Uva Ursi for UTIs + Benefits, Dosage & Side Effects

The Health Benefits of Uva Ursi

Uva Ursi for UTIs + Benefits, Dosage & Side Effects

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Uva ursi (of the genus Arctostaphylos) is a plant species also commonly referred to as bearberry, kinnikinnick, beargrape, rockberry, sandberry, and more.

Though uva ursi is oftentimes used interchangeably with the name bearberry, it is actually one of several variations of bearberry.

 The Latin name uva ursi was derived because the plant’s red berries are eaten by bears—the name literally translates to “bear’s grape.” 

The numerous names for uva ursi can be confusing. Many experts refer to the Arctostaphylos genus as uva ursi, but others also refer to its strains—including Arctostaphylos adentricha and Arctostaphylos coactylis—as uva ursi. 

The uva ursi is a low-growing evergreen shrub. It’s said to make an excellent plant for ground cover, and it grows well in rocky soils in full or partial sun. The plant grows in a wide range of terrains, including open woodlands, sandy beaches, and even in rocky soils.

Uva ursi has reddish-brown branches with pink and white flowers that get replaced with clusters of red berries in the summer.

The growing range of the plant reaches from Alaska to California and all the way to New Mexico. The plant prefers cooler Northern climates but reaches as far south as Virginia, and its Midwest geographic range includes Illinois and Nebraska. The plant thrives in several regions of the world including North America, Europe, the Iberian Peninsula, Siberia, and the Himalayas.

The plant has been used as an herbal supplement since as far back as the second century. It’s most well known for its benefits in treating urinary tract infections before the discovery of antibiotics—Native Americans found the plant to be a useful, natural remedy.

Today, clinical research studies provide some evidence that uva ursi may help to treat UTIs, including bladder infections; however, many experts feel that more evidence is needed to solidify the claim.  

The primary health benefit of uva ursi as a medicinal herb is its use in treating urinary tract infections (UTIs) and bladder infections (cystitis).

There have been several studies that show uva ursi may be beneficial in treating UTIs and one study showed that when combined with dandelion root, uva ursi may even prevent recurrent UTIs.

 However, the study involved a very low number of participants. 

Uva Ursi works to reduce bacteria in the urine because it has chemicals called glycosides. In the body, glycosides are transformed into hydroquinone, which possesses antibacterial properties. In addition, uva ursi is thought to lower inflammation with its astringent effect on mucous membranes, but the clinical research evidence does not fully support this claim.  

Uva ursi’s infection-fighting properties come from several of the plant’s natural chemicals, including arbutin and hydroquinone.

 It also has tannins, a property that enables uva ursi to have an astringent effect. This effect is what is thought to lend itself to helping fight infection by reducing inflammation.

 More scientific research is needed to verify uva ursi’s anti-inflammatory properties.

As a topical (applied to the skin) agent, uva ursi was found to be effective as a skin lightening agent in a pilot study of healthy adults. Hyperpigmentation was inhibited in four six study participants who were exposed to ultraviolet light after using a topical application of a derivative of uva ursi (called arbutin).

There are several common medical uses of uva ursi, which do not have enough evidence to back up efficacy claims (many of which are made by herbal product companies). 

Although it’s possible that uva ursi could help with various ailments, more evidence is needed to determine its safety and effectiveness. Various symptoms and conditions that are thought to be potentially helped by uva ursi include:

  • promoting healing
  • soothing stomach upset
  • boosting the immune system
  • reducing inflammation
  • detoxifying the body
  • swelling of the bladder and urethra
  • swelling of the urinary tract
  • constipation
  • kidney infections
  • bronchitis
  • other conditions

One research review examined 14 over-the-counter products to evaluate each one’s ability to inhibit an enzyme that is involved with Staphylococcus saprophyticus (a common urinary tract pathogen). This enzyme is called urease.

Only one of the 14 preparations in the study was able to significantly lower urease (by more than 75 percent). That preparation was uva ursi combined with green tea. 

Another study found that “the antibacterial and astringent benefits [in uva ursi] plus research indicating that uva ursi can effectively treat and prevent urinary tract infections, suggest this herb can be helpful in treating urinary incontinence.»

