The unexpected cause of UTIs… and how to STOP it!
Ladies, you know how it goes.
One day, everything is just fine. You feel great!
Then, it hits you -- that telltale hint of pain that lets you know another agonizing battle with a urinary tract infection is coming.
And this time, the source might surprise you.
It’s your chicken dinner!
Many UTIs are caused by the E. coli bacteria, a germ that’s commonly found in raw poultry, especially chicken.
But for years, scientists have insisted that the germs on your retail rooster were a different kind of E. coli, incapable of causing urinary tract infections.
Well... they were wrong!
New research finds that those chicken germs are a lot more dangerous than we’ve been led to believe.
An Arizona research team found THE SAME FORM of E. coli on 80 percent of supermarket chicken from major chains -- the same chicken often shipped regionally or nationwide.
In other words, you might find it in your own local supermarket.
The study also shows how quickly and easily this strain of bacteria makes the jump to humans, turning up in 72 percent of the UTI patients tested.
This doesn’t mean that the chicken was the cause of the infection in all of those cases -- or even most of them -- because you can get E. coli from a number of places.
But it’s certainly a suspect in at least some of those infections.
Fortunately, you can fight back. There’s a surefire way to prevent these infections, and all you have to do is cook your meat to 165 degrees Fahrenheit, which kills the germs.
If you’ve been doing it for years, you might cook without a thermometer. You go by cooking time… the color of the meat… if the juices are clear… or just plain instinct.
But if that’s how you do it, it might be time to buy a meat thermometer and double-check.
These germs are getting stronger, tougher to treat, and harder to beat.
And along with causing UTIs, E. coli can enter your bloodstream and cause infections elsewhere.
Many of the germs in meats like chicken, turkey, beef, and pork can also cause other infections -- especially food poisoning, another condition that’s getting harder to beat and turning deadly in some cases.
A decent food thermometer costs less than $10, and even a fancy one isn’t all that expensive these days. Consider it a small investment that could save you from major misery.
The surprising source of sickening germs in your own home
It just might be the dirtiest spot in your home, with more germs per square inch than anything else.
And it's NOT where you'd expect it.
It's not in your toilet. It's not under the sink. It's not in the basement, attic, or garage... and not even that weird spot in the back of the fridge.
No, this filthy piece of real estate is something you use and touch every day, and it comes in direct contact with the dishes you eat from.
It's your sponge!
Researchers squeezed out a bunch of kitchen sponges and found at least 362 different types of bacteria living inside.
Many are, of course, harmless. This is expected. We're surrounded by bacteria, and many won't hurt you.
The most common type of bacteria found on the sponges are the types that are probably crawling around on your skin right now.
But at least five types of bacteria found inside sponges aren't harmless at all.
They're what's known as "risk group 2" germs, which generally aren't deadly bugs but certainly can make you sick.
These are the germs responsible for common infections, including the kind that make you miserable enough to have to visit a doctor and get treatment.
In some cases, they even found bacteria such as the Staphylococcus responsible for "staph infections," as well as the Salmonella and Campylobacter behind many cases of food poisoning.
The research team found so many different types of germs that they called your kitchen sponges the "biggest reservoirs of active bacteria in the whole house."
That's no exaggeration: A 2013 study found the average dish sponge has a bacterial count of 775,460,560.
That's 3,000 times dirtier than number two on the list, the tap handle on your sink (which has a count of 228,854).
Your toilet seat, by contrast, has a count of just 1,200 -- in large part because people clean their toilets more often than their sinks and sponges.
But you can fix that easily enough.
One option is obvious. Don't try to squeeze extra life out of your sponges. Buy them in bulk, and make sure you replace them often.
The other is much less obvious: You can actually wash the germs right out of your sponge.
Search online and you'll find instructions for sanitizing sponges in both the microwave and dishwasher.
Obviously, they're not meant to last forever... so, even if you do clean them regularly, be sure to also replace the things often as well.
Incontinence is more than just a nuisance. It’s a serious health problem that could increase your risks of falls, according to new research.
Patch that leaky bladder is just MINUTES a day
If you're not in your Golden Years just yet, you might be a little surprised by what many seniors consider to be the worst part of aging. It's not slowing down. It's not the creaky knees. It's not the graying hair (or no hair at all).
It's not even the occasional senior moment, which can leave you wondering if it's the first sign of a slide down the slope of cognitive decline.
No, many of my older patients tell me the ABSOLUTE worst part of all is the indignity of an aging bladder -- one that sends you running to the bathroom every hour, or one that leaks with no warning. Continue reading