Cranberry for bladder infections

Cranberry is a commonly used natural remedy for bladder infections. It is all natural and has no side effects. It is easy to get hold of most of the time. It comes in different forms including juice, powder and tablets. Some forms are more effective than others. It is also an easy treatment to take as it tastes good.

Cranberry Juice:

Cranberry juice is commonly used home remedy for bladder infections
Cranberry Juice

If you are going to have cranberry juice – it is important to drink unsweetened juice. Cranberries are a fairly bitter fruit and most of the juice you find around easily and fast is sweetened. It is very important that you don't drink something sugary as sugar aggravates bladder infections.


Before I understood how much of an effect sugar had on causing bladder infections, I used sweetened cranberry juice as well as a ton of water and my bladder infections would often go away. However a lot of the time, they would also come back a couple of days later.

I wouldn't recommend this as the most trustworthy approach. If this is all you can get your hands on, give it a go. But you might get better results just by drinking a LOT of water.


In my experience unsweetened cranberry juice can be quite effective in getting rid of bladder infections. However I have found it hard to get hold of. Not many shops in my area stock it and can be difficult to track down and explain if you are in a foreign country. If you are drinking unsweetened cranberry juice, sometimes just having a little of this once a week can be enough to prevent bladder infections. However there are more reliable options I would recommend.

Cranberry extract (D-Mannose):

I have used this successfully to get rid of a lot of bladder infections in the past. You can get in a tablet form or a powder. It is available online or through pharmacy's which makes it really nice and easy to get hold of most of the time.


Cranberry extract powder is my pick in using cranberry to get rid of a bladder infection
Cranberry Extract powder is sweet and works fast!

I have had the most success with the cranberry extract powder. It is a white powder which you mix into water and drink. It tastes slightly sweet but not a strong taste of anything and is easy to drink. You can dilute it right down with lots of water so you can barely taste it. I imagine of all the treatments if you were treating a child, this would be the easiest to get a child to take.

On the back of the bottle it says it takes 24 hours to be effective. Luckily it usually works much faster than this! Often it can work after the first dose and usually within 2-3 doses it will work.

However in my experience if it hasn't made a significant difference after 3-4 doses, then it is not going to work. It seems to be very effective for when dealing with a bladder infection caused by candida but if this is not the cause then it doesn't matter how much you take it, it is not going to fix anything. If you haven't noticed you are getting any better after 5 or so doses of the cranberry extract, I would recommend trying something else.


The tablets have never really had much of an effect on me with my bladder infections – although perhaps I wasn't taking a high enough strength per pill. They may have an effect on preventing bladder infections but I would think there are some more simple and effective changes you could make that would make a difference before I did this.

The Science behind the cranberry extract:

Cranberry extract or D-mannose is a sugar extract taken from the cranberry, used to help in treating bladder infections.

But I just told you to avoid sugar!?!

There are a lot of different types of natural sugars in food and this is not one that you would sprinkle on your Weetbix.

One of the most common causes of bladder infections are candida from the stomach travelling down too far. See candida page for more details.

Cranberry extract can work to latch onto this candida and take it out of the bladder tract. It leaves all the good bacteria that is supposed to be in the urinary system and pulls the candida out with it.