Uva ursi is also known for its diuretic properties—this refers to the body’s ability to flush out fluids, which helps rid the bladder of pathogens (disease-causing germs). E. coli is a common pathogen, particularly in UTIs experienced by females. Research has suggested, therefore, that uva ursi can help prevent E. coli as well.

It’s important to note that although research on uva ursi's prevention of UTIs is favorable, for long-term use, uva ursi is not currently recommended as an effective prevention supplement. 

Although uva ursi is considered relatively safe for adults when taken by mouth for a short duration, long-term use and taking high doses may be very dangerous. The side effects of short-term use may include:

  • Nausea
  • Vomiting
  • Upset stomach
  • Discoloration of the urine (greenish-brown)
  • Insomnia
  • Irritability

Long-term use and/or taking high doses of uva ursi may result in:

  • Liver damage
  • Kidney damage
  • Breathing difficulties
  • Eye problems
  • Seizures
  • Death

Signs of toxicity to look for include:

  • Ringing in the ears (tinnitus)
  • Nausea and vomiting
  • Sense of suffocation
  • Shortness of breath
  • Convulsions
  • Delirium
  • Collapse

Contraindications are situations that shouldn't be combined with certain drugs, herbal supplements, vitamins, or medical treatments. Uva Ursi is contraindicated for those who have specific medical conditions or when taking particular types of medication. These include:

  • people taking lithium
  • people with kidney disorders (uva ursi can worsen kidney problems)
  • people who are pregnant or breastfeeding (uva ursi could induce labor and it's not safe in children—safety for nursing babies hasn't been established)
  • those with high blood pressure (uva ursi changes fluid levels in the body which must be highly monitored in those with high blood pressure)
  • those with Crohn’s disease, ulcers, or digestive problems
  • people with liver disease (uva ursi could worsen symptoms of liver disease)
  • people with retinal thinning
  • anyone taking nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) and corticosteroids
  • anyone taking iron supplements (a person who takes iron supplements should take them at least 2 hours before or 2 hours after taking uva ursi)

There are several safety measures that should be followed when taking uva ursi. Always consult with a physician or other healthcare provider before taking uva ursi because of its potentially toxic side effects, such as liver damage.

Ask your healthcare provider about how to ensure (with diet or supplements) that your urine is alkaline because uva ursi is not as effective with an acidic urine (acidic PH in the urine destroys its antibacterial effect).

Substances that make the urine more acidic, such as vitamin C, cranberry juice, orange juice, and other citrus fruits and juices should be avoided. Consult with a doctor to see if it's safe for you to take uva ursi at the first sign of a UTI—that is when the herbal supplement is most effective.

Uva ursi is available commercially as crushed leaf and powder preparations, including tea, tinctures, and capsules to be taken by mouth. Derivatives of the plant are also used for topical skin preparations. Only the leaves are used—not the berries—in herbal medicinal preparations. 

Due to the potential for toxicity, a physician should be consulted before taking uva ursi. Experts recommend avoiding taking the herb for longer than two weeks (conservative sources recommend limiting the duration of uva ursi to no more than five days) and no more than five times a year.

Never take more than the recommended dose or take uva ursi for longer than the prescribed duration.

As a dried herb, 2 to 4 grams per day with a total of 400 to 800 milligrams of arbutin is a standard dose. To make a tea, soak 3 grams of dried leaves in 5 ounces of water for 12 hours—then strain the tea and drink it three to four times each day. 

Note, it is important to avoid taking too much uva ursi. According to one source, even 15 grams (1/2 ounce) of dried uva ursi leaves can be toxic in some people.

Uva ursi leaves should be obtained only from indigenous plants (plants native to a particular area), according to the International Journal of Drug Development and Research.

Look for products that contain 400 to 800 mg of arbutin. When buying uva ursi, or any natural herbal supplement, always be sure the product is 100 percent natural from eco-friendly sources of plant extracts. 

The research indicates that crude plant extracts are more effective than isolated components. Although uva ursi is available in natural, chemically altered, or synthetic forms, the natural plant extracts are recommended.

