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Open Access Publications from the University of California

Cranberry Juice for Prevention of Urinary Tract Infection in Women

  • Author(s): Eagan, Michael
  • et al.

The use of cranberry juice for the treatment and prevention of urinary tract infections (UTI) has long been promoted by physicians and lay people alike. Although the research has been conflicting and controversial, it was once widely believed that cranberry juice possessed bactericidal activity due to the presence of hippuric acid, which was believed to acidify the urine and prevent microbial growth(1,2). More recently, it has been discovered that cranberries possess in high concentration a class of compounds known as anthocyanidins, that have been shown to effectively inhibit the adhesion of E. coli, the most common causative agent in UTI, to urinary epithelium (3, 4). Recent research suggests that these anthocyanidins may cause a 50% reduction in recurrence of UTI when cranberry juice is consumed at doses of 100 - 300 mL per day (5, 6), however more research is needed to conclusively prove beneficence. No research exists to support the use of cranberry juice as a treatment for UTI, however.

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