Does the color of my urine matter?

One of the greatest feelings ever for a human being to experience is releasing urine (pee) after holding it in for a long time. Finally getting to release it can be such a refreshing experience.

Urinating is a healthy activity which the body engages in to rid itself of toxic and unwanted substances. However, keen attention should be given to one’s urine because the color of urine communicates a lot about an individual’s health. The natural color of urine is yellow, but, in some cases the color may be white, blue, red, green or even black. The different pigments in foods eaten or medications taken is carried through the digestive tract, and effect change in color of urine. Learning about the various colors of urine can increase awareness about one’s health and the necessary steps to take.

Below is a color chart which simplifies the various colors of urine and their corresponding explanations.

 

CLEAR/ WHITE URINE

Clear urine is a sign that an individual is taking much more water than the body requires. Even though being hydrated is a good thing, overhydration can rob one’s body of electrolytes which can cause comas, seizures and cardiac arrest. There is no need to panic if one sees that the urine is clear, but constant clear urine should alert the said individual to reduce his or her water intake.

YELLOWISH TO AMBER

This is a color which indicates normal urine. There is no cause for alarm when the color of urine is yellow.

RED/ PINK

Red or pink urine may result from eating foods with naturally deep pink or magenta pigments such as beetroot and blueberries. However, health conditions such as enlarged prostate, kidney stones and tumors in the bladder or kidney.

It is also possible that the color may be red as a result of the presence of blood in the urine.

ORANGE

If urine appears orange, it could be a symptom of dehydration. If urine is orange and accompanied by light colored stool, bile may be getting to the bloodstream due to issues with bile ducts or liver. Adult-onset jaundice can also cause orange urine.

BLUE/ GREEN

Blue or green urine is a very rare event which could be caused by food coloring, or the result of dyes in medical tests performed on kidneys or bladder.

Pseudomonas aeruginosa bacterial infection can also cause urine to turn blue, green or even purple.

DARK BROWN

In most cases, dark brown urine indicates dehydration. It can also be a side effect of certain medications such as metronidazole (Flagyl) and chloroquine (Aralen). Dark brown urine could also be a sign of liver disease, as it can be caused by bile getting into the urine.

CLOUDY

Cloudy urine could be a sign of urinary tract infection, a symptom of chronic diseases or kidney conditions. Cloudy urine could also be an indicator of dehydration. In cases where cloudy urine is accompanied with foam or bubbles, one should immediately see a doctor because that could be a symptom of serious health conditions such as a Crohn’s disease.

Talking about urine amongst an elite group is quite rare, but knowing facts about urine including its odor, consistency and color can positively influence one’s lifestyle and wellbeing. People need to learn more about their urine and how best they can ensure that they stay healthy.

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