receiving plenty of antioxidants and other nutrients.
Milk can help you obtain adequate calcium and protein. Go for skim or 1% to avoid overloading your digestive system with too much fat.
After a week of good tolerability of liquids, you will move on to pureed foods, making your diet a little more interesting! Typically, this means eating about three to six snacks or meals each day, with each meal taking about 30 minutes to consume. Here’s what this stage of the bariatric diet will include:
5. Pureed Fruits and Veggies
Fruits and vegetables boost tons of nutrients that your body needs on a regular basis. They also come jam-packed with antioxidant and gut-friendly compounds, helping your digestive tract heal and get back on track post-surgery.
6. Pureed Lean Ground Meat
While this might not sound ultra-appetizing, your body needs protein to heal and repair. Protein is the building block of the body, which means it is essential for improving your digestion as you recover.
7. Soft Scrambled Eggs
Pureed foods further include soft scrambled eggs! Make sure not to overcook them, as this may make them tricky to eat.
You can also enjoy various soups during this second week, allowing you to add variety to your daily diet.
Phase 3 and 4
From here, you can begin introducing soft foods, such as:
- Ground meat.
- Flaky fish.
- Cottage cheese.
- Cooked veggies.
The following week, if all goes well, you can then introduce solid foods a little bit at a time.
Supplements, Vitamins and Minerals
Your doctor may further recommend certain supplements to guide your recovery and replace any foods you are unable to eat for the first few weeks. This is essential to prevent nutrient deficiencies and adverse health effects. Some supplements that you may be recommended include:
The intake of 1,200 milligrams to 2,000 milligrams of calcium can help prevent bone loss. This is especially important if you aren’t drinking milk (such as those that don’t tolerate lactose very well).
10. Vitamin D
Vitamin D can be taken alongside calcium. It’s recommended to take 800 to 1,000 international units of vitamin D. Alternatively, you can also obtain vitamin D via the sun, which may mean your doctor can recommend sitting outside in the sun for 15 to 20 minutes each day.
11. Vitamin B12
B12 is an essential bariatric vitamin for energy production and is necessary for healing! It also may be hard to obtain initially when consuming only liquids since it is often found in meat and animal products. Aim for 500 micrograms daily.
12. Folic Acid and Iron
Your doctor may further recommend folic acid or iron, especially if you are a woman who is currently menstruating. These are commonly lost via your monthly bleed. Yet, with restrictions around what you can eat, they may be hard to replenish, so supplementation may be best.
Post-Bariatric Surgery Medications
Post-bariatric surgery medications may include:
- Omeprazole. This prevents ulcers from developing. It is usually recommended to take within the first six months post-surgery.
- Ursodiol. This helps stop the production of gallstones, which commonly occur after this type of surgery. This medication is also typically taken for at least six months after bariatric surgery.
- Multivitamins. While technically not a medication, almost every person post-bariatric surgery will be recommended a multivitamin to take in order to prevent nutrient deficiencies, as the initial bariatric diet is quite restrictive.
At the end of the day, it is important to follow your doctor’s orders and advice since they know you and your situation best.