General Question

todeshaschen's avatar

Why or how exactly does Cranberry juice help with bladder infections?

Asked by todeshaschen (43points) June 13th, 2009

Just wondering since I have paranoid parental who wish me to drink it ‘just in case.’

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10 Answers

casheroo's avatar

“Rich with Vitamin C, the high amount of acid and other beneficial components in cranberry juice can help break down and prevent the formation of kidney stones”
It has many benefits. I would view it more for prevention, but not a cure-all. I drink it all the time, but mainly because I just like the taste.

Mariah's avatar

Dunno for sure about bladder infections, but anything acidic, which cranberry juice very much is, helps to prevent the formation of kidney stones. And preventing kidney stones is worth it. Trust me. (Cringe)

Facade's avatar

I’m not sure but it works wonders. Make sure to drink the kind with no added sugar. Or, better yet, eat cranberry sauce with the whole berries.

crisw's avatar

“A new study by researchers at Worcester Polytechnic Institute (WPI) reveals that the juice changes the thermodynamic properties of bacteria in the urinary tract, creating an energy barrier that prevents the microorganisms from getting close enough to latch onto cells and initiate an infection.”
Science Daily

Darwin's avatar

Apparently some recent research has found that a specific type of tannin (called proanthocyanidin) found only in cranberries and blueberries interacts with the little projections (called fimbriae) on the Escherichia coli (E. coli) bacteria (the most common cause of UTI), preventing them from sticking to the walls of the bladder and causing infection. That means it will help prevent infections from starting, but won’t get rid of an existing infection. For that you need antibiotics.

Apparently the beneficial bacteria lack fimbriae and so are not affected by cranberry juice. However, the bacteria that cause dental plaque do have fimbriae and so are affected by the juice (as long as it isn’t full of sugar).

Unsweetened or lightly sweetened pure cranberry juice is most recommended, and you need to drink about 300–500 ml daily.

Other benefits of cranberry juice are listed here including the fact that it contains Vitamin C, cranberries calcium, folate, iron, magnesium, manganese, phosphorus, potassium, selenium, sulfur, vitamin A, vitamin B-1, Vitamin B-2, vitamin B-3, vitamin B-5, vitamin E, resveratrol, v arious beneficial phytochemicals, and zinc.

evelyns_pet_zebra's avatar

a tiny bit off topic, but the cranberry sauce made with real cranberries is da Bomb!

mcbealer's avatar

@evelyns_pet_zebra ~ especially the cranberry relish that also has a bit of orange in it… mmmmm cranberries

casheroo's avatar

I know they say it has something that fights bacteria in the urinary tract, but my father had multiple kidney stones once, and they I believe popped a kidney. They told him not to drink cranberry juice, which I thought was weird. I don’t know why. I still drink it, especially if I get a uti.

crisw's avatar


This was probably because people with kidney stones formed from oxalates need to follow a low oxalate diet and cranberries are high in oxalates.

casheroo's avatar

@crisw Well that makes sense now. Thank you

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