Sugar gives a whole new meaning to our sweet spots.
You may think that sugar causes vaginal infections but it’s absolutely NOT true! In fact quite, the opposite, topical sugar has been shown to be as effective as an antibiotic, metronidazole, in curing bacterial vaginosis infections.
The clinical trial data is available here. The study shows that in 560 women who were treated with one of three options (placebo, sucrose gel, metronidazole) that the sugar was as effective as the metronidazole in actually curing bacterial infections.
The reason is likely because the sugar is acting as a pre-biotic or “food” for the Lactobacilli bacteria that reside in our vaginas. Lactobacilli produces “lactic acid” which contributes to the acidic pH nature of the vagina, which ranges from 3.5 to 4.5 during reproductive years. So – if we don’t feed the Lactobacilli bacteria, our vaginal pH changes and becomes more basic (i.e. higher than 4.5), leading to other bacteria such as E. coli and Gardnerella setting in and creating bacterial vaginosis infections (read my blog article here).
The typical symptoms of bacterial vaginosis infections include smelly discharge and itching. As women age, we become more susceptible to bacterial vaginosis due to these changes in pH.
It’s important to recognize that just because we were taught that orally consumed and metabolized sugar leads to yeast infections, it doesn’t mean that topical sugar produces the same effects. In fact, it’s the opposite. Topical sugar is good for the vagina.
Something that I have learned over the last 5 years is that we need to challenge the preconceived notions around vaginal health as we age. Instead of avoiding sugar, we need sugar for the vagina. And the opposite may be true for Kegels – Kegels can be bad for aging women because we may need vaginal muscle relaxation instead of tightening (read my blog article here).
If you have discovered a health tip that is the opposite of what you experienced when you were younger, please share and email me at firstname.lastname@example.org anytime. We are all learning together.