Drinking An Extra 1.5 Liters Of Water Each Day Can Help Prevent UTIs

One of the worst feelings in the world is when you gotta run to the bathroom and can feel a UTI coming on. Right? It's awful! If you are one of those women who feel they're prone to getting urinary tract infection, or UTI's, then it might just be your lucky day because a new experiment is offering some fresh evidence for an easy and free way to prevent them from happening on the regular: drinking an extra 1.5 liters of water each day. Time to make sure you have a water bottle handy.

The study looked at 140 women who experience recurring UTIs who typically drank fewer than 1.5 liters of fluid (about six 8-ounce glasses) a day. For a period of 12 months, the researchers asked half of these women to continue their usual water intake and asked the other half to drink an additional 1.5 liters of water daily. Over the course of that year, women who drank more water had an average of 1.7 UTIs, compared with 3.2 on average for women who didn’t add extra water to their diets, the study found. That's a pretty big difference.

Dr. Thomas M. Hooton, of the University of Miami Miller School of Medicine and lead author on this study has highlighted the fact that every woman with recurring urinary tract infection issues should strongly take a look at their daily water intake into consideration and really try to increase it to at least two to three liters a day.

filling up a glass of water
Credit: iStock / sonsam

The women who were involved in the current study were in good health, but they had reported at least three UTIs in the previous year - with at least one being including at least confirmed by a clinician with urine tests. All of the participants also reported drinking less than 1.5 liters of fluid on a daily basis to begin with.

JAMA Internal Medicine notes that approximately half of women will experience at least one UTI at some point in their life. Furthermore, once women do have that first UTI, 27 percent of them will have another one within six months, and 44 percent to 70 percent will have another UTI within a year. That's a whole lot of UTIs if you're not being careful!

While there has pretty much always been a link between staying hydrated and a decreased chance of getting a urinary tract infection, until now, there really hasn't been data to back it up. While it is still difficult to truly pinpoint an exact amount of water that women need to drink in order to help prevent these recurring UTIs, it all comes down to the theory that more water means more urine, which essentially will flush the bad bacteria out of your body.

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