Plant extracts are made by using specific solvents on dried or fresh leaves of the uva ursi plant. To be certain that products are pure and natural, look for these indicators:

  • free of preservatives
  • processed with natural solvents
  • contain plant-origin carriers
  • free of petroleum derivatives (commonly used for processing)
  • comprised of plants derived from from local farming
  • farming practices follow the Guideline on Good Agricultural and Collection Practices (GACP)
  • non-GMO, organic products
  • Tru-ID Certified (an independent testing program that ensures the authenticity of herbal products)

No, it is not safe to give uva ursi to children.

Is it safe for pregnant or breastfeeding moms? 

No, the safety for nursing babies and pregnant mothers has not yet been established.

How can stomach upset be minimized when taking uva ursi?

Try taking uva ursi with meals to minimize undesirable side effects.

How can the urine be alkalized to ensure the optimal effects of uva ursi?

Some herbal experts recommend taking uva ursi with calcium citrate to alkalinize the urine but always consult with your healthcare provider before taking uva ursi or calcium citrate.

What other herbs are commonly taken with uva ursi?

There are several herbal combinations for bladder infections. Some preliminary studies have shown that uva ursi combined with dandelion tea could be effective in the prevention of UTIs. However, there is limited clinical research to support claims of other herbal supplements taken with uva ursi.

As with all vitamins and supplements, uva ursi can potentially cause side effects. For this reason, always consult with your doctor or healthcare provider before taking any supplements.

Since there is potential for dangerous side effects from uva ursi, many experts recommend taking commercially made antibiotics for urinary tract or bladder infections—antibiotics are safer and have fewer side effects. 

Source: https://www.verywellhealth.com/uva-ursi-health-benefits-4582831

Uva Ursi for UTIs + Benefits, Dosage & Side Effects

Uva Ursi for UTIs + Benefits, Dosage & Side Effects

Bears snack on its fruits, Native Americans smoke it, and women take it for UTIs. Clinical evidence only partly supports traditional uses of uva ursi and brings up some safety concerns. Read on for a breakdown of uva ursi uses, benefits and side effects.

What Is Uva Ursi?

Arctostaphylos uva-ursi is a woody shrub from the Heath family of plants (Ericaceae). Common names for this plant are bearberry, crowberry, kinnikinnick, and pinemat manzanita [1].

Both “Arctostaphylos” (Greek) and “uva ursi” (Latin) mean bear’s grape; supposedly, bears love snacking on uva ursi fruits. Native to North American mountains, uva ursi prefers higher northern areas of Europe, America, and Asia [2].

Uva ursi is just one type of bearberry, the other ones being:

  • Arctostaphylos adenotricha (found in the Sierra Nevada)
  • Arctostaphylos coactilis (located on the costs of California)
  • Arctostaphylos cratericola (found in the high mountains of Guatemala)

Uva ursi grows as a short, dense bush, with evergreen leaves lasting for a couple of years. Leaves are thick, shiny, and oval with rounded tips. In late spring, uva ursi blooms tiny white-to-pink flowers. Fruits are bright red glossy berries that last until early winter.

Proponents:

  • May prevent UTIs
  • Lightens the skin
  • May relieve allergies
  • Fights bacteria and viruses
  • May help reduce blood pressure

Skeptics:

  • May not treat UTIs
  • Not well studied in humans
  • Not suitable for long-term consumption
  • Some metabolites may be toxic

Traditional and Modern Uses

According to some records, famous Welsh Physicians of Myddfai used uva ursi back in the 13th century. French botanist Carolus Clusius first described it in 1601, and its medicinal use spread to the rest of Europe by the 18th century.

Folks around the globe have been using uva ursi to treat UTIs, inflammation, and stones in the bladder and kidneys, diabetes, and venereal diseases.

Traditional medicine uses creams and lotions with uva ursi (bearberry) for skin lightening. Nowadays, UTIs and skin issues remain the top uses of this herb [3, 4, 5].

Native American people add dried uva ursi leaves to tobacco and other herbs to make a smoking mix or “kinnikinnick.” Swedish and Russian folks use it for skin processing.

Uva ursi found its way to many gardens and urban areas. Its dense bushes and evergreen leaves are attractive and easy to cultivate.

Components

In herbal medicine, only the dried uva ursi leaves have value. Commercial mixtures and loose teas often contain the entire plant, but that indicates poor product quality.

