Did you know that 10,000,000 doctor visits every year are for urinary tract infections and that 1 out of 5 women will have one urinary tract infection in their lifetime. (National Kidney Foundation, 2010) This month's Herbal Education post is not necessarily about urinary tract infections, but it is focused on the entire urinary system and how herbs can be used to keep it healthy. Today, I'll be sharing an overview of what's taught in the 9th unit of the Online Intermediate Herbal Course at the Herbal Academy of New England as well as 3 key takeaways and an herbal formula for a urinary tract infection infusion just in case you ever find yourself needing it.
The Urinary SystemWhat I Studied The ninth unit of The Online Intermediate Herbal Course is all about the urinary system, and it covers some of the following topics.
- anatomy and physiology of the urinary system
- how to urinary system works to maintain balance in the body
- structure and function of the urinary system
- drinks for healthy kidneys
- herbal actions pertaining to the kidneys
- common urinary complaints and herbal remedies
- urinary tract materia medica
- The whole "eight 8-ounce glasses of water a day" rule has no clinical basis. According to the research of Dr. H. Valtin, a specialist in the physiology of body water balance, there are no studies to validate this guideline. Instead, it's suggested that everyone should constantly sip water throughout the day or at the minimum, drink when you feel thirsty. I also found it interesting that they whole idea of already being dehydrated when you feel thirsty doesn't make sense with the way our bodies work as the body begins giving signals for thirst way before dehydration occurs. Of course, ignoring these signals can lead to dehydration.
- With UTIs, there are two ways E. coli attach to the bladder wall... type 1 pili and type 2 pili. Type 2 pili are tricky and are the result of bacteria having been exposed to antibiotics. This creates a stronger bond and allows for pathogenic colonization.
- There are many interconnections between the urinary system and other body systems, particularly the cardiovascular system. When working with a condition that has a component of toxic accumulation, the enhancement of eliminatory systems, like the urinary system, is most often a part of the protocol. Examples include acne and arthritis.
- Add one teaspoon of the above blend to 8 ounces of hot water.
- Infuse 10-15 minutes.
- Drink hot, 4-5 times a day.
Do you have any questions about the programs at The Herbal Academy of New England? Ask away in the comment section below, and I'll answer them in next month's Herbal Education post!REFERENCES: