Do you often suffer from a painful bladder? Do you find it difficult to control your bladder at times, when it is extremely necessary to do so? Have you seen a lot of doctors, yet you could not get yourself saved from all the embarrassment? If the answer to all these questions is in affirmative, this article is definitely for you. Here is what exactly your disease is all about and what you should avoid eating to prevent it from growing worse!
Bladder pain syndrome (BPS), technically known as Interstitial cystitis (IC) is a chronic bladder disease. It is a feeling of pain and pressure in the urinary bladder area. This pain is accompanied by several other lower urinary tract symptoms. A person however can be diagnosed with bladder pain syndrome only if these symptoms have lasted for more than 6 weeks, without having an infection or other clear causes.
Bladder Pain Syndrome is often mistaken with Urinary Tract Infection (UTI). These two are completely different in the sense that although the symptoms of the two might sometimes be similar and overlapping, Unlike Urinary Tract Infection (UTI) which of course is itself an infection, Bladder Pain Syndrome, in itself, is devoid of any infections in the body.
Symptoms of this disease range from mild to severe. For some patients the symptoms may come and go irregularly, but for some, they don’t go away very easily. Bladder Pain Syndrome, as stated earlier, is not an infection, but it may feel like a bladder infection. Women with this syndrome may feel pain during sexual intercourse. The more severe cases of this disease can affect your life and your loved ones. For some people, this may result in other health issues such as irritable bowel syndrome, fibromyalgia, and so on.
The question of whether the symptoms of Painful Bladder Syndrome are directly or indirectly linked with the food habits is debatable. While some researches suggest that diet plans are in no way related to Interstitial cystitis, some other researches show that these two parameters are in a host of ways connected. For people belonging to the second category, there are certain food items which noticeably trigger the symptoms of a painful bladder. However, to identify and remember each of these individual items might be quite a task. Therefore, it is often advised to note such effects and changes in a diary and to maintain it religiously to avoid such worsening of the painful symptoms. It is true that these food items that make the Painful Bladder Syndrome worse are different for different people. However, an overall analysis can be made, based on statistics, about which food items are usually least bothering and most bothering for Interstitial cystitis. Some of these are listed below:
Bladder Pain Syndrome(BPS): 11 Foods to Avoid
Certain fruits like apricots, bananas, blueberries, dates, melon (both honeydew and watermelon), prunes, pears, raisins do not affect or trigger the disease in most cases. However, those like cranberry juice, grapefruit and grapefruit juice, lemons, oranges and orange juice, pineapple and pineapple juice, and strawberries seem to make the symptoms of Painful Bladder Syndrome worse. Hence it is always safer to avoid the ones in the second category.
Most vegetables, except a few, can be safely consumed even if one is a victim of Interstitial cystitis. The few vegetables you should avoid consuming include chili peppers, pickles, sauerkraut, tomatoes and tomato products. On the other hand, avocados, asparagus, beets, broccoli, brussels Sprouts, cabbage, carrots, cauliflower, celery, cucumber, eggplant, mushrooms, peas, potatoes (white potatoes, yams, sweet potatoes), radishes, spinach, squash, turnips, and zucchini are considered more or less harmless for this disease.
Grains such as rice and oats do not affect the disease to a considerable extent. In fact, it is safe to consume grains as they do not seem to trigger the symptoms of Painful Bladder Syndrome.
Protein containing food items
Processed sandwich meats such as salami, bologna and soy have been proved to make symptoms of Painful Bladder Syndrome worse. However, some other items like Beef, fish (shrimp, tuna fish and salmon), eggs, nuts, peanut butter, pork, poultry (chicken and turkey), and lamb are relatively harmless.
Yoghurt should strictly be avoided by people suffering from Interstitial cystitis. They may however consume other dairy products such as milk (low-fat and whole) and mild cheese safely.
As far as condiments are concerned, you need to be a bit careful if you are suffering from the Painful Bladder Syndrome. Items such as chili, horseradish, ketchup, salad dressings, soya sauce, vinegar, and Worcester sauce should strictly be done away with. Herbs, garlic or any herb infused olive oil however can safely be consumed.
Beverages, too are a matter of strict concern if symptoms of Interstitial cystitis are bothering you. Avoid intake of alcohol, coffee (both caffeinated and decaffeinated), tea (both caffeinated and decaffeinated), carbonated drinks (cola, non-cola, diet, and caffeine-free). Grain beverages and substitutes of coffee such as Cafix, Pero, Roma, Postum however are safe alternatives.
Additives or Artificial Sweeteners
Artificial sweeteners such as Equal (sweetener), NutraSweet, Saccharin, and Sweet’N Low along with Monosodium glutamate (MSG) should be completely done away with.
Caffeine is one of the worst enemies of Painful Bladder Syndrome. Hence all foods and drinks which contain caffeine, such as chocolates, peanuts, coffee and soft drinks should not be consumed. Certain cuisines like Chinese food, Mexican food and Thai food should also avoided as far as possible.
Any kind of carbonated drinks such as soft drinks and soda should be avoided. These products stimulate the bladder, thus triggering symptoms of Painful Bladder Syndrome.
Spicy food items
Any food item that contains a lot of unnecessary spices should also be avoided as these seem to irritate the bladder leading to more pain.
Any day, it is better to be safe than sorry. Thus, if you are suffering from symptoms of the Painful Bladder Syndrome, make sure you tick these items off your diet list!