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Monolaurin and UTIs (Urinary Tract Infections)

Last Updated: January 8, 2019 | First Published: September 2, 2018
Reviewed by: Dr. Jennifer Meza, M.D.

Monolaurin has been shown in laboratory research to eliminate many of the bacteria and fungus which can cause UTIs and bladder infections.

Monolaurin has been shown in laboratory research to eliminate many of the bacteria and fungus which can cause UTIs and bladder infections.

What are Urinary Tract Infections (UTIs):

Urinary tract infections (UTIs) and bladder infections are caused by bacteria and can occur on both men and women, but is more common in women. Lower urinary tract infections are the most common, which effect the bladder and urethra. However, untreated UTIs can progress and move up the urinary system to impact the kidneys. UTIs should be diagnosed and treated to prevent spreading further complications or recurrences. 

Symptoms of a UTI or Bladder Infection:

UTIs and bladder infections can cause a burning sensation during urination, an intense or sudden urge to urinate, pain in the abdomen, or cloudy / dark urine. If you are experiencing any of these symptoms, it's best to see your doctor and seek treatment.

Traditional UTI Treatment Options:

Common treatments options for UTIs include antibiotics, which can help kill the bacteria contributing to the infection, but at the same time may destroy friendly gut flora. Regular use of antibiotics can also contribute to antibiotic resistance - an increasing concern amongst the medical community. Some homeopathic methods suggest taking cranberry juice or capsules may help treat or prevent a UTI, but the research is not conclusive. One research study which included 319 women with acute UTIs indicated that taking cranberry juice twice daily did not have a decrease in UTIs over six months (Ref #1).

Potential UTI Treatment with Monolaurin:

Monolaurin is a natural supplement derived from coconut oil and has been shown in laboratory studies to express antibacterial properties. Since urinary tract infections are caused by bacteria, eliminating the bacteria may help eliminate the infection

Common types of bacterial which may cause a UTI or bladder infection include:

  1. E. Coli

  2. Candida albicans

  3. Enterococcus faecalis

Monolaurin may have the ability to eliminate these types of bacteria based on published laboratory research:

1. E. Coli  (Escherichia coli)

E. Coli is a gram-negative bacteria commonly associated with foodborne illness and food poisoning. This bacteria can be found in the large intestine and enter the urinary tract causing a UTI. Research suggests that monolaurin is effective in killing gram-negative bacteria and E. Coli (Ref #3). Monlolauin may enter the cell membrane of E. Coli, thus disintegrating and killing the bacteria. (Ref # 4) Monolaurin my help with digestive problems caused by E. Coli, as well as urinary tract infections. Learn more about Monolaurin and E. Coli via the Insights article on Foodborne Bacteria.

2. Candida albicans

Candida albicans is a yeast which can cause yeast infections in women. It can also contribute to UTI and bladder infections. Multiple research studies have demonstrated Monolaurin's ability to kill Candida in the laboratory (Ref #5). Monolaurin demonstrated impressive efficacy of destroying Candida in the lab - killing off over 90% of Candida within 15 minutes and completely eliminating the candida in 120 minutes  (Ref #6). One study suggests that Monolaurin may be helpful in preventing infections caused by Candida (Ref #7). Learn more about Candida and Monolaurin via the Insights article titled Natural Support for Candida and Yeast Infections.

3. Enterococcus faecalis

Enterococcus faecalis is found in most healthy individuals, but can cause urinary tract infections (in addition to other infections like meningitis). Monolaurin has shown the ability in studies to inhibit the growth and production of E. faecalis biofilms (Ref #8) and even overcome vancomycin-resistant Enterococcus faecalis strains (Ref #9). Monolaurin has been shown to not cause drug resistance, and can be used to treat infections where traditional antibiotics may fail.

