Pros: Natural with no side effects
Cons: Can be expensive so shop around. Look for pure d-mannose
Unlike many people who have reviewed this product on other sites, I never had problems with UTIs until I became a diabetic in my late 50s.
The first time I dealt with a UTI, I didn't know what was wrong with me and I ended up in an emergency room in severe pain from a distended bladder. I had to be catheterized and was given antibiotics. The pain was so great I had to take a very strong prescription pain medicine. I have desperately tried to avoid UTIs ever since.
For me, the first sign of a UTI is a foul odor and cramping in the bladder which can easily be confused with uterine cramping.
Then I noticed that although I felt like urinating frequently I had little urine output. UTI's, left untreated, can lead to severe kidney problems and death in extreme cases.
I always seek out natural solutions to my medical issues but because I didn't know about d-mannose, I took antibiotics from my medical doctor about every 6 months, then every 3 months and in the end I was given a dose for 1 month to totally rid my body of the infection. By the 2nd week on that antibiotic my body had developed immunity to the antibiotic and the UTI was growing back.
Just when I needed it most, a little piece of junk mail put out by Healthier News LCC from Baltimore MD changed my life by introducing me to d-mannose. I had tossed the book but thought I'd just glance through it briefly before tossing it permanently. The book is called Miracle Medicine by Matthew Simons. 7 small paragraphs on pages 32 and 33 got me started on d-mannose. I'm so grateful for that "junk" mail.
D-Mannose is a very effective treatment for most UTIs that are caused by e.coli. This ClearTract is the 4th type I've tried. I tried 2 other powders and one capsule before I found Cleartract D-Mannose Urinary Tract Formula. I highly recommend taking the powder over any capsules. I will probably be on a maintenance dose of this for as long as I'm not in control of my diabetes.
Here's why I like this product.
1. It is inexpensive. 50 g is plenty for someone on a maintenance dose although I need at least 2 of these jars a month right now as my case is a harder case to deal with. Because I have to buy more, the low cost helps my budget. The cost you'll see here is just short of 1/2 the price of the jar at full retail price. One of the stores listed here will also ship free if the shipment weighs less than 3 lb. A full jar probably weighs 5 oz.
2. This is pure d-mannose powder, nothing else is added. When you buy d-mannose in a capsule you get other things. I won't go into the maker but when I ran out of the powder I had to buy the capsules locally and they contain cellulose, magnesium hydroxide, silca and magnesium stearate as well as vitamin C and Cranberry extract.
I will keep them as a back up but I only need pure d-mannose.
3. Believe it or not I love the convenience of the little scoop that comes in the jar. I'm not found of plastic but the little scoop is so much better than having a teaspoon on your bed side. It doesn't look like it's a teaspoon but it is.
Here is a quote going into more detail about d-mannose. This came from an advertisement for another powder called Progressive Laboratories U-Tract™ D-Mannose -- 50 g found on Vitacost.com where I get most of my vitamins. However the stores listed here seem to have very good prices.
"Over 90% of all urinary tract infections are caused by Escherichia coli (E. coli) which is found as part of the "normal microflora" in every intestinal tract. In most cases bacteria enter the urinary tract through the urethral opening. Many bacteria are simply washed away by the down-flow of urine. E. coli, however, are covered with tiny 'finger-like' projections. At the top of these projections are amino acid/sugar complexes called "lectins" which allow the bacteria to stick to the inside walls of the urinary tract and even work their way upward. D-Mannose, a naturally occurring simple sugar, sticks to the E. coli lectins even better than the lectins stick to human cells. When a large quantity of this sugar is present in the urine, it literally coats any E. coli present. They can no longer stick to urinary tract walls and are washed away with normal urination. Only very small amounts of D-mannose are metabolized by the body. Most is excreted through the kidneys into the urine and bladder, so it doesn't interfere with blood/sugar regulation, even in diabetics. Also, since it is absorbed in the upper gastro-intestinal tract, it does not relocate "friendly" E. coli or other beneficial bacteria normally present in the colon. "
I want to add here that I'm also taking Schiff Natural Cranberry Concentrate 1000mg and a probiotic as adjuncts to the Cleartract. D-mannose is 10x more potent then cranberry but I take one capsule every day or two along with my d-mannose and I take daily doses of a probiotic. I also practice careful hygene but that alone wasn't enough to stop the UTI's mainly because my out of control diabetic sugar levels encourage UTI growth by providing a friendly environment. This also provides a great environment for yeast infections which are not helped by antibiotic use.
Utislip.com has this quote re d-mannose and diabetics
"D-Mannose is a simple sugar. Simple sugars are made up of only one or two molecules and are processed so quickly in the digestive system that the pancreas does not detect them as a sugar that requires insulin for it to be absorbed into the blood stream. It should not affect your blood sugar level, though you should continue to monitor the glucose levels in your blood while taking this product, just to be sure. "