For those who don’t know what this is about:
Photo Credit: via Wikimedia
Former President Richard Nixon officially declared a “war on drugs” 45 years ago today. His primary motivation was to go after anti-war protesters and black people. It doesn’t get clearer than this frank explanation from one of Nixon’s top policy advisers, John Ehrlichman:
“We knew we couldn’t make it illegal to be either against the war or black, but by getting the public to associate the hippies with marijuana and blacks with heroin, and then criminalizing both heavily, we could disrupt those communities. We could arrest their leaders, raid their homes, break up their meetings, and vilify them night after night on the evening news. Did we know we were lying about the drugs? Of course we did.”
Disturbing, right? Drug prohibition has resulted in tens of millions of people getting arrested and locked up behind bars, and the U.S. has spent more than $1 trillion to make that happen. The tone was set from the beginning that there will always be money to fight the war on drugs.
Every year, more money is requested to fight the drug war and now the U.S. spends more than $51 billion annually on the war on drugs. There are more than 1.5 million arrests for drugs each year, the large majority of which are for possession only. But no matter how much money we spend and how many people get arrested, drugs have been around for thousands of years and they always will be.
So what should we do instead?
More than 50% of Americans support legalizing and regulating marijuana. Twenty-five states have medical marijuana laws, four states and Washington, D.C. have legalized marijuana, and more than 20 states have decriminalized possession. But marijuana remains illegal at the federal level and of the 1.5 million arrests each year for drugs, about half are for low-level marijuana law violations. States that legalized marijuana are seeing great benefits – thousands of people are no longer getting arrested and having their lives ruined over marijuana, and the states are collecting huge amounts of money in taxes.
Arresting someone for using or possessing a drug is ineffective, costly and unjust. Most people (80-90%) who use drugs don’t go on to develop problems with them, as neuroscientist Dr. Carl Hart often emphasizes. If someone struggles with addiction and wants to get treatment, they should not fear arrest or other punishment for admitting their drug use.
The U.S. is home to less than five percent of the world’s population but nearly 25% of its prisoners, in part because of the overly harsh consequences of a drug conviction. Despite comparable drug use and selling rates across racial groups, African Americans and Latinos are disproportionately punished for drug law violations.
The Drug Policy Alliance and our allies have been at the forefront advocating for harm reduction policies like 911 Good Samaritan Laws and access to the overdose-reversal drug naloxone for many years. But there are some unconventional ways to deal with drug misuse that deserve more attention, like supervised injection facilities and heroin-assisted treatment. Earlier this year a Maryland state legislator made history and introduced a sweeping drug policy reform package calling for the decriminalization of all drugs, treatment on demand for anyone who wants it, and the creation of supervised injection facilities and heroin-assisted treatment programs. The mayor of Ithaca also put forward a similar proposal. To deal with this issue more effectively, our drug policies will have to come from a public health approach, not a criminal justice one.
Just like with sex education, we know that abstinence-only drug education programs do not work. We need to provide honest and accurate drug information so that young people can make the safest choice possible.
We have to be willing to look outside the U.S. to see what’s working elsewhere to move forward with drug policy reform. Portugal has shown that there are many benefits to decriminalizing all drugs. Heroin-assisted treatment programs have been very successful in places like Switzerland, Denmark, Canada, the Netherlands, the United Kingdom, Germany, Spain, and elsewhere. Canada and Uruguay are moving forward with new marijuana legalization policies at the national level, and the U.S. should do the same.
Hopefully we’ll be in a much better place five years from now, given the momentum we’re seeing on issues like criminal justice reform, overdose prevention, and marijuana legalization. Let’s develop an exit strategy before the 50th anniversary of the drug war in 2021 – let’s end drug prohibition and begin telling the story of what it was like when drugs were illegal.
This piece first appeared on the Drug Policy Alliance Blog.
A year from now, Google, Amazon and Apple might be listening in on your living room. And you’ll be glad of it.
All three of those companies are working on or have announced voice assistants that sit in people’s houses and talk to them. The boxes – which function as speakers, and look like them too – are meant do everything from asking questions to operating various parts of peoples’ houses.
They represent the future of technology, at least according to some people. And there is reason to be scared, maybe.
Many people are already terrified about the idea that any company is listening to them, through their phone. But it already happens, regularly – Google and Facebook both listen in on their users, for instance, using the sound to help find information but also to better target advertising.
