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Urinary Infection Tea

Ingredients

1 teaspoon uva ursi*
teaspoon each corn silk, cramp bark, marshmallow root and rosehips
1 quart water


Method

Simmer herbs in water for a couple of minutes, and then steep them for 20 minutes. Strain herbs.


Drink 2 to 4 cups daily. To make sure the infection is gone; continue taking the herbs for 2 days after the symptoms disappear.

*Uva ursi (Arctostaphylos uva ursi), also known as bearberry because bears like eating the fruit, has been used medicinally as far back as the 2nd century. Native Americans used it as a remedy for urinary tract infections; in fact, until the discovery of sulfa drugs and antibiotics, uva ursi was a common treatment for such bladder and related infections. Through modern-day scientific research in test tubes and animals, researchers have discovered that uva ursi's antibacterial properties, which can fight infection, are due to several chemicals, including hydroquinone. The herb also contains tannins that have astringent effects, helping to shrink and tighten mucous membranes in the body. That, in turn, helps reduce inflammation and fight infection.

Today, uva ursi is sometimes used to treat urinary tract infections and cystitis (bladder inflammation). Researchers believe that for it to be most effective, a person's urine needs to be alkaline --acid destroys the herb's antibacterial effect. However, no tests have been done in humans, so it is not possible to say whether uva ursi really works in people.

In addition, uva ursi can be toxic: Hydroquinone can cause serious liver damage. Conventional medications that have fewer risks are available to treat urinary tract infections.

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