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A review article confirms benefits of cranberries to prevent urinary tract infections
A recent review article in Archives of Internal Medicine, a leading scientific medical journal, once again confirms that cranberry-containing products prevent urinary tract infections [1].

The review confirmed that women, suffering from recurrent urinary tract infections (UTIs), had almost 50% reduction in incidence.

For children this percentage was even more striking. Researchers of the National Taiwan University, who performed the review, found a reduction of 67% of bladder infections. This is important, since benefits of prophylactic use of antibiotics in children is found to be small [2].
Moreover, prophylactic use of antibiotics results in resistance against these antibiotics as well as against other frequently prescribed antibiotics, which is of great concern.

The review included 13 placebo controlled clinical trials examining the effect of cranberry-containing products such as cranberry juice (9 trials) and cranberry supplements (4 trials).

The cranberry juice groups appeared to benefit more than the groups taking cranberry supplements, which can be explained by the effect of a greater fluid intake.
Drinking plenty of water is important to ward of an UTI.

Compliance of drinking several glasses of cranberry juice each day was difficult leading to quite a number of drop-outs in the cranberry juice groups. Besides ,a disadvantage of drinking cranberry juice is the sugar content of these juices.

The review supports the consumption of cranberry-containing products for preventing UTIs, especially in women and children suffering from recurrent UTIs.

Studies comparing cranberries with the standard therapy for prevention of UTIs (antibiotics) were not included in the meta-analysis. Only studies comparing cranberries with placebo were included.

Results of studies which did compare cranberries with standard therapy (Amsterdam AMC – Dundee) [3-4] showed similar results in reducing recurrent UTIs as the studies included in the meta-analysis (40 to 50%), although antibiotics were twice as effective as cranberries in the Amsterdam study.

While antibiotics are obviously effective, growing concern has arisen about the emerging antibiotic resistance in primary healthcare, which can occur within a month after a single cure and can last up to one year in cases of more frequent cures.
Furthermore many women worry about the adverse side effects of taking drugs.

In an editorial article in Future Microbiology [5] Dr. Suzanne Geerlings of the Amsterdam University AMC stated that “premenopausal women with recurrent UTIs are commonly recommended to take low-dose antibiotics. However, this may lead to resistance of not only the causative microorganisms, but also of the indigenous flora”.

In the study of the Amsterdam University with younger women, the number of recurrent UTIs in the cranberry group changed from 7 in the year before the study to 4.2 in the study year. Almost 25% of the women in the cranberry group experienced no UTI at all in the study year.
This was not much different from the 29% of the women in the antibiotic group who remained free of an UTI.

1. Chih-Hung Wang, MD et al. Cranberry-Containing Products for Prevention of Urinary Tract Infections
in Susceptible Populations. Arch. Intern. Med./Vol. 172 (No. 13), July 9, 2012, 988-996.
2. Williams G, Craig JC. Long-term antibiotics for preventing recurrent urinary tract infection in children. Cochrane Database Systematic Review, 2011, Issue 3.
3. Mariëlle A. J. Beerepoot, Suzanne E. Geerlings, MD, PhD et al. Cranberries vs Antibiotics to Prevent Urinary Tract Infections, A Randomized Double-blind Noninferiority Trial in Premenopausal Women. Archives of Internal Medicine. 2011;171(14):1270-1278.
4. Marion E. T. McMurdo et al. Cranberry or trimethoprim for the prevention of recurrent urinary
tract infections? A randomized controlled trial in older women. Journal of Antimicrobial Chemotherapy, 2009 Feb;63(2):389-95.
5. Geerlings SE. Should we prevent or even treat urinary tract infections with cranberries? Future Microbiol. 2011 Dec;6(12):1385-6.

More information:
In the AMC study a cranberry supplement was used with a special production method and composition. For this specific supplement all the vital parts of the whole cranberry are used: skin, seeds, pulp, juice and fiber. All the active ingredients are present in their natural state.

The patented manufacturing process provides a bioactive protection to all parts of the cranberry avoiding destruction by gastric acid. In addition, it gives the cranberry concentrate a regulated release. Not all available cranberry supplements have these functional characteristics.

This study used cranberry specialty Cranaxil supplied by Springfield Nutraceuticals, The Netherlands

Cranaxil cranberry concentrate 500mg.
Available from good health stores, independent drugstore and
The RRP is £13.95 for 30 capsules or £26.95 for 60 capsules.

Cranaxil cranberry concentrate is safe to take, also by children.

For more information:
Springfield Nutraceuticals, The Netherlands, T 0031186626173,
Peter van Hogerhuis, e-mail

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