The main active ingredient is arbutin (5 – 12%), a complex sugar-bound molecule. Enzymes in the gut transform arbutin into hydroquinone, responsible for its main medicinal actions. Standardized uva ursi leaf extracts should contain 420 mg or 20% of arbutin [6, 7, 8+].

Uva ursi leaves are also rich in tannins such as corilagin (10 – 20%), which clean and shrink body tissues (tannins in wine and berries shrink your mouth). Other components include [9, 10, 11, 3]:

  • Phenolic acids: gallic, p-coumaric and syringic acid
  • Flavonoids: catechin, quercetin
  • Enzymes: beta-glucosidase (arbutase)
  • Triterpenes: ursolic acid, α-amyrin,
  • Minerals: iron, selenium, manganese
  • Other: allantoin, resin, wax, fatty acids

Autumn is the best season to harvest the leaves and get the peak arbutin content. Experts recommend using wild (indigenous) plants for the best product quality [12].

Mechanism of Action

According to limited research, arbutin and its metabolite, hydroquinone, may [13, 14, 15, 16]:

  • Prevent the growth of bacteria
  • Reverse oxidative damage
  • Soothe inflammation
  • Protect the nerves

They also inhibit tyrosinase, a crucial enzyme that makes the skin pigment melanin [17, 18].

Although the majority of research about uva ursi focuses on those two compounds, corilagin has also shown the above effects. Astringent (shrinking) and antibacterial properties of corilagin may contribute to the impact of uva ursi on UTIs and other infections [19, 20, 21].

Insufficient Evidence:

No valid clinical evidence supports the use of uva ursi for any of the conditions in this section. Below is a summary of low-quality clinical trials and cell-based research, which should spark further investigation. However, you shouldn’t interpret them as supportive of any health benefit.

1) Urinary Tract Infections (UTIs)

Each year, approximately 150 million people suffer from urinary tract infections (UTIs). The resistance of bacteria that cause UTIs, such as E. coli and E. faecalis, to common antibiotics poses huge challenges and makes research about complementary approaches uva ursi important [22].

Clinical Data

In a clinical trial of 57 women with frequent UTIs, uva ursi prevented bladder inflammation. After a one-month treatment (540 mg/day of the dry extract), the women were free of symptoms for one year and reported no side effects [23].

  1. Coli and other UTI-causing bacteria couldn’t survive in the urine samples of patients who took uva ursi extract or arbutin (100 – 1,000 mg) [24+, 25].

Hydroquinone, the primary metabolite of arbutin, is more efficient against bacteria in alkaline urine (pH ~ 8). Baking soda (6 – 8 g) may alkalize urine and boost the antibacterial action of uva ursi [21, 4, 25].

That said, uva ursi failed to cure UTIs in a much larger clinical study (382 women). By the 4th day of infection, patients reported no difference in symptoms and antibiotic use [8].

A review of clinical data and traditional uses also questioned the ability of uva ursi (bearberry) to treat UTIs. The authors suggested it for short-term prevention and emphasized the need for large well-designed trials. A team of German doctors has already announced one [4, 26].

Cell Studies

Cell experiments have also suggested the antibacterial action of uva ursi extract against the most common causes of UTI, such as E. Coli, S. saprophyticus, and E. faecalis [26, 27, 3].

Corilagin and other tannins from uva ursi leaves may decrease inflammation, tighten the urinary tract walls, and help combat UTI-causing bacteria [19, 28].

Animal and Cellular Research (Lacking Evidence)

No clinical evidence supports the use of uva ursi for any of the conditions listed in this section. Below is a summary of the existing animal and cell-based research, which should guide further investigational efforts. However, the studies listed below should not be interpreted as supportive of any health benefit.

Kidney Stones

In a study on rats, researchers observed the ability of uva ursi extract to dissolve kidney stones and clean the urinary tract. Once again, the authors pointed to the role of alkaline pH in these effects [29].

Flushing Fluids

Enhanced urination (diuretic effect) is one of the body’s mechanisms to get rid of bacteria in the urinary system. Herbs and substances with this action may also help with UTIs and prevent kidney stone build-up [30].

Uva ursi was able to increase urine flow in rats while maintaining the electrolyte balance [31].

