3 No-Gos If You Gotta Go: What Not To Eat Or Drink To Avoid Worsening Your Post-Pregnancy Incontinence

Posted on: 16 May 2016


Along with a beautiful baby and seemingly permanent bags under your eyes, pregnancy has somehow left you with the inability to go more than an hour or so without peeing, lest you ruin yet another pair of pants by leaking. But did you know what you're eating and drinking might play a part in why you have to go so often? If you're looking for foods and drinks to avoid due to your post-pregnancy incontinence, then here's what you need to know.

Leave the bubbly alone

It doesn't matter if it's cola, champagne, or anything in between – if it fizzes, you should probably leave the drink alone. The carbonization process that gives your drink those delightful bubbles can also make your bladder majorly irritated – and if your bladder is already sensitive, an irritated bladder is a bladder that will demand to be emptied. This goes double for sparkling alcoholic drinks (such as champagne), as both the carbonization and the alcohol will lead to the same result: the restaurant's bathroom. Go for non-sparkling, non-alcoholic drinks like non-citrus fruit juices (more on those below), virgin cocktails, or even just plain water, and let other people deal with the carbonated beverages.

Lay off the citrus

Whether in foods or in drinks, if everything you eat has been graced by an orange or sprinkled with lemon juice, you might want to pull back and try a different seasoning. The acid in these foods and drinks can make it that much harder to control your urge to pee, and thus require more pit stops than their non-acidic friends. A splash of lemon juice on fish or a lime in a cola is probably not going to do anything, but if your normal order is tangerine chicken with orange juice and a side of fruit salad, you may have found the culprit to your frequent restroom runs.

Limit the spice

Your tongue might love super spicy chili or five-alarm jerk chicken, but if you already have a problem with incontinence, chances are that your body likes it considerably less. The capsaicin in the spicy foods you love so much can do more than make your eyes water – it can irritate your bladder lining, which in turn makes you need to go more often (and since when does an irritated bladder sound like fun?). You don't have to eat your favorite spicy foods without any heat, though – just make sure to limit the spice levels within your food to a level that, while still delicious, won't cause issues with your bladder.

A Reminder

In addition to keeping these food tips in mind, remember to talk to your gynecologist about your post-pregnancy incontinence; they can recommend exercises to strengthen your pelvic floor, stopping you from needing to urinate as frequently. Contact a doctor, such as Rawtani Meera MD, for more information.