And that concern might become yet more pressing as those same technologies make their way into our living rooms. Google launched its Home speaker at its I/O event last month; Amazon has had its own version of the technology available for months; Apple is rumoured to be working on something similar.
The creepiness of such recording can be laid bare by listening in on all of the recordings that Google has made of your what you’ve said to it. Something that’s always on and placed in your living room will be able to hear even more.
But the same things that make people worry are exactly the things that people like. It is strange to think of a company listening to you while you have an argument about which person in the house forgot to pick up milk, for instance; but it might be convenient if Amazon could suggest that it orders some for delivery in the next hour.
In the coming months, the decision between privacy and convenience is going to become more and more difficult to make. In almost all cases, getting one means giving up the other – and in the case of extreme convenience, we might be giving up all semblance of a private life.
These kind of privacy invasions are part and parcel of having domestic help, of course, whether or not that help is from a human or from a robot. The difference is that a cleaner or a butler doesn’t usually send your personal information off to their boss so that it can be scanned and catalogued so that they can better target marketing at you.
It will be into this environment that Apple’s rumoured home assistant is launched. And that could cause a problem, because of Apple’s commitment to keep its users data safe and private; a commitment that goes hand-in-hand with its relative lack of expertise in artificial intelligence, machine learning and other ways of manipulating huge amounts of personal data.
Anyone that uses Siri, for instance, will have realised that it isn’t quite as good at searching through information as Google’s own voice assistant. But that is partly because the work and money that Google has thrown at trying to understand us.
Google is able to use exactly the same technology that powers its assistant to power the kinds of advertising that it makes money from. And Amazon can ensure that people are buying things through its Echo box and increase its revenues.
Apple has always been far more worried about using its users’ information, and has historically had less reason to because it makes money from selling its products. Its limitations are technical – since it doesn’t have the huge artificial intelligence capabilities that Google has – but they’re also moralistic, in as far as it doesn’t want to send or collect data about its users, and has much less reason to.
But Apple’s dilemma will be our own: data isn’t useful on its own, but only becomes helpful when it’s combined with other things. The trouble is that doing so always means sharing it with someone else – the most helpful assistant is the one that divulges all of our secrets.
The computers are listening. And you’re probably ready to talk.
Comment: The Sinclair Lewis quote, “When fascism comes to America, it will be wrapped in the flag and carrying a cross,” comes to mind. The Orwellian dystopian image of vans driving up and down your street with listening devices is certainly a possibility people will just accept under the guise of “It’s for your safety”, but why go to such measures when the dumbed-down masses will welcome such invasion of privacy right onto the living room table they eat their microwaved dinner off while watching Big Brother…
Oh, the irony.
Caveat: Michael is a Christian who believes we are about to experience the Rapture.
With permission from
Over the past 12 months, stock market investors around the planet have lost trillions of dollars. Since this time last June, stocks have crashed in 6 of the world’s 8 largest economies, and stocks in the other two are down as well. The charts that you are about to see are absolutely stunning, and they are clear evidence that a new global financial crisis has already begun. Of course it is true that we are still in the early chapters of this new crisis and that there is much, much more damage to be done, but let us not minimize the carnage that we have already witnessed.
In general, there have been three major waves of financial panic over the past 12 months. Late last August we saw the biggest financial shaking since the financial crisis of 2008, then in January and February there was an even bigger shaking, and now a third “wave” has begun in June. Not all areas around the globe have been affected equally by each wave, but without a doubt this new financial crisis is a global phenomenon.
Let’s talk about China first. The Chinese economy is the second largest on the entire planet, and since this time last year Chinese stocks are down an astounding 40 percent…
As things have started to unravel in China, the Chinese have been selling off U.S. debt and U.S. stocks like crazy. The following comes from Bloomberg…
For the past year, Chinese selling of Treasuries has vexed investors and served as a gauge of the health of the world’s second-largest economy.
The People’s Bank of China, owner of the world’s biggest foreign-exchange reserves, burnt through 20 percent of its war chest since 2014, dumping about $250 billion of U.S. government debt and using the funds to support the yuan and stem capital outflows.
While China’s sales of Treasuries have slowed, its holdings of U.S. equities are now showing steep declines.
Unfortunately for China, their economy just continues to slow down, and George Soros is so alarmed by this and a potential “Brexit” that he has been selling off stocks and buying enormous amounts of gold in anticipation of an even bigger global downturn.
Japan has the third largest economy in the world, and over the past year Japanese stocks are down a total of 26 percent from the peak…
Personally, I have been extremely alarmed by what has been happening in Japan lately. Japanese stocks were down almost 500 points last night, and overall the Nikkei is down a whopping 1,800 points so far in June.
Of course the Japanese economy as a whole is essentially a basket case at this point. For a detailed analysis of this, please see my previous article entitled “Watch Japan – For All Is Not Well In The Land Of The Rising Sun“.
Germany has the fourth largest economy in the world, and over the past year their stocks have fallen 19 percent from the peak of the market…
The key thing to watch for in Germany are serious troubles at their biggest bank. I wrote a long article about the slow-motion implosion of Deutsche Bank last month, and just this week Deutsche Bank stock hit an all-time low.
The fifth largest economy on the planet belongs to the United Kingdom, and since last June their stocks have fallen about 13 percent…
One week from today, the “Brexit” vote will be held in the UK, and if they vote to leave the EU that could have very serious economic and financial implications for them and for the rest of Europe as well. For an in-depth look at this, please see my previous article entitled “June 23, 2016: The Brexit Vote Could Change EVERYTHING And Plunge Europe Into Financial Chaos“.
France has the sixth largest economy in the world, and over the past year French stocks are down 20 percent from the peak of the market…
The French economy is really struggling these days, and we have not heard much about it in the U.S. media, but there have been tremendous riots in major cities in France in recent weeks.
The seventh largest economy on our planet belongs to India. Even though India is facing some very serious economic problems, their stocks are doing okay for the moment. Even though stocks in India are down over the past 12 months, we have not seen a major financial crisis over there just yet.
But there is definitely a major crisis in the eighth largest economy in the world. Italian stocks are down a staggering 32 percent from the peak of the market. That means approximately a third of all stock market wealth in Italy is already gone…
Earlier this year, I wrote about the horrifying collapse of the Italian banking system that has greatly accelerated since the start of 2016. It looks like virtually all of their big banks will ultimately need to be bailed out, and this threatens to become a far bigger crisis than the crisis in Greece ever was.
And let us not leave off the ninth largest economy in the world. Not too long ago, CNN ran an article entitled “Brazil: Economic collapse worse than feared“. So not only are they admitting that the ninth largest economy on the globe is collapsing, they are also admitting that it is even worse than what the experts had anticipated.
So did I leave anyone off the list?
Ah yes, I haven’t even addressed what has been going on in the United States yet.
U.S. stocks did crash last August, but then they recovered.
Then they crashed again in January, but then they recovered again.
Now U.S. stocks have been taking another tumble here in June, but we are being assured that there is nothing to worry about.
Meanwhile, the underlying numbers for the U.S. economy just continue to get worse and worse and worse. If you have any doubt about this, please see the article that I posted yesterday entitled “15 Facts About The Imploding U.S. Economy That The Mainstream Media Doesn’t Want You To See“.
Hopefully this article will clear a lot of things up. In this piece, I have presented undeniable evidence that a new global financial crisis has begun over the past 12 months. We have not seen global stock declines of this nature since the great financial crisis of 2008, but much worse is still to come.
I would love to be wrong about that last part.
It would be wonderful if the worst was now behind us and good times for the global financial system were ahead.
Unfortunately, every single indicator that I am watching is telling me just the opposite.
*About the author: Michael Snyder is the founder and publisher of The Economic Collapse Blog. Michael’s controversial new book about Bible prophecy entitled “The Rapture Verdict” is available in paperback and for the Kindle on Amazon.com.*
A horrific attack unfolded this week when Omar Mateen entered a nightclub in Orlando, Florida before allegedly opening fire killing 50 and injuring scores more. Mateen would eventually be gunned down himself by police.
At face value it appears to be another “extremist” attack – an extension of America’s ongoing “War on Terror.” In reality Mateen is instead an extension of America’s use of terrorism as a geopolitical tool to fight its enemies abroad and maintain paralyzing fear, division, and hysteria at home.
Mateen, the Latest in Long Line of Known Terrorists West Failed to Stop
The London Guardian’s article, “Orlando gunman known to FBI shows difficulty of ‘lone wolf’ cases,” would cite Erroll Southers, a former FBI counterintelligence and terrorism agent:
“What this illustrates is the difficulty in trying to identify people who would do things like Mr Mateen did today,” Southers said. “There is no profile.”
However, Southers is wrong. There most certainly is a profile to which each and every high-profile “terrorist” attacking targets across the West from North America to Europe adheres. Each and every suspect has been known to Western law enforcement and intelligence agencies before carrying out their deadly attacks.
The Boston bombing suspects were on FBI and CIA watch lists months before their deadly attack in April 2013 according to the US State Department’s own Voice of America news service. The Paris attack suspects were known to European security agencies and tracked for years save for the final 6 months before the attacks were finally carried out. Two of the Brussels attackers this year had been arrested for violent crimes including terrorism before being inexplicably released.
Considering these most recent examples and many others, it is not a matter of the West being blindsided by terrorism – but rather Western security agencies either incapable or disinterested in stopping militants from carrying out attacks which are then shamelessly and very intentionally exploited for political gain both at home and abroad.
What’s more alarming is that the recent case in Florida appears to be a textbook case of a US FBI entrapment case gone wrong. Quite literally every aspect of the case, from Mateen’s background, to how he gained law enforcement’s attention before the attacks, to aspects of his personality including allegations that he was mentally ill, mirrors almost identically two FBI entrapment cases which unfolded last year.
Inspired by Islamic State or by the FBI?
The Intercept would report in its 2015 article, “Another “Terror” Arrest; Another Mentally Ill Man, Armed by the FBI,” that (emphasis added):
U.S. law enforcement officials announced another terror arrest on Monday, after arming a mentally ill man and then charging him with having guns.
ABC News quoted a “senior federal official briefed on the arrest” as saying: “This is a very bad person arrested before he could do very bad things.”
But in a sting reminiscent of so many others conducted by the FBI since 9/11, Alexander Ciccolo, 23, “aka Ali Al Amriki,” was apparently a mentally ill man who was doing nothing more than ranting about violent jihad and talking (admittedly in frightening ways) about launching attacks—until he met an FBI informant. At that point, he started making shopping lists for weapons.
The Intercept would also reference the FBI’s affidavit (.pdf), stating (emphasis added):
According to the affidavit, Ciccolo first talked to the FBI informant about attacking two bars and a police station. Later, he spoke of attacking a college campus with a homemade pressure-cooker bomb like the one used in the Boston Marathon terror attack; he also talked about using guns and a lot of ammo. Ciccolo, according to the affidavit, then “ordered the firearms from a confidential human source (“CHS”) working with the FBI.”
The list of weapons provided to the mentally-ill suspect by the FBI informant is shocking. Revealed in the official FBI affidavit (.pdf), the weapons included a 9mm Glock 17, a 10mm Glock 20, a .223 Colt AR-15 rifle, (referred to by the media as an “assault rifle”), and a 556 Sig Arms SG550 rifle (also often referred to as an assault rifle). The AR-15 rifle and Glock are the same weapons allegedly used by Omar Mateen in this most recent massacre.
Also included in the affidavit is the same hysterical rhetoric encouraged by FBI informants now evident in the recent actions of terror suspect Omar Mateen in Florida. The FBI quite literally moved Ciccolo from A-Z up to and including placing weapons into his hands before finally arresting him.
In Mateen’s case, it is alleged that he legally purchased his firearms. However, another 2015 FBI entrapment case includes a suspect the FBI was similarly cultivating, and instead of providing the suspect with weapons, he was allowed to purchase them on his own – two M-15 5.56 semi-automatic rifles.
NBC Cincinnati affiliate WLWT5 would report in their 2015 article, “FBI: Cincinnati man bought rifles, planned to attack U.S. Capitol,” that (emphasis added):
Agents said that on Tuesday and Wednesday Cornell met with the informant the final time to plan their trip to D.C. to execute their plan. He purchased two Armalite M-15 5.56 mm semi-automatic rifles Wednesday morning, along with 600 rounds of ammunition, and was arrested.
Cornell bought the rifles at the Point Blank gun store on Harrison Avenue in Colerain Township. He passed a background check and paid $1,900 in cash, $700 for each rifle and about $400 for the ammunition.
The gun store owner, John Dean, said FBI agents notified him that Cornell was going to come in to buy the guns about 10 minutes before he entered the store.
Dean said the agents told him to allow the purchase and agents would stop Cornell after he left the store.
Upon reading the FBI’s own affidavits, it appears the only difference between Ciccolo, Cornell, and Mateen is that the former two were arrested before committing mass murder while Mateen was allowed to carry out his attack. Whether or not FBI informants were handling Mateen before the attack remains a mystery. But it should be noted that the FBI is conducting – according to the New York Times – hundreds of such entrapment cases.