Conclusion

Urinary tract infections impact millions of people around the world, with many of these infections developing into chronic and recurring issues. The well documented antibacterial and antifungal properties of Monolaurin may be an alternative to overcoming these infections in a more natural and safe way. Monolaurin has been shown in the lab to kill three of the most common bacteria and yeasts which can contribute to UTIs, can overcome antibiotic-resistant strains of bacteria, and can do so without harming healthy gut bacteria or contributing to antibiotic resistance. 

 

References:

  1. Barbosa-Cesnik C, Brown MB, Buxton M, Zhang L, DeBusscher J, Foxman B. Cranberry juice fails to prevent recurrent urinary tract infection: results from a randomized placebo-controlled trial. Clin Infect Dis. 2011 Jan 1;52(1):23-30. doi: 10.1093/cid/ciq073

    1. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/21148516

  2. Ortega YR. Foodborne Diseases. Emerging Infectious Diseases. 2008;14(7):1181. doi:10.3201/eid1407.080346.

    1. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2600358/

  3. Beuchat LA. Comparison of antiviral activities of potassium sorbate, sodium benzoate and glycerol and sucrose esters of fatty acids. Appi. Environ. Microbiol. 39:1178, 1980

    1. http://pubmedcentralcanada.ca/pmcc/articles/PMC291503/

  4. Kabara JJ. The Pharmacological Effect of Lipids. Champaign, Ill, USA: American Oil Chemist’s Society; 1978. Page 92 https://goo.gl/1CcpaV

  5. Bergsson G, Arnfinnsson J, Steingrímsson O, and Thormar H. In Vitro Killing of Candida albicans by Fatty Acids and Monoglycerides. Antimicrobial Agents and Chemotherapy. 2001 November; 45(11): 3209–3212

    1. http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/11600381

  6. Zhang H, Xu Y, Wu L, Zheng X, Zhu S, Feng F, Shen L. Anti-yeast activity of a food-grade dilution-stable microemulsion. Applied Microbiology andBiotechnology. 2010 July;87(3):1101-8

    1. http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/20437043

  7. Preuss HG, Echard B, Zonosi RR. The potential for developing natural antibiotics: Examining oregano and monolaurin. Original Internist 2005;12:119–124

    1. http://www.highbeam.com/doc/1G1-138663115.html

  8. Hess DJ, Henry-Stanley MJ, Wells CL. The Natural Surfactant Glycerol Monolaurate Significantly Reduces Development of Staphylococcus aureus and Enterococcus faecalis Biofilms. Surg Infect (Larchmt). 2015 Oct;16(5):538-42. doi: 10.1089/sur.2014.162. Epub 2015 Jun 25.

    1. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/26110557

  9. Ruzin A, Novick RP. Glycerol monolaurate inhibits induction of vancomycin resistance in Enterococcus faecalis. Journal of Bacteriology. 1998 Jan; 180(1):182-5

    1. http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/9422612

Natural Support for Candida and Yeast Infections

Last Updated: December 2, 2018 | First Published: October 8, 2015
Reviewed by: Dr. Razak Nohri, Pharm.D, M.Phil, MBA

Yeast infections can impact 75% of US women. Can Monolaurin help?

Yeast infections can impact 75% of US women. Can Monolaurin help?

Fungus and Yeast - It's all around us

The human body and environment are surrounded by different microbial agents including fungi and yeast. This relationship is natural and safe, but complications may arise when the balance is disrupted. Candida is a genus of yeasts and is the most common cause of fungal infections worldwide [4]. In fact, 75% of U.S. women experience a Candida infection during their reproductive years. Between 40% to 50% of these women have recurrent episodes, and 5% to 8% experience chronic candida infections. [5]

Candida albicans and Yeast infections - trying a Natural Cure approach:

Candida albicans is the strain most commonly associated with urinary tract and yeast infections in women. Candida albicans and other Candida species can also affect the intestines following use of antibiotics or chemotherapy.

