Fight Back Against Occasional Bladder Control Issues

If there’s freshly sliced watermelon on the table and Bruce Springsteen on the radio, it must be July. And July is all about letting freedom ring, because nothing should stop you from enjoying this month—with independence! But what if you struggle with losing bladder control sometimes? Don’t even think about giving up on summer activities to stay close to a bathroom. Here are a few foodie tips to help you maintain bladder control. And remember, while we are providing these tips for informational purposes, it is always a good idea to discuss bladder control issues with your healthcare professional as there may be other underlying issues that only a medical professional can diagnose and treat.  


Chuck the Chocolate:

Take out the tissues—it’s true—chocolate can irritate the bladder. Why? Because whether it’s dark or milk, it contains a small amount of caffeine,1 which acts as a diuretic or bladder stimulant—meaning it can increase your urge to use the bathroom.2 In fact, a three and a half ounce serving of dark chocolate contains about 43 milligrams of caffeine.3 For those of us who struggle with bladder control, caffeine doesn’t help. While we keep hearing about the possible health benefits to the sweet treat, your bladder control issues may increase after eating it. If you can’t kick your chocolate habit altogether, try it in white. It’s a derivative that originates from the cacao plant, but contains no cocoa solids, so no caffeine.4 Sweet relief!

Stop the Soda:

Similar to chocolate, soda can be a caffeine-filled treat, which is a big no in the fight against frustrating bladder control issues. We understand the thirst-quenching cravings that lure you to soft drinks, but try eliminating soda from your diet completely; it is carbonated and can contain artificial sweeteners, both of which can irritate the lining of the bladder. Consider opting for decaffeinated iced teas, without artificial sweeteners, as a tasty and bladder-friendly alternative.

Walk Away from the Wings:

Another bladder irritant comes from something much hotter. There’s nothing like coming home to a dinner full of savory spices, whether in chicken wings, gumbo, curry—you name it! But these foods could irritate your bladder. While it’s not yet known why spicy foods could affect bladder control, it’s possible spices can irritate the lining of the bladder. Rule of thumb: if it burns your mouth and stomach, it might worsen bladder control issues. For flavorful food with a little kick, add garlic—it’s easy on the bladder!

Follow these foodie guidelines, and gear up for a more independent July.

1 Does Dark Chocolate Irritate the Prostate or Bladder?
2 Does Dark Chocolate Irritate the Prostate or Bladder?
3 Does Dark Chocolate Irritate the Prostate or Bladder?
4 The Definition of White Chocolate