3) Inflammation and Allergies

In studies on mice with allergies, uva ursi extract and arbutin were able to [14, 32, 33]:

  • Sooth the animals’ skin
  • Decrease inflammation and swelling
  • Relieve allergic reactions
  • Support standard treatment with NSAIDs and corticosteroids

A cream with uva ursi extract (1 – 2%) showed similar results when applied to animals’ skin. It couldn’t decrease swelling on its own, but it boosted the effects of a corticosteroid cream [34].

Bacterial

Antibacterial effects of uva ursi (bearberry) aren’t limited to urinary tract infections. In a cell study, uva ursi extract reduced the growth of MRSA – a dangerous type of bacteria (S. aureus) resistant to common antibiotics. When combined with antibiotics, uva ursi boosted their potency 100 – 2,000 times [35].

Corilagin found in uva ursi leaves may inhibit the growth of Helicobacter Pylori, which causes stomach ulcers [36].

Viral

According to cellular studies, corilagin may prevent the spreading of the HIV-1 virus by blocking its 2 essential enzymes – protease and reverse transcriptase. Corilagin was effective even against the drug-resistant HIV strains, making it a promising herbal add-on. However, clinical studies are needed to investigate its anti-HIV effects in the human body [37, 38].

5) High Blood Pressure

One of the major components of uva ursi leaves, corilagin, was able to reduce high blood pressure in rats. It blocked the release of noradrenaline and relaxed blood vessels [39, 40, 41].

Many drugs for high blood pressure work by stimulating urination (diuretics). Uva ursi extract showed this effect in rats, but its effects on blood pressure haven’t been researched yet [31].

6) Liver Protection

In animal studies, researchers noticed the potential of corilagin, which is abundant in uva ursi leaves, to protect the liver against [42, 43, 44, 28, 45, 46]:

  • Parasitic infections
  • Potentially toxic drugs (Tylenol)
  • Bleeding caused by injuries
  • Impaired bile acid flow

However, whole uva ursi herb or extract may not have the same effects as isolated components. No studies have observed the liver-protective effects of uva ursi.

Limitations and Caveats

  • Clinical data on the benefits of uva ursi for UTIs is minimal and conflicting.
  • It has shown other medical properties in animal and cell studies only.
  • Many studies used isolated components, not the extract.

Only one clinical trial showed the benefits of uva ursi for UTI prevention.

We may question its results due to a small sample size and the possible contribution of dandelion extract [23].

Skin Benefits of Uva Ursi

Cosmetic products with uva ursi extract and its chief components, arbutin and hydroquinone, have a long history of use for skin lightening and spot removal [3, 5].

Melasma

A review of 30 clinical trials proclaimed arbutin an efficient depigmenting (lightening) agent [47].

The same goes for ts metabolite, hydroquinone, but, due to safety concerns, some health experts suggest limiting its use to hair dyes and nail care products [48, 49, 50, 51].

In test tubes, uva ursi leaves, arbutin, and hydroquinone inhibited the production of melanin [52, 17, 18].

Uva ursi extract may not have the same effects in cosmetic products as arbutin or hydroquinone. Clinical trials should examine its skin-lightening potential.

Uva Ursi Side Effects & Precautions

This list does not cover all possible side effects. Contact your doctor or pharmacist if you notice any other side effects. In the US, you may report side effects to the FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088 or at www.fda.gov/medwatch

Source: https://selfhacked.com/blog/uva-ursi-for-utis-13-health-benefits-dosage-side-effects/

Uva Ursi: Health Benefits, Uses, Side Effects, Dosage & Interactions

Uva Ursi for UTIs + Benefits, Dosage & Side Effects

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UVA URSI

Uva Ursi for UTIs + Benefits, Dosage & Side Effects
Uva ursi is a plant. The leaves are used to make medicine. Bears are particularly fond of the fruit, which explains its Latin name, «uva ursi,» which means «bear's grape.» Most authorities refer to Arctostaphylos uva-ursi as uva ursi.

However, the related plants, Arctostaphylos adentricha and Arctostaphylos coactylis, have also been termed uva ursi by some experts.

