Researchers at the University of Miami School of Medicine found that drinking more water daily can dramatically reduce the risk of developing urinary tract infections (UTIs) in women prone to the disease.
Researchers unveiled the findings at the IDWeek 2017.
The study revealed that women who drank 1.5 more liters of water per day had their risk of UTIs reduced by close to a half when compared to women who did not drink more liquids.
Lead author Thomas M. Hooton noted that doctors have suspected more water could decrease the risk of UTI, for a long time, but it is only now that that hypothesis was confirmed by a prospective trial.
Women are at a higher risk of developing UTIs because the female urethra is shorter which means that harmful bacteria in the vagina and rectum can easily reach the bladder.
If one drinks more liquids it is easier for the body to flush the bacteria out. It also reduces the number of bacteria reaching the bladder from the vagina, as harmful bugs are less likely to make the urinary tract their home.
The research involved 140 young women who were diagnosed with at least three cases of UTI over one year and didn’t drink much water. Half of the participants were asked to add 1.5 liters of water to their regular fluid intake every day.
After one year, women who drank more water developed 1.6 urinary tract infections while those in the control group developed 3.1 urinary tract infections. The women who drank more water also reduced the amount of antibiotics by 47 percent, when compared to women in the control group.
From 40% to 60% of women will be affected by at least an instance of UTI during their lifetime. Around 25% are at risk of repeated infections. UTIs are behind 10 million GP visits every year.
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