Health Tips – Did you know that the change of color, odor, and consistency of urine can be an important clue to one’s health status? Urine can show what we eat, how much water we have drunk, and what diseases do we suffer.
Analysis of urine to know our health have been recognized since thousands of years ago. According to Thomas Griebling, MD, MPH, urologist at the University of Kansas, urine is like a window to see what happens in the body. “Various things circulating in the body, including bacteria, fungi, protein, and sugar, will come out through urine,” he said.
Our bodies also release excess water and “junk” that has been filtered by the kidneys through urine. “The primary function of urine is to carry out toxins substances from the body so they do not accumulate in the body which could be bad for our health,” said Anthony Smith, MD, a urologist.
That is why, if we find any unusual changes in color or odor of urine (outside of food consumed), it could be a sign of health problems.
Yellow color in urine color comes from pigments called urochorme. Normal urine color is pale yellow to yellow. Dark yellow urine color is a sign of lack of water in the body. Conversely, urine colors that are too clear could be a sign that you are drinking too much water or are taking diuretics (water absorbent which makes the urine volume increased).
Urine color can also vary according to the foods we eat. For example, eating carrots could make it a little orange, whereas drugs could also change the color of urine.
What needs to be aware of is if the urine’s color becomes slightly reddish because it could be a sign that there is blood in the urine. “If you see any blood or if the urine has a dark color, it could be a sign of infection,” says Smith.
Normally, urine does not have a strong odor. If you find a sharp smell, you may get an infection or kidney stones often cause the smell of ammonia. While a sweet smell that evaporates from the urine can be a signs of diabetes.