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Herbal Education At The Academy: Urinary System
By Meagan - October 16, 2015

Herbal Education At The Academy: Urinary System

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 System

What 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
Interesting Things I Learned Below you'll find 3 things that stood out to me most about this unit of study in HANE's Intermediate Herbal Course.
  1. 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.
  2. 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.
  3. 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.
A Recipe To Share The following is a formula you can make and use as an infusion when you think you may be getting a UTI. UTI INFUSION Ingredients: Directions:
  1. Add one teaspoon of the above blend to 8 ounces of hot water.
  2. Infuse 10-15 minutes.
  3. Drink hot, 4-5 times a day.
So there you have it! This is what is covered in the ninth unit of The Online Intermediate Herbal Course from the Herbal Academy of New England. Be sure you check out HANE's online herbal programs, introductory, intermediate, and advanced, if you're interested in getting an herbal education that is convenient, affordable, scientific based, and will meet you wherever you're at!
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!
  • https://www.kidney.org/sites/default/files/uti.pdf


  1. Bev
    I didn't really know much about the urinary system until I developed Interstitial Cystitis and now I'm a walking urinary-encyclopedia LOL! One thing is that I've found drinking a lot of water helps IC by diluting the urine, so the acidity will not cause more pain. If I drink below 9 cups a day, I feel it. Also, marshmallow root is awesome for pain, burning and urgency and I believe it is healing my bladder wall. Also staying away from bladder irritants like coffee, tomatoes, citrus and caffeine has helped tremendously.
    1. Meagan
      Thanks for sharing Bev. My mom was actually diagnosed with IC several years ago, and staying away from foods and drinking LOTS of water helped her too. She did take the meds they gave her, and after about a year she didn't have any issues with it any longer. I'm very thankful, but I definitely feel herbs can be helped a lot with IC. There's a whole section in this unit on using herbs specifically for that issue. Thanks for your comment!
  2. Hannah
    Could any of these herbs be harmful if pregnant or at conception? I am so glad to read this post; there's so much good used to learn about herbs! Thank you for sharing!
    1. Meagan
      Hi Hannah! The only info I could find on these herbs was that uva ursi should not be used as it can cause toxicity to the fetus. It's not to be used for more than 2 weeks at a time for adults. Great question!