You are what you pee. Kind of. It’s something we normally do without a second thought every day. Into the bowl it goes and we flush it away. Hold off on flushing for a second though, because your pee can actually give you some insight on your health.
What you want to take note of when you’re checking your urine is its color. Normally, it should be a yellow/gold color. When it’s a light yellow color, it usually means you’re well hydrated and good to go! The darker the yellow typically the more you’ll want to hydrate (drink water and maybe cut back on the caffeine.) On the flipside, if your urine is completely clear and you’re running to the bathroom often, you might be overhydrated and may want to cut your fluid intake back a bit.
Now, sometimes your urine might be a different color. Here are some colors you should take note of and what they may potentially indicate:
Orange – It’s typically a sign of dehydration, but could also mean that you’ve consumed a lot of orange foods like carrots or squash, or had some food with orange food coloring. It can also look like that right after exercise. The darker the orange, the more dehydrated you are. Perhaps you should drink some more water.
Brown – This is usually an indicator of intense dehydration, but could also mean you ate some fava beans. It could also signal a Urinary Tract Infection (UTI) or kidney stones. If your urine looks like this often, consult a physician.
Green- Pretty rare, but this could mean that you have an unusual UTI or you had an excessive amount of asparagus. It’s usually nothing, but if it persists see a doctor.
Red – This could mean that you have