Uva ursi is used primarily for urinary tract disorders, including infections of the kidney, bladder, and urethra; swelling (inflammation) of the urinary tract; increased urination; painful urination; and urine that contains excess uric acid or other acids. Uva ursi is also used for constipation and a lung condition called bronchitis.

Uva ursi, hops, and peppermint are also used in combination to treat people with compulsive bedwetting and painful urination.

Uva ursi can reduce bacteria in the urine. It can also reduce swelling (inflammation), and have a drying (astringent) effect on the tissues.

  • Urinary tract infections (UTIs). Developing research suggests that taking a combination product containing both uva ursi and dandelion by mouth seems to reduce the recurrence rate of UTIs in women. However, since it is not clear if this kind of extended use is safe, do not use uva ursi for long-term prevention of UTIs.
  • Swelling of the bladder and urethra.
  • Swelling of the urinary tract.
  • Constipation.
  • Kidney infections.
  • Bronchitis.
  • Other conditions.

More evidence is needed to rate the effectiveness of uva ursi for these uses. Uva ursi is POSSIBLY SAFE for most adults when taken by mouth short-term (for up to one month). It can cause nausea, vomiting, stomach discomfort, and a greenish-brown discoloration of the urine.

However, uva ursi is POSSIBLY UNSAFE when taken by mouth in high doses or long-term. It can cause liver damage, eye problems, breathing problems, convulsions, and death.

Pregnancy and breast-feeding: Using uva ursi during pregnancy is LY UNSAFE because it might start labor. Not enough is known about the safety of using uva ursi during breast-feeding. Avoid use if you are pregnant or nursing.

Children: Uva ursi is POSSIBLY UNSAFE in children when taken by mouth. Uva ursi contains a chemical that might cause severe liver problems. Do not give uva ursi to children.

Retinal thinning: Uva ursi contains a chemical that can thin the retina in the eye. This could worsen the condition of people whose retinas are already too thin. Avoid use if you have this problem.

  • Lithium interacts with UVA URSIUva ursi might have an effect a water pill or «diuretic.» Taking uva ursi might decrease how well the body gets rid of lithium. This could increase how much lithium is in the body and result in serious side effects. Talk with your healthcare provider before using this product if you are taking lithium. Your lithium dose might need to be changed.

The appropriate dose of uva ursi depends on several factors such as the user's age, health, and several other conditions. At this time there is not enough scientific information to determine an appropriate range of doses for uva ursi.

Keep in mind that natural products are not always necessarily safe and dosages can be important. Be sure to follow relevant directions on product labels and consult your pharmacist or physician or other healthcare professional before using.

