Want Less UTIs? Exercise More!

African American woman run treadmill If you’ve ever had a urinary tract infection (UTI) — characterized by an intense need to urinate followed by a burning sensation — you know far too well how annoying they can be. In fact, we’ve pretty much heard it all when it comes to preventing or getting rid of one: make sure you pee after sex, drink cranberry juice. But one thing we didn’t consider adding to our arsenal was regular physical activity.

According to a new study published in the journal of Medicine and Science in Sports and Exercise, researchers suggest that exercise, even at low levels, may decrease your risk of bacterial infections—more specifically, UTIs.

The study, which followed nearly 19,000 people in Denmark for one year, asked participants to rank their level of daily activity from 1 (“regular hard physical training and competitive sports several times per week”) to 4 (“reading, watching television, or other sedentary activities”). Members were then divided into groups based on their level of physical-activity: high, low, moderate.

Meanwhile, a sedentary group was also formed – excluding anyone whose level of activity decreased due to a history of cancer, diabetes, heart disease, and lung disease, among other things.

Throughout the course of the study, researchers from Aalborg University in Denmark gathered data from…