2265 North Clybourn Avenue    Chicago, IL 60614    P: 773.296.6700     F: 773.296.1131

Uva Ursi

What Is It?

Also referred to as “bearberry” in honor of the bears so fond of its bright red or pink berries, uva ursi (Arctostaphylos uva ursi) is an evergreen shrub that has long been popular for fighting urinary tract infections. Its leathery green leaves are formulated into teas, tinctures, capsules, and extracts for this purpose.

The plant grows throughout colder northern climates from North America to Asia and is particularly popular in Europe for treating urinary tract inflammation. Official physician handbooks in the United States listed uva ursi as a urinary antiseptic for a century up until the 1920s.

The antiseptic compound in uva ursi is arbutin, which the body converts into a substance with proven astringent and bacteria-killing powers called hydroquinone. Interestingly, arbutin taken alone is not as effective as the whole uva ursi plant in controlling urinary tract infections. That’s because intestinal bacteria can break down arbutin, but they are less likely to do so in the presence of other uva ursi compounds.

To effectively fight a urinary tract infection with uva ursi, your urine must be alkaline. You may be able to help maintain an alkaline pH by consuming plenty of dairy products and non-citrus fruits. By the same token, avoid taking uva ursi with substances that have the reverse effect–acidifying the urine–such as citrus fruits, tomatoes, and vitamin C supplements.

In addition to its antiseptic and astringent actions, uva ursi may help to flush out bacteria by promoting urination.

General Interaction

There are no known drug or nutrient interactions associated with uva ursi.

Cautions

Many people experience urinary tract infections as a frequent urge to urinate and a burning or otherwise painful sensation when voiding. Consult a doctor if these kinds of signs or symptoms persist for more than 24 to 36 hours because potentially serious complications can develop, including kidney problems.

While some people with sensitive stomachs develop nausea and vomiting with uva ursi, the herb appears to be quite safe for most people when taken at commonly recommended doses. However, high doses can cause a disconcerting–although apparently harmless–greenish-brown discoloration of the urine.

Extremely high doses of uva ursi, in the range of 10 times greater than the commonly recommended amount, can cause vomiting, ringing in the ears, shortness of breath, convulsions, and collapse in some cases. Liver damage is also a risk with high doses taken over extended periods of time.

Because of a lack of information regarding safety, people with kidney disease, pregnant women, and breast-feeding mothers should not take uva ursi. Large doses may stimulate uterine contractions during pregnancy.

Don’t take uva ursi for more than 7 to 10 days at a time, and limit your overall use of uva ursi to no more than 5 treatment cycles a year.

Ailments-Dosage

Urinary Tract Infections 500 mg, or 1/2 tsp. liquid extract, 4 times a day for 1 week


Join our Newsletter

Get health recommendations, delicious and time-saving recipes, medical news, supplement reviews, birthday discounts, and more!

BIRTHDAY
1
2
3
4
5
6
7
8
9
10
11
12
13
14
15
16
17
18
19
20
21
22
23
24
25
26
27
28
29
30
31Jan
Feb
Mar
Apr
May
Jun
Jul
Aug
Sep
Oct
Nov
Dec

Health Tips

Dr. Edelberg’s Health Tips contain concise bits of advice, medical news, nutritional supplement and pharmaceutical updates, and stress relief ideas. With every Health Tip, you’ll also receive an easy, delicious, and healthful recipe.

When you sign up to receive Health Tips, you can look forward to Dr. Edelberg’s smart and very current observations arriving in your in-box weekly. They’re packed with helpful information and are often slightly irreverent. One of the most common responses to the tips is “I wish my doctor talked to me like this!”

Quick Connect

Get One Click Access to our

patient-portal

The Knowledge Base

Patient education is an integral part of our practice. Here you will find a comprehensive collection of staff articles, descriptions of therapies and nutritional supplements, information addressing your health concerns, and the latest research on nutritional supplements and alternative therapies.

Telemedicine – Now Available at WholeHealth Chicago

In order to maintain your continuity of care, WholeHealth Chicago now offers telemedicine appointments with most of our practitioners. During a telemedicine visit, you and your healthcare provider can review medical history, discuss symptoms, arrange for prescriptions, and more. When necessary, labs and diagnostic imaging can be ordered from a facility near your home, and our Natural Apothecary can ship supplements quickly to your door.

Please contact Patient Services for details and scheduling a telemedicine appointment, or to change a regular appointment to telemedicine by calling 773-296-6700.

We’re looking forward to meeting with you in our virtual consultation room soon.

Upcoming Workshops

**Adrenal Boost!
Tue, April 28, 6:00 PM – 8:00 PM
With Naturopath Caley Scott and Yoga Therapist Renee Zambo

Course Fee: $75.00
(Includes custom adrenal herbal tincture and a description of yoga practices you can do at home.)

Feeling Tired? Need help improving fatigue? Learn to boost your energy! Dr. Scott will teach you about herbs that support your adrenal glands to help boost your energy and adapt to stress. Renee will teach practices that restore and build energy, support daily activities, and ensure sound rest at night. More →

Recent Health Tips

  • Coronavirus Immune Superstar #1: Vitamin D

    Take 5000 IU daily. Here’s why: • The role of vitamin D in the human body is complex, with ramifications well beyond healthy bones. One of D’s effects is to trigger your immune system into a high-alert, anti-viral state. • Low Vitamin D increases your susceptibility to viral infections, likely including Covid-19. Former CDC director Tom Frieden has publicly stated that vitamin D may protect Read More

  • Important: High-Dose Vitamin C

    Look. I know you’re crazy busy at home, sheltering in place, sleeping a lot, eating too many carbs, binging marginal TV, and generally going bonkers. You don’t have a lot of spare time. But please click to this article in the New York Post. Too busy for that? OK. I’ll summarize. Intravenous vitamin C in high doses is being used both in China and in Read More

  • Taking Care of Yourself while Staying Home

    Seeing Your Chiropractic Physician via Telemedicine? Absolutely! I know what you’re thinking. ‘How can you possibly give me an adjustment during a video conference?’  The short answer is I can’t, but when coming to our office for an in-person appointment is difficult or impossible, I can continue to help. As a chiropractic physician, I’ve been working with patients via telemedicine for several years, and it’s Read More

Join our Discount Program

Member benefits include 10% off all your purchases. Low, one-time membership fee of $25 ($35 for family).

MORE INFORMATION

Join our Newsletter

Get health recommendations, recipes, medical news, supplement reviews, birthday discounts, and more!