View References

  • Arndt KA, Fitzpatrick TB. Topical use of hydroquinone as a depigmenting agent. JAMA 1965;194(9):965-967. View abstract.
  • Assaf, M. H., Ali, A. A., Makboul, M. A., Beck, J. P., and Anton, R. Preliminary study of phenolic glycosides from Origanum majorana; quantitative estimation of arbutin; cytotoxic activity of hydroquinone. Planta Med 1987;53(4):343-345. View abstract.
  • Beaux, D., Fleurentin, J., and Mortier, F. Effect of extracts of Orthosiphon stamineus Benth, Hieracium pilosella L., Sambucus nigra L. and Arctostaphylos uva-ursi (L.) Spreng. in rats. Phytother.Res 1999;13(3):222-225. View abstract.
  • Chakraborty AK, Funasaka Y, Komoto M, et al. Effect of arbutin on melanogenic proteins in human melanocytes. Pigment Cell Res 1998;11(4):206-212. View abstract.
  • Grases, F., Melero, G., Costa-Bauza, A., Prieto, R., and March, J. G. Urolithiasis and phytotherapy. Int Urol Nephrol 1994;26(5):507-511. View abstract.
  • Jin YH, Lee SJ, Chung MH, et al. Aloesin and arbutin inhibit tyrosinase activity in a synergistic manner via a different action mechanism. Arch Pharm Res 1999;22(3):232-236. View abstract.
  • Kruszewska H, Zareba T, Tyski S. Examination of antimicrobial activity of selected non-antibiotic drugs. Acta Pol Pharm 2004;61 Suppl:18-21. View abstract.
  • Kubo M, Ito M, Nakata H, et al. [Pharmacological studies on leaf of Arctostaphylos uva-ursi (L.) Spreng. I. Combined effect of 50% methanolic extract from Arctostaphylos uva-ursi (L.) Spreng. (bearberry leaf) and prednisolone on immuno-inflammation]. Yakugaku Zasshi 1990;110(1):59-67. View abstract.
  • Larsson B, Jonasson A, Fianu S. Prophylactic effect of UVA-E in women with recurrent cystitis: a preliminary report. Current Therapeutic Research 1993;53(4):441-443.
  • Maeda K, Fukuda M. Arbutin: mechanism of its depigmenting action in human melanocyte culture. J Pharmacol Exp Ther 1996;276(2):765-769. View abstract.
  • Matsuda H, Higashino M, Nakai Y, et al. Studies of cuticle drugs from natural sources. IV. Inhibitory effects of some Arctostaphylos plants on melanin biosynthesis. Biol Pharm Bull 1996;19(1):153-156. View abstract.
  • Nowak AK, Shilkin KB, Jeffrey GP. Darkroom hepatitis after exposure to hydroquinone. Lancet 1995;345(8958):1187. View abstract.
  • Paper DH, Koehler J, Franz G. Bioavailability of drug preparations containing a leaf extract of Arctostaphylos uva-ursi (L.) Spreng. (Uvae ursi folium). Pharmaceutical and Pharmacological Lett 1993;3:63-66.
  • Parejo I, Viladomat F, Bastida J, et al. A single extraction step in the quantitative analysis of arbutin in bearberry (Arctostaphylos uva-ursi) leaves by high-performance liquid chromatography. Phytochem Anal 2001;12(5):336-339. View abstract.
  • Pizzorno J, Murry M. Textbook of Natural Medicine. 1999;989-990, 1187.
  • Quintus J, Kovar KA, Link P, et al. Urinary excretion of arbutin metabolites after oral administration of bearberry leaf extracts. Planta Med 2005;71(2):147-152. View abstract.
  • Schindler G, Patzak U, Brinkhaus B, et al. Urinary excretion and metabolism of arbutin after oral administration of Arctostaphylos uvae ursi extract as film-coated tablets and aqueous solution in healthy humans. J Clin Pharmacol 2002;42(8):920-927. View abstract.
  • Shimizu M, Shiota S, Mizushima T, et al. Marked potentiation of activity of beta-lactams against methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus by corilagin. Antimicrob Agents Chemother 2001;45(11):3198-3201. View abstract.
  • Sugai T. [Clinical effects of arbutin in patients with chloasma]. Skin Research 1992;34:522-529.
  • Turi, M., Turi, E., Koljalg, S., and Mikelsaar, M. Influence of aqueous extracts of medicinal plants on surface hydrophobicity of Escherichia coli strains of different origin. APMIS 1997;105(12):956-962. View abstract.
  • Wahner C, Schonert J, Friedrich H. [Knowledge of the tannin contained in leaves of the bearberry (Arctostaphylos uva-ursi L)]. Pharmazie 1974;29(9):616-617. View abstract.
  • Chauhan B, Yu C, Krantis A, et al. In vitro activity of uva-ursi against cytochrome P450 isoenzymes and P-glycoprotein. Can J Physiol Pharmacol. 2007;85(11):1099-107. View abstract.
  • de Arriba SG, Naser B, Nolte KU. Risk assessment of free hydroquinone derived from Arctostaphylos Uva-ursi folium herbal preparations. Int J Toxicol. 2013;32(6):442-453.
  • Foster S, Tyler VE. Tyler's Honest Herbal, 4th ed., Binghamton, NY: Haworth Herbal Press, 1999.
  • Larsson B, Jonasson A, Fianu S. Prophylactic effect of UVA-E in women with recurrent cystitis: a preliminary report. Curr Ther Res 1993;53:441-3.
  • Park JB, Kim D, Min JS, et al. Identification and characterization of in vitro inhibitors against UDP-glucuronosyltransferase 1A1 in uva-ursi extracts and evaluation of in vivo uva-ursi-drug interactions. Food Chem Toxicol. 2018;120:651-661. View abstract.
  • Wang L, Del Priore LV. Bull's-eye maculopathy secondary to herbal toxicity from uva ursi. Am J Ophthalmol 2004;137:1135-7. View abstract.

Source: https://www.webmd.com/vitamins/ai/ingredientmono-350/uva-ursi

Uva Ursi — DrWeil.com

Uva Ursi for UTIs + Benefits, Dosage & Side Effects

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Botanical name: Arctostaphylos uva-ursi

Uva Ursi Information And Description

Uva ursi, also known as bearberry, kinnikinnick, and pinemat manzanita, is a small groundcover shrub distributed throughout northern latitudes and in high altitudes further south. The plant produces small; stiff evergreen leaves that last 1-3 years before falling.

In late spring, white to pink flowers bloom, eventually producing ¼- to ½-inch red berry fruit that survives until early winter. Bears eat the fruit berries, leading to the plant’s Latin name uva ursi, which means “grape’s of the bear.

” Native Americans have used uva ursi for hundreds of years, often combining the leaves with tobacco and other herbs for smoking.

Uses For Uva Ursi:

Uva ursi is most commonly used for treating acute urinary tract infections (UTIs). However, the supportive medical research is scant. In the past, it has been recommended as preventive against recurrent UTI, but there are significant safety concerns.

One double-blind trial found that women who took an uva ursi extract for one month experienced a significant decrease in recurrence of UTI symptoms at the one-year follow-up to the study.

Researchers believe that the kidneys filter arbutin, a compound found in the leaves of uva ursi, into the urine, where it acts as an antimicrobial.

However, extended use of uva ursi may be harmful and is not recommended for long-term prevention of UTIs.

Uva Ursi Is Available In:

Crushed leaves, powdered preparations, and capsules. Note: only leaves, not the berries, are used in herbal medicine.

Uva Ursi Interactions And Warnings:

Uva ursi may act as a diuretic in the body, affecting levels of certain drugs (such as lithium) in the blood stream. Talk with your doctor before taking uva ursi.

Uva ursi is ly safe for short-term use in adults, but it may cause nausea, vomiting, and urine discoloration in some people. High-dose and long-term use (more than two to four weeks) are strongly discouraged because they have been associated with liver damage and eye problems, and there are suggestions of carcinogenicity.

When Buying Uva Ursi:

Uva ursi contains a compound called arbutin; look for standardized products that contain 400-800 mg of arbutin.

Uva Ursi Dosage:

As dried herb, 2-4 g per day, standardized to a total of 400-800 mg of arbutin. As a tea, soak 3 g of dried leaves in 5 oz. of water for 12 hours. Strain the tea and drink hot or cold, 3-4 times per day.

Dr. Weil Says:

Uva ursi may kill some bacteria that cause UTIs and reduce inflammation. However, don’t use it for more than a week because it can irritate the liver. Also, you must keep your urine alkaline in order for the uva ursi to work – this means eating lots of fruits and vegetables.

SOURCES:

Consumerlab. https://www.consumerlab.com/tnp.asp?chunkiid=21533

Head, Kathleen A. “Natural approaches to prevention and treatment of infections of the lower urinary tract.” Alternative Medicine Review 13, no. 3 (2008).

Larsson, Bertil, Aino Jonasson, and Stefan Fianu. “Prophylactic effect of UVA-E in women with recurrent cystitis: a preliminary report.” Current therapeutic research 53, no. 4 (1993): 441-443.

Uva Ursi. Natural Medicines Comprehensive Database. Stockton, CA: Therapeutic Research Faculty. [Updated Dec. 21, 2011; Reviewed Dec. 21, 2011; Accessed Apr. 9, 2014]. http://naturaldatabaseconsumer.therapeuticresearch.com/nd/Search.aspx?rn=3&cs=NONMP&s=NDC&pt=100&id=350&fs=NDC&searchid=45727925

University of Maryland Medical Center. Uva Ursi. http://umm.edu/health/medical/altmed/herb/uva-ursi

Yarnell, Eric. “Botanical medicines for the urinary tract.” World journal of urology 20, no. 5 (2002): 285-293.

Reviewed by Russell Greenfield, M.D., August, 2016.

Source: https://www.drweil.com/vitamins-supplements-herbs/herbs/uva-ursi/

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