How does d-mannose work?

Sep 23, 2018 | Daphne Kim

d-mannose in UTI prevention

How does d-mannose work?

While searching through treatment options for UTI prevention, you may have come across d-mannose and wondered, what is d-mannose and how does it work? D-mannose is a type of simple sugar that is produced naturally in your body as well as in starches of certain fruits (like blueberries, apples, cranberries, and other fruits). Here’s the science behind how d-mannose helps prevent UTIs and how you can safely add it to your UTI prevention plan.

What is d-mannose?

D-mannose is a simple sugar that is similar to glucose in structure, although it is not metabolized like other sugars. D-mannose isn’t converted into glycogen nor is it stored in the liver to be used as fuel. Instead, d-mannose is quickly filtered through the kidneys into the bladder, where it helps flush E.coli through your urinary tract.

D-mannose is also said to slow down protein loss and help control bleeding disorders and low blood sugar in some people. Studies on d-mannose have yet to show adverse effects on people, but if you are diabetic or are avoiding sugar, it is recommended to talk with your healthcare professional before taking d-mannose supplements.

How does d-mannose help you prevent UTIs?

According to research, support that d-mannose can be an effective treatment for UTI prevention, showing improvements to UTI symptoms and UTI prevention. Research on d-mannose found that this sugar coats the walls of your urinary tract system, which makes it harder for bacteria to latch on. D-mannose is receptive to E.coli, the bacteria that are responsible for causing 90% of all UTIs; E.coli bind to the d-mannose sugars instead of the urinary tract walls, further preventing infections from starting. However, the research shows that d-mannose may only affect E.coli in the bladder, meaning different kinds of bacteria might not respond to the mechanism. It is also a prebiotic, which promotes the growth of good bacteria in your gut.

D-mannose in cranberries

The sugar that makes up d-mannose and helps prevent UTIs is found in fruits like blueberries, peaches, and cranberries. Cranberries, which are one of the most popular recommendations for UTI prevention, contain antioxidants (PACs). Although results vary, some research has indicated that in high concentrations,  PACs can help prevent bacteria from starting infections in your urinary tract. Similarly, cranberries contain d-mannose. However, d-mannose is found in very trace amounts in cranberries, and drinking cranberry juice (or blueberry juice or peach juice) in an effort to get enough d-mannose to have an effect would be very difficult, and potentially impossible. 

Are there any side-effects of taking d-mannose?

There are not many known risks associated with taking d-mannose. However there are still a few things to be careful about. D-mannose is still a simple sugar and could potentially affect your blood sugar levels. Although studies indicated that d-mannose does not impact blood sugar, it's still recommended that you speak with your physicians if you have diabetes or other specific health issues. Some other possible side-effects of taking d-mannose include:

  • Mild bloating
  • Loose stool or diarrhea

Now that you know how it works, how much should you take?

D-mannose is naturally produced in the body, but it can also be taken as capsules or powders. D-mannose is also found naturally in fruits like cranberries and peaches, which you can safely add to your diet (although if you’re watching your sugar, ask your doctor first). Also, eating fruit as an attempt to incorporate more d-mannose isn't your diet isn't likely going to make a big difference on your UTI prevention regimen. 

Now you know how d-mannose works; so how much should you take for UTI prevention? The daily recommended dosage of d-mannose is around 2 grams taken with water, which was the amount used in this 2014 clinical trial. The amount of d-mannose a person needs in a day is undetermined because it depends on your body composition, age and a range of other medical factors. Talk to your doctor about the right amount of d-mannose for your body.

Looking for effective ways to prevent your next UTI? A serving of Uqora has exactly 2 grams of d-mannose as well as other ingredients that help your body fight infections. Uqora has several active ingredients that all serve a different purpose. D-Mannose binds with the bacteria to keep the bacteria from binding with your urinary tract, vitamin C boosts your immune system and also fights bacteria, Vitamin b6 is a gentle diuretic that increases increase urinary flow (and so pushes bacteria out), and finally Uqora includes a number of electrolytes to replace what we lose during urination and vitamins (magnesium and calcium) to boost our immune system. Give Uqora a try to get ahead of UTIs.

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