Living with a leaky bladder can be embarrassing, but first and foremost, you should know that you are not alone. Thousands of Americans leak when they cough, sneeze, or laugh, and many more have such a strong urgency to go to the bathroom that they often can’t make it in time.
There are several factors that come into play when discussing urinary incontinence including childbirth, old age, and medical conditions. What you do need to know is that urinary incontinence doesn’t need to take over your life and there are simple ways you can take back control of your bladder.
One of those remedies involves eating the right diet to promote overall bladder health. On the other hand, eating the wrong foods can worsen your urinary incontinence. Here you will learn about the right diet to control urgency and leaks.
Diet to support a healthy bladder
A large factor that contributes to urge incontinence is weight. Being overweight puts added pressure on the bladder, which creates the urge to go. Eating a diet that supports a healthy weight can go a long way in reducing urgency.
Another recommendation in treating urge incontinence is to cut back on your hydration, but this can actually be counteractive. When you don’t drink enough fluids, your urine becomes concentrated. When this occurs, urine can irritate the bladder, which in turn causes a greater urgency to urinate. So, if you aren’t flushing out your bladder, you’re allowing urine to sit. It becomes a breeding ground for bacteria, which leads to infections and greater incontinence—notice the vicious cycle?
To determine how your hydration levels are, take a moment to look in the toilet before flushing. The darker the urine, the more dehydrated you are. Your urine will be a pale-yellow color if you are properly hydrated.
One word of advice when considering hydration: it’s best that you don’t drink too much fluid prior to bed, or else you will be up numerous times a night. Instead, drink most of your fluids during the day and ween yourself as the day winds down.
Experts have uncovered certain foods that can be triggers for urinary urgency. These foods include alcohol, caffeine, dairy, sugar, sweeteners, corn syrup, honey, tomato-based foods, and spicy foods. Limiting or avoiding these foods can help reduce urinary urgency.
Diet swaps to support a healthy bladder
The below chart will help you easily swap out bladder triggering foods for bladder friendly-foods to reduce urgency.
|Instead of||Replace with|
|Creamy soups||Broth-based soups with plenty of vegetables|
|Quiche and salad||Soup and steamed vegetables or grilled chicken or fish and salad|
|Chicken, friend steak||Grilled skinless chicken or lean red meat|
|Potatoes with sour cream||Baked sweet potato without gravy|
|Creamy coleslaw||Sautéed vegetables or salad|
|Sundaes or ice cream||Fresh fruit on kebab or salad or cut up frozen fruits|
|Past with cream or tomato-based sauces||Steamed rice or sushi, quinoa or legumes|
|Cheesy or garlic bread||Low glycemic index bread or toast and make a avocado spread|
These diet tips can be applied at home and when you’re eating out. By incorporating a bladder-friendly diet into your treatment plan, you can achieve greater bladder control along with overall improved bladder health.