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.
Leaky Gut Syndrome Symptoms
Leaky gut syndrome, also known as intestinal permeability, is a condition in which bacteria or toxins leak from the small intestine into the bloodstream. In this article, we are going to take a look at leaky gut syndrome symptoms so you can know if you are at risk.
Microbiota is bacteria found in the intestines that help with digestion, protect the intestinal wall, and contribute to immune function. Research shows that a microbiota imbalance in the intestine may trigger the body’s immune response resulting in gut inflammation and intestinal permeability.
The science behind leaky gut syndrome is still developing. And the infancy of it is the reason for tensions between proponents of natural health who diagnose and treat leaky gut and some mainstream medical practitioners who dismiss it.
Because of this, there are no definitive tests to find out whether an individual has leaky gut syndrome, and many people go their whole lives without a diagnosis and proper treatment. If you suspect you may have any of its symptoms, it is advisable to consult with a doctor who will take your concerns seriously.
However, it is widely accepted that leaky gut is a common syndrome among people with autoimmune diseases, such as celiac and Crohn's disease. Still, the evidence that it is an underlying cause of such conditions is not sufficient.
Causes of Leaky Gut Syndrome
The defined causes of the leaky gut syndrome include:
- Chronic stress, which weakens your immunity and undermines your ability to fight off bacteria and viruses
- Preservatives and other chemicals found in foods often causing damage to the intestine's lining, undermining the digestion of gluten
- Excessive consumption of alcohol
- Medications such as non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) and aspirin causing damage to the intestine's lining
- Dysbiosis, the imbalance between the other species in the gut; good and bad bacteria (antibiotics are a leading cause of the imbalance because it kills the good bacteria in the stomach)
- A poor diet that’s heavy on processed foods leading to an overgrowth of yeasts in the intestine
People with the following conditions are also likely to experience leaky gut.
- Autoimmune diseases
- Brain fog
- Chronic fatigue syndrome
- Chronic liver disease
- Unexplained rashes
- Food allergies
- Intestinal infections
- Irritable bowel syndrome (IBS), including ulcerative colitis
- Inflammatory bowel disease (IBD)
- Pancreatic insufficiency
- Polycystic ovary syndrome
- Sinus infections
It is best not to think of the leaky gut as a disease by itself but a means through which toxins invade the body through the gastrointestinal tract and cause other diseases.
Common symptoms of leaky gut syndrome include:
- Chronic diarrhea, constipation, or bloating
- Depression, anxiety, or ADHD
- Nutritional deficiencies
- Skin problems including eczema and rashes
- Joint pain
The most effective treatment for leaky gut syndrome is a diet that supports gut health and eliminates stressors such as:
- Gluten and wheat-based products
- Dairy products, including milk and cheese
- Refined oils including canola, sunflower, safflower, and soybean oil
- Highly refined foods and snacks such as crackers, potato chips, sugary cereals, among others
- Artificial sweeteners
- Salad dressings and sauces such as soy, teriyaki, and hoisin sauce
- Drinks with soy, caffeine, refined sugar, carbonated beverages, and alcohol
Foods that support gut health include:
- Greens such as arugula, beetroot, broccoli, cabbage, carrots, kale, spinach, ginger, mushrooms, and zucchini
- Fruit fiber from bananas, berries, pineapple, lemon, passion fruit, and papaya
- Roots and tubers including potatoes, sweet potatoes, carrots, turnips, and yams
- Nuts and seeds, including almonds, peanuts, nut-based milk, and chia, flax, and sunflower seeds
- Healthy fats such as omega-3, avocado oil, extra virgin oil, and coconut oil that support brain function
- Meat and eggs — chicken, turkey, and eggs, fish, lean beef, and lamb
- Cultured dairy products such as yogurt, kefir, and sauerkraut are known to support brain activity
- Healthy beverages including bone broth and coconut milk
Lifestyle adjustments that may prove helpful besides a good diet include:
- Regular exercise
- Measures that ensure you get enough sleep, such as observing a regular bedtime schedule and avoiding blue light around your bedtime
- Avoid antibiotics if necessary
- Quit alcohol and smoking
You could opt to visit a gastroenterologist to help you navigate nutritional choices. Notably, treating Crohn's or celiac disease after a diagnosis will also address leaky gut symptoms. Avoiding stress either by medication or meditation is also effective in addressing intestinal permeability.