The term ‘urology’ refers to the male and female urinary system, including the kidneys, ureters, bladder, and the urethra, as well as the male reproductive organs, the testicles, penis, and prostate. While urological health may not be at the fore of people’s minds when they think of their overall wellbeing, it is clearly extremely important.
Everything from smoking to exercise to diet has an affect on the wellbeing of the urinary system and reproductive organs, the latter being particularly important for long-term urological health.
Without these organs and systems, your body would not be able to function properly. And like other parts of your body, they can be affected by conditions and disease. Common urological conditions include chronic kidney disease, kidney stones, urinary tract infections (UTI), cancer of the prostate, kidney or bladder, and urinary incontinence.
Here are some helpful dietary tips for maintaining optimum urological health.
Water has a plethora of benefits for urological wellbeing, not to mention your overall health. It is an essential ingredient for life, and as a rule of thumb you should drink 2 to 3 litres of water every day to stay healthy.
Maintaining a healthy intake of fluids helps flush toxins from the body, which can help improve kidney and bladder function. It is believed to significantly reduce the risk of kidney disease, bladder infection, and help with constipation, which can cause your bowels to encroach on your bladder causing inflammation and discomfort. It is also important to drink plenty of water to help prevent the occurrence of kidney stones, as water flushes out salts in the urine.
It is very easy to tell if you are dehydrated – just look at your urine. Pale yellow or clear is fine, while a darker yellow means you should drink more water.
While sodium is a necessary mineral in your body, too much can have adverse affects on your health, particularly your urological wellbeing. You need around 1,500 milligrams of sodium each day for normal bodily function. And while this may seem like a lot, it is only around 3 grams of salt, which is easy to overshoot.
Your kidneys require a fine balance of sodium and potassium for proper function. Too much salt in your diet can contribute to high blood pressure, which can lead to kidney disease. Very high consumption can also contribute to the occurrence of kidney stones and bladder stones.
Meat is acidic and can irritate the bladder, while lowering gluten intake can help to reduce irritation and decrease urinary urgency, frequency, and incontinence.
Fibre is the indigestible component of plant foods, such as vegetables, fruits, grains, beans and legumes. It is very important for your digestive health, particularly for the bladder. It helps regulate bowel movements by absorbing water into stool, making it easier to pass. This decreases the chance of constipation, which can cause inflammation of the bladder.
Increase consumption of rich in zinc, essential fatty acids, selenium, all of which crucial for male reproductive health. Seafood, seeds and vegetables are excellent sources of these nutrients – do some research and start integrating them into your diet.
While a balanced diet featuring lots of fruit and vegetables is great for your overall health, there are some fruits that can irritate the bladder, such as those that are highly acidic. Citrus, grapes and tomatoes should be limited if you have a sensitive bladder. Blueberries and pears are a great alternative and have been linked with good urological health.
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