Diabetes and Urinary Problems Go Hand in Hand


Diabetes is one of the most common diseases in India, and has become a growing concern in the country along with obesity. One of the main reasons why diabetes is dangerous is because it causes a myriad of health concerns that can even prove to be fatal if not taken care of. As many diabetics know, disease management is a large part of their lifestyle. When this does not happen, patients can suffer from many of the complications of diabetes. Of the many complications that can occur, in this article, we will discuss diabetes and urinary problems, and how they go hand in hand.

Diabetes and Urinary Problems

Why are Diabetes and Urinary Problems Linked?

Poor glycemic control is the main reason why diabetes and urinary problems are linked. High blood sugar leads to nerve and blood vessel damage in the urinary system, which can lead to multiple health concerns. The risk of developing urinary problems due to diabetes also increases when patients have high cholesterol, are overweight, smoke cigarettes, and have a largely sedentary lifestyle. Furthermore, diabetics often suffer from frequent urination.

What are the Different Urinary Problems that Occur Due to Diabetes?

Some of the different urinary problems that occur due to diabetes include the following:

  • An overactive bladder: Frequent urination is a common effect of suffering from diabetes. This is because the disease causes muscle spasms in the bladder (or contractions) that lead to the urge to pass urine more frequently. Frequent urination can also be caused due to high blood sugar. If you are wondering “how many times does a diabetic urinate?”, then an upward of 8 times a day and 2 times a night can be expected. With Diabetes, frequent urination treatment relies on various bladder training methods like Kegel exercises, electrical stimulation, and timed voiding. Patients may also be given medication.
  • Urine retention: This refers to the inability to empty the bladder completely. Due to this, patients can suffer from urine incontinence, bladder infections, kidney infections and kidney damage. Urine retention treatments include medication, catheter usage, lower abdomen massage, urethral stents and Kegel exercises.
  • Lack of muscle sphincter control: Sphincter muscles are essential for opening and closing bodily passages. High blood sugar and poor sugar control can both contribute to nerve damage, which can lead to the sphincter muscles not working the way they should. As a result, patients develop difficulty urinating if these muscles are unable to loosen. Conversely, if these muscles are unable to tighten, patients develop urinary incontinence.
  • Recurrent UTIs: High blood sugar facilitates the growth of bacteria, mainly because it acts as a fertile breeding ground for them. Due to this, patients can suffer from painful urination, pain above the pubic bone (for women), fullness in the rectum (for men), and reddish or cloudy looking urine. Severe UTIs in the kidney can lead to fever, nausea and lower back and side pain.
  • Kidney damage: High blood sugar can damage the blood vessels in the kidneys, which leads to the organs not being able to function correctly. Instead of only allowing toxins to filter through and exit the body, damaged kidneys also facilitate the passage of proteins from the blood, leading to protein loss. Kidney damage does not have a set of symptoms that patients can be vigilant about. However, one of its key indicators is frothy urine. Diabetics must get urine albumen tests conducted frequently to know that their kidneys are functioning well. Treatment can include medications, dialysis and transplant surgery if the kidney damage has progressed to the point where the patient needs new organs.

Preventing Urinary Problems:

For diabetics, there is only one way to prevent urinary problems and that is by controlling their blood sugar. The following are a few ways that diabetes can learn to manage their disease and control blood sugar levels successfully:

Exercising Regularly:

Regular exercise is essential as it helps diabetics lose weight and also increase their insulin activity. When there is increased insulin activity, the cells in the body can use the sugar in the blood more effectively, thereby reducing the blood sugar. Furthermore, the muscles in the body also end up using the blood sugar in order to contract when you exercise. A few forms of exercise that can help diabetics achieve this include walking briskly, dancing, weight lifting, hiking, swimming, and so on.

Reduce Carbs from Your Diet:

Carbohydrates break down into sugar in the body, which is why they can be detrimental to those who are trying to cut down their blood sugar levels. Carbs also impact insulin function, which is another reason why the blood sugar levels end up rising. You can either replace your carbs with another nutrient while structuring your diet, or count your carb intake on a daily basis to control the same.

Control Your Stress Levels:

Stress can play havoc with the body and the mind. It is even proven to have significant impact on your blood sugar levels. This is mainly because when you are under stress, the body responds by releasing two hormones – cortisol and glucagon. Both of these hormones contribute to the increase in blood sugar levels in the body. In order to combat this, patients must either reduce stress causing activities from their lives, or learn to manage their stress in a more effective manner. Pursuing certain activities like yoga and meditation can help.

Include More Apple Cider Vinegar in Your Diet:

Apple cider vinegar has multiple health benefits. One of them is that they help reduce your fasting glucose levels. This is mainly because it helps decrease the overall production of the same in the liver, while also increasing the cellular usage of glucose. Furthermore, it can improve your insulin sensitivity. Patients can add 2 teaspoons of apple cider vinegar to 8 ounces of water and drink it throughout the day. Incorporating this in your diet is quite easy as you can also use it as a delicious salad dressing.


As diabetes and urinary problems go hand in hand, it is absolutely essential for patients to prevent their occurrence by monitoring their diet and exercise. Remember to check your glucose levels on a regular basis with the help of an at-home glucometer, just to know whether you are taking the right steps towards great health!

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