Many traditional treatments rush to apply topical creams to treat the infection, but this can lead to drug resistance and iterating side effects. An alternative and natural approach to treating fungal and yeast infections including Candida, uses Monolaurin - a medium chain fatty acid found naturally in coconut. Monolaurin is an effective, safe, and natural anti-microbial agent with lots of laboratory research behind it

  1. Monolaurin is effective at killing Candida albicans and other "bad" microbial infections [1, 3]

  2. Monolaurin is targeted, and does not kill "good" (beneficial) bacteria naturally found in your gut [2, 3]

  3. Monolaurin does not contribute to drug resistance [7]

  4. Monolaurin can be taken as a long-term therapy, protecting your body from a range of fungal, viral, and bacterial infections [6]

According to one research study, Monolaurin is just as effective as natamycin (a powerful antifungal drug) in killing Candida albicans. In laboratory tests against Candida albicans , Monolaurin killed over 90% yeast cells rapidly within 15 min and caused a complete loss of viability in 120 min [1].

Unlike wide-spectrum antibiotics which indiscriminately destroy good (beneficial) microbes along with the bad (harmful), Monolaurin has been shown to target and inhibit Candida albicans yeast while supporting and promoting healthy bacteria [2, 3]. In addition to better targeting of an invasive overgrowth, monolaurin does not contribute to microbial resistance as some antibiotics have shown [7].

A fungal overgrowth may be an indication that you are more susceptible to other viruses and infections which are dormant in your body. Monolaurin also possesses a wide range of anti fungal, anti viral, and anti bacterial properties which may help protect you from an increased risk of infection.

Natural Cure Labs Monolaurin treatment

If you are looking to treat a fungal or yeast infection without harsh or expensive drugs or lotions, monolaurin may be a great natural alternative.

A recommended Monolaurin dosage for treating existing or new infections is 1-2 capsules 2-3 times daily.  For those who have recently overcome an infection and want to maintain good health and avoid reinfection, 1-2 capsules 1-2 times daily can be effective.

# Capsules* x Per day Duration
New or Existing Yeast Infection 2-3 capsules 2-3 times per day 6 weeks or until gone
Maintain health & avoid reinfection 1-2 capsules 1-2 times per day Ongoing
*Capsules based on 600mg / capsule

For more detailed information on monolaurin dosing, please see the Monolaurin Dosing Guide

As any natural treatment, it is safest and most effective when done under the supervision of a health care professional .

References:

  1. Zhang H, Xu Y, Wu L, Zheng X, Zhu S, Feng F, Shen L. Anti-yeast activity of a food-grade dilution-stable microemulsion. Applied Microbiology andBiotechnology. 2010 July;87(3):1101-8

  2. Huang CB, Alimova Y, Myers TM, Ebersole JL. Short- and medium-chain fatty acids exhibit antimicrobial activity for oral microorganisms. Archives of Oral Biology. 2011 July; 56(7):650-4

  3. Bergsson G, Arnfinnsson J, Steingrímsson O, and Thormar H. In Vitro Killing of Candida albicans by Fatty Acids and Monoglycerides. Antimicrobial Agents and Chemotherapy. 2001 November; 45(11): 3209–3212

  4. Manolakaki, D., Velmahos, G., Kourkoumpetis, T., Chang, Y., Alam, H. B., De Moya, M. M., & Mylonakis, E. Candida infection and colonization among trauma patients. Virulence, 2010 1(5), 367-375.

  5. Wilson C. Recurrent vulvovaginitis candidiasis; an overview of traditional and alternative therapies. Advance for Nurse Practitioners. 2005 May; 13(5):24-9

  6. Lieberman S, Enig MG, Preuss HG. A Review of Monolaurin and Lauric Acid Natural Virucidal and Bactericidal Agents. Alternative & Complimentary Therapies, December 2006.

  7. Carpo BG, Verallo-Rowell VM, Kabara J. Novel antibacterial activity of monolaurin compared with conventional antibiotics against organisms from skin infections: an in vitro study. Journal of Drugs in Dermatology . 2007 Oct;6(10):991-8

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