Hematuria is loss of blood in the urine. It is usually a sign of an underlying medical condition. It can either be gross hematuria or microscopic hematuria. Gross hematuria is when blood can be seen in urine by the naked eye, and microscopic hematuria is when the blood is not visible to the naked eye, but the cells can be seen by microscopic examination.
The causes of hematuria include urinary tract infection, kidney stones, tumors of kidney, bladder and prostate, trauma to any part of the urinary tract, strenuous exercise/activity, certain drugs such as blood thinners including heparin, warfarin or aspirin, penicillins, sulfa containing drugs and cyclophosphamide. Glomerulonephritis can occur as a result of certain viral and bacterial infections can also lead to hematuria. Bleeding disorders such as hemophilia and von-Willibrand’s disease can also result in blood in urine.
Lifestyle Changes For Hematuria
Although the treatment for hematuria is based on the underlying cause, but a few lifestyle changes can prevent and cure hematuria. Drinking lots of water is a good lifestyle change for hematuria. Staying hydrated is very important as it will help in clearing the urinary system. It is recommended to drink at least eight glasses of water every day. Cigarette smoking should also be avoided as it has been linked to urinary tract cancers. Sometimes hematuria can also result due to an intense workout program/strenuous activity or exercise. The condition will resolve on its own once you switch to a less-intense workout program. The condition mostly improves within one to two days of stopping the vigorous routine.
Use of drugs that might lead to hematuria should be avoided. When the hematuria is caused by a urinary tract infection, then it is advised to not hold urine in the urinary tract for a lengthy amount of time because it can lead to multiplication of bacteria within the urinary tract. It becomes important to drink loads of water to flush out the bacteria and urinate as often as possible. It is also beneficial to have unsweetened cranberry juice as it is known to help with the UTI’s. Having probiotic foods are a good lifestyle change for hematuria. Eating fermented foods rich in probiotics and also taking probiotic supplements are helpful because they hinder the growth of bad bacteria and increase the population of good bacteria in the body thus preventing infections.
In men, the problem of enlarged prostate gland increases with age and since the prostate wraps around the urethra, while the urine passes through an enlarged prostate it can cause urination problems along with hematuria. According to researchers consumption of pumpkin seed oil has shown improvement in men with enlarged prostate symptoms within a time span of three to four months. It is also important to maintain a healthy weight and exercise regularly to boost prostate health. Restriction of alcohol and limiting caffeine while increasing intake of healthy food rich in omega 3 fatty acid have proven to be beneficial.
To avoid kidney stones certain food should be avoided or reduced in diet as much as possible. These foods include spinach, rhubarb, tomatoes, peanuts; caffeinated beverages, grape fruit juice, processed meat and conventional dairy products are high in oxalic acid that lead to development of stones in the kidney. Having a diet rich in green leafy vegetables along with magnesium rich foods and high quality water will help decrease the development of kidney stones. Consumption of hot water with lemon juice daily helps in prevention of formation of kidney stones. Sprouted grains should be consumed instead of refined grain products as it will limit your intake of phytic acid which works as an anti-nutrient.
Sometimes blood in urine can be an early sign of bladder cancer with little or no pain in early stages. But it does not always mean that all cases of hematuria will have cancer. Frankincense oil works as a natural treatment for bladder cancer. It is known to activate pathways that lead to cancer cell death.
Although it is not an alarming condition in most of the cases, but a visit to doctor must be immediately made in order to avoid complications and find out the underlying cause. It is also important to get early treatment for better prognosis in the long run.