The NYT in its article, “F.B.I. Steps Up Use of Stings in ISIS Cases,” claims that (emphasis added):
The F.B.I. has significantly increased its use of stings in terrorism cases, employing agents and informants to pose as jihadists, bomb makers, gun dealers or online “friends” in hundreds of investigations into Americans suspected of supporting the Islamic State, records and interviews show.
Undercover operations, once seen as a last resort, are now used in about two of every three prosecutions involving people suspected of supporting the Islamic State, a sharp rise in the span of just two years, according to a New York Times analysis. Charges have been brought against nearly 90 Americans believed to be linked to the group.
It is now revealed that the FBI had interviewed Florida shooting suspect Omar Mateen twice and investigated him on at least two separate occasions in 2013 and 2014. This was also reported by the NYT in their article, “Omar Mateen: From Early Promise to F.B.I. Surveillance,” which stated:
…the Federal Bureau of Investigation was called in after reports from Mr. Mateen’s co-workers that he, the American-born son of Afghan immigrants, had suggested he may have had terrorist ties. The F.B.I. interviewed him twice, but after surveillance, records checks and witness interviews, agents were unable to verify any terrorist links and closed their investigation.
Then, in 2014, the F.B.I. discovered a possible tie between Mr. Mateen and Moner Mohammad Abusalha, who had grown up in nearby Vero Beach and then became the first American suicide bomber in Syria, where he fought with the Nusra Front, a Qaeda-aligned militant group. Again, the F.B.I. closed its inquiry after finding “minimal” contact between the two men.
Considering NYT’s report regarding the vast scale of the FBI’s entrapment cases targeting possible “Islamic State” sympathizers, it seems highly improbable that undercover informants were not also working on Mateen. With hundreds of cases ongoing and with many of the cases involving the transfer of real weapons to suspects who have been encouraged sometimes for months by informants to carry out deadly attacks – could the FBI have lost control of such a case – in Florida perhaps?
The FBI Has “Accidentally” Allowed its Own Ops to go Live Before
Has the FBI ever lost control of such operations? The answer to that question is also provided by the New York Times which in its 1993 article titled, “Tapes Depict Proposal to Thwart Bomb Used in Trade Center Blast,” reported (emphasis added):
Law-enforcement officials were told that terrorists were building a bomb that was eventually used to blow up the World Trade Center, and they planned to thwart the plotters by secretly substituting harmless powder for the explosives, an informer said after the blast.
The informer was to have helped the plotters build the bomb and supply the fake powder, but the plan was called off by an F.B.I. supervisor who had other ideas about how the informer, Emad A. Salem, should be used, the informer said.
The account, which is given in the transcript of hundreds of hours of tape recordings Mr. Salem secretly made of his talks with law-enforcement agents, portrays the authorities as in a far better position than previously known to foil the Feb. 26 bombing of New York City’s tallest towers. The explosion left six people dead, more than 1,000 injured and damages in excess of half a billion dollars.
The decision by the FBI supervisor eventually led to the successful detonation of the bomb by terrorists known to the FBI and subject to an undercover investigation. The explosion would kill 6 and injure hundreds more.
At the very least there is a strong possibility that the FBI’s tactics of entrapping suspects and its practice of peddling toxic rhetoric and even placing actual weapons into the hands of mentally unstable individuals led to the tragedy in Florida just as it did in New York City in 1993. At worst – it was intentionally done as a means of using terrorism domestically to manipulate the American people just as the US uses terrorism abroad to fight its proxy wars.
The “Islamic State” Operates Out of NATO Territory
The recent attack in Florida comes at a time when Syria’s border with Turkey is now nearly sealed. While alternative media sources have been reporting for years that the Islamic State has been resupplied and reinforced from NATO territory via Turkey, it is now a fact being reported by prominent Western news services as well.
The London Telegraph in a recent article titled, “US-backed Syrian opposition forces surround Isil in key city and cut off main supply route,” admits that (emphasis added):
…Syrian opposition forces have completely surrounded the Islamic State-held stronghold of Manbij and cut off the group’s main route to the outside world…..
The loss of Manbij will be a huge loss to the group. It had been a waypoint on an Isil supply line between the Turkish border and the extremist group’s de facto capital, Raqqa.
Also recently, the Washington Times article titled, “Turkey offers joint ops with U.S. forces in Syria, wants Kurds cut out,” would quote the Turkish Foreign Minister himself admitting (emphasis added):
Joint operations between Washington and Ankara in Manbji, a well-known waypoint for Islamic State fighters, weapons and equipment coming from Turkey bound for Raqqa, would effectively open “a second front” in the ongoing fight to drive the Islamic State, also known as ISIS or ISIL, from Syria’s borders, [Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu] said.
The Foreign Minister of Turkey admits that “Islamic State” forces – fighters, weapons, and equipment – are pouring out of Turkey’s own territory “bound for Raqqa,” but never explains how the most notorious terrorist organization of the 21st century could move enough men and materiel through a NATO-member state to wage an entire war with, without being stopped before reaching Syria. Also not explained is where the “Islamic State” is procuring the weapons that it is moving through Turkey.
While the US claims to fight the “Islamic State” as well as pose as a victim of its violence, its NATO partner Turkey is quite literally the source of the terrorist organization’s fighting capacity, with US forces permanently stationed in Turkey for decades and Turkey having been a NATO member since the 1950s. Despite open acknowledgments that the “Islamic State” is operating out of Turkey, the US has used the presence of the terrorist organization inside Syria as a pretext for intervening in the war directly.
If Omar Mateen was “inspired” by the “Islamic State,” he was inspired by a terrorist organization that at any time the US and its NATO allies could crush – but who have intentionally allowed to operate within NATO territory itself.
It seems that both in Syria and at home in America, the special interests running Washington have found in the “Islamic State” a perfect tool with which to advance its various political agendas.
by Greg White
June 17th, 2016
Drinking an 8-ounce glass of cranberry juice per day can help curb the risk of urinary tract infections (UTIs) in women, according to a recent study. The results suggest cranberry juice could reduce the amount of antibiotics used to treat UTIs.
The study, published by the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, found that drinking a glass of cranberry juice a day decreased symptomatic UTIs by almost 40 percent among women with UTIs. This could help ease widespread dependency on antibiotics in treating recurrent UTIs.
“Currently the primary approach to reducing symptomatic events of UTI is the use of chronic antibiotics for suppression, an approach associated with side effects and development of antibiotic resistance. This study shows that consuming one 8-ounce (240 ml) glass of cranberry juice a day reduces the number of times women suffer from repeat episodes of symptomatic UTI and avoids chronic suppressive antibiotics,” Dr. Kalpana Gupta, Professor of Medicine at Boston University’s School of Medicine, said in a press release.
Some health authorities believe cranberries can significantly reduce the worldwide consumption of antibiotics and better the life of women who have recurrent UTI symptoms.
The 24 week study involved 373 women and 18 clinical sites dotted across the U.S. and France. It is the largest clinical trial to investigate the impact cranberry juice consumption has on UTIs. The trial adds to a growing body of literature on how cranberry juice can boost urinary tract health and lower symptomatic UTIs among chronic UTI patients.
The team attempted to determine if recurrent UTI sufferers could be shielded from recurring infections by consuming cranberry juice. The women in the study were 40 years of age on average and had two UTIs within the last year. Over the course of the study, participants were chosen at random to consume a daily 8-ounce glass of cranberry juice or a placebo drink without cranberries.
The rate of UTIs among cranberry juice drinkers was significantly less than non-cranberry juice drinkers. Over the course of six months, approximately 39 cranberry drinkers had a recurring UTI in comparison to 67 in the placebo group.
Antibiotics tend to be the most common course of treatment for UTIs. Woman who have recurring UTIs are sometimes prescribed low-dose antibiotics. Unfortunately, the widespread use and misuse of antibiotics has spurred resistance across the globe. In fact, according to the World Health Organization (WHO), there is a 50 percent resistance rate to one of the most commonly used antibiotics to treat UTIs.
Fortunately, cranberries posses a distinct group of compounds, including Type-A PACs (or proanthocyanidins) that thwart bacteria from sticking and spurring infections. Furthermore, recent studies have found a new class of compounds, xyloglucan oligosaccharides, which have comparable anti-bacterial properties against E. coli as PACs. This means there are a variety of elements in cranberries that can aid health.
These compounds are present in a myriad of products, including cranberry juice cocktail, 100 percent juice, dried cranberries and cranberry extracts. Nevertheless, the bulk of the studies centered on cranberries and UTIs have used cranberry juice.
“The key to cranberry’s benefit is consuming a glass daily to help avoid the infection altogether,” explained Gupta. “Most people wait to drink cranberry juice until they have a UTI, but once the symptoms start they’ll likely need a course of antibiotics.”
According to Gupta, women with UTIs can feel hopeful that cranberries could offer a potential solution to both UTIs and the growing threat of antibiotic resistance.