American researchers have found that drinking an additional 1.4 liters of water a day may help keep urinary system infections away in women who are inclined to them.
Led by Dr. Thomas M. Hooton, clinical director of the Division of Infectious Diseases, University of Miami School of Medicine, the analysis viewed 140 healthy premenopausal women who had at least 3 UTIs within the last year and reported low daily fluid intake.
Women are more likely to suffer from UTIs than men partly because in women the urethra is shorter, meaning it is simpler for bacteria to travel from the rectum and vagina to the bladder and cause infection.
Half of the women were told to drink 1.5 liters of water a day in addition to their usual daily fluid intake, while the other half offered as the control group and continued their usual daily fluid intake.
The women were followed for one year, with the researchers finding that on average, women in the water group increased their daily water intake by 1.15 liters and experienced a total daily fluid intake (including water and other beverages) of 2.8 liters.
Women in the control group, however, didn’t boost the amount of water they drank in any way and had a complete daily fluid consumption of 1 – 1.2 liters.
By the end of the one year, the team discovered that women in the control group had typically 3.1 UTIs.However, those who were simply drinking extra water got 1.6 UTIs on average, a 48 % reduction.
This also meant that as a result, women in water group took fewer antibiotics to help fight infections, taking typically 1.8 courses in comparison to 3.5 in the control group, a reduced amount of 47 %.
As well as meaning the women suffered less from uncomfortable UTI attacks, reducing the utilization of antibiotics is also important as it can help decrease the threat of antibiotic resistance.
Hooton explained that taking in more liquids can lessen the chance of the UTI by increasing how often bacteria are flushed from the bladder, and by lowering the focus of bacteria that enter the bladder from the vagina.
“While doctors have long assumed this is the case and frequently recommended that women in danger for UTIs increase their liquid intake, it’s never really undergone a potential trial before,” he added, “It’s good to learn the suggestion is valid, and that drinking water is a simple and safe way to prevent an uncomfortable and annoying infection.”
The findings should be presented at IDWeek 2017, the annual conference of the Infectious Diseases Society of America.