Let’s talk about happy bladders, shall we? The type of bladder that doesn’t spontaneously spritz when you sneeze or have you running to the toilet like a sprinter. Without a doubt, a happy bladder can make a world of difference in your everyday life. But it can also seem so foreign when you’re dealing with leaks. So, what should you do to keep your bladder happy and healthy? What foods soothe the bladder?
What Foods Soothe The Bladder?
I don’t know about everyone else, but my high school health class definitely never touched on maintaining a happy bladder. Or really on bladder health at all. But a little research has taught me that what you eat is partially responsible for your bladder’s “mood.” Now, I’m not saying you have to give up everything you love to chow down on in favor of bland and boring foods. We’re not into absolutes here at Lily Bird when it comes to diet. But, some of the snacks you’re munching on could be giving you a case of overactive bladder. So, if you’re looking for foods that will soothe your bladder, here are a few to your grocery list.
1. Potatoes Prevent Pelvic Floor Problems
High-fiber foods like potatoes can prevent damage to your pelvic floor caused by straining to go number two. By upping your fiber intake and eliminating this pressure, your pelvic floor is free to respond to your body’s movements during the day and help keep leaks back. Plus, potatoes are a delicious and versatile food. Other fiber rich foods to try include chickpeas, oats, almonds, and chia seeds.
2. Make Friends With Non-Acidic Foods
Acidic foods are usually bladder irritants. So when going through the produce section, keep an eye out for fruits and veggies that have a low acid content. Pears are a tasty fruit that aren’t acidic either. Plus, pears are a great source of fiber, which is great for the pelvic floor. Some other non-acidic fruits to keep an eye out for include watermelon and blueberries.
3. Foods With Vitamin D Are An Eggs-cellent Choice
Did you know a lack of Vitamin D3 is associated with frequent bladder leaks? One study showed that Vitamin D receptors are present in the pelvic floor muscles and can influence the development of urinary incontinence. In other words, if you have enough Vitamin D, then you may be able to keep your bladder protected and happy. One of the most Vitamin D-enriched foods is eggs, so stock up next time you hit the grocery store. And then spend a few minutes soaking up the sun because being outside is another way to get your daily dose of Vitamin D.
4. Packed Full of Protein: Chicken
A little extra lean protein makes for a happy and healthy bladder, too. Chicken can help to soothe the bladder because it’s less irritating than other proteins. Just avoid any chicken or other meats that are processed, smoked, or canned. These contain nitrates which can trigger leaks.
5. Green Beans
For when you want a little more color on your plate, green beans are a great veggie that will not cause any bladder irritation. It’s a versatile veggie that’s great to incorporate into any dish.
6. Fresh Herbs
Sage, marjoram, and basil are great examples of some of the fresh herbs you can stock up on to replace condiments that may be leading to an irritated bladder. Cayenne pepper, paprika, chili powder, and hot curry powder are spices that can throw the bladder into a frenzy. For some, even common condiments like ketchup and mustard are triggers. So, swapping those out for flavorful bladder-soothing herbs can be a great choice.
7. Chamomile/Peppermint Tea
A healthy fluid intake is always essential for a happy bladder. Though it is best to limit carbonated and caffeinated drinks, teas like chamomile and peppermint can actually soothe the bladder. So stock up on a couple of tea bags the next time you’re grocery shopping. Your bladder will thank you for it.
8. Don’t Forget Your Nuts
Nuts like almonds, peanuts, and cashews are great to snack on, rich in protein, and don’t cause any bladder discomfort. They’re also a perfect pantry staple and easy to bring with you if you want to snack on the go.
9. Whole Grains
Whole grains can encompass a variety of foods, such as quinoa, oats, and rice, to name a few. Many of these foods are basic things you already have in your pantry.
Do Away With Bladder Blues
No one wants an unhappy bladder. Irritation, leaks, and so on can really become a thorn in your side. By eating certain foods and avoiding others (i.e. acidic foods, caffeine, spicy foods), you can help to soothe your bladder. Plan ahead, and continue to cook the meals you love, with some minor adjustments. By just replacing some of the ingredients in your favorite recipes with foods that soothe the bladder, you’ll probably notice less frequent bladder irritation. Let us know how it goes!
By Jessica Thomas, MPH