What Does the Color of Your Urine Say about Your Health
Truth be told, we generally don’t pay much attention to urine and we barely give it more than a glance as it goes down the toilet. However, for hundreds of years, or more precisely since the beginning of medicine, urine has been used as a very handy diagnostic tool. Its basic characteristics like smell, color, and density can tell a lot about the state of health your body is in.
The first thing that changes due to certain medical conditions is the color of urine, which can range from deep amber to a light straw color, with many variations in between.
However, it must be noted that urine can temporarily change colors depending on your diet and (de)hydration, and also some medication may affect it. Sometimes, certain foods and medications can change the color of your pee to green, but that’s very rare.
So, hold your flushing, let’s find out what’s normal, what’s strange, and what’s alarming:
1. Transparent or Clear Urine
When your urine is transparent, it’s a sign that you have been drinking too much water, and your body has excess amounts of it. Nothing serious, but you may want to cut back.
2. Pale Straw-Colored Pee
This is the color your urine should have, and it means you’re normal, healthy, and well-hydrated. Good job, your body is in balance.
3. Transparent Yellow-Colored Urine
This is also a perfectly normal color for urine – you are healthy and well-hydrated.
4. Dark-Yellow Urine
It’s still more or less normal, but it indicates you’re on the verge of dehydration. Maybe you should start sipping a glass of water immediately.
5. Amber-Colored Pee
You are exhausted and your body urgently needs to be rehydrated. You are close to being completely dehydrated, drink water at once.
6. Maple-Syrup-Colored Urine
According to studies, this color indicates an existing liver problem. It might be that you’re just dehydrated, but it could also be liver disease.
7. Pink to Reddish-Colored Urine
Don’t worry just yet. If you have been stuffing yourself with foods such as blueberries, rhubarb, or beets, then you’re probably just fine. However, if not, it might indicate you have blood in your urine. This might pass by itself, but it could be a sign of a disease, like kidney infection, kidney disease, cancer of the kidney, bladder or prostate, or a urinary tract infection. It might also indicate some other underlying problem, like lead or mercury poisoning.
If your urine is pink to reddish, pay a visit to your doctor immediately.
8. Orange-Colored Urine
If your urine is orange-colored you might be dehydrated, but it is more commonly present among those suffering from food poisoning.
9. Green-Colored Urine
Yap, it’s different and weird. There is a rare genetic disorder which might color your urine blue or green, also there are certain bacteria that might infect your urinary tract and do the same thing, but it’s probably a food dye in something you ate, or some medication you took. However, if it doesn’t pass, visit your physician.
10. Fizzing or Foamy
If occasional, don’t worry – it’s just a hydraulic effect. However, if it persists then it might mean you have surplus protein in your diet, or an underlying kidney problem – this is when you want to visit your doctor.
You can tell a lot from the color of your urine, but it doesn’t replace any sophisticated analysis such as a urinalysis, which should be part of your regular checkups. Just consider that some serious signs of something being wrong, such as blood in the urine, are often invisible to the naked eye and can only be picked up during urinalysis.