This weekend is Cinco de Mayo, a holiday where we celebrate the Mexican Army’s victory over the French Empire on that date in 1862. Here in America it tends to be a day of indulging in all things Mexican– from delicious food to fancy drinks, a barbeque perhaps, or even some great music. Unfortunately, if you have Interstitial Cystitis, this holiday isn’t so much fun, as many of the foods and drinks you’ll come across are quite acidic. Beer, alcohol, tomatoes, oranges, and even that coffee you’ll want the next morning are likely to cause a flare-up in symptoms.
If you want to enjoy the festivities, our first piece of advice is to stay hydrated. Drink a glass of water for every bothersome food or drink you consume, or switch back and forth (i.e. a few sips of the beer and then a few sips of water). Keeping your urine diluted can make a huge difference. Also, you can use Prelief throughout the day to help remove the acid from food and drink before it hits your bladder. Prelief is found at most drug stores like Walgreens or Costco and is over-the-counter. Or, you can bring alternative food and drink to the party that don’t bother you, like a tomato-less salsa (try the Corn Chile Salsa from Trader Joe’s, add in some avocado and black beans!) or 100% blueberry juice to make your own mixer.
If you struggle with Interstitial Cystitis and aren’t having long term luck with sticking to a low-acid diet, the MonaLisa Touch treatment might be beneficial. Ladies who have come to us for help with various vaginal atrophy symptoms have found their IC symptoms improved (what a nice side-effect!). This might be something you want to look into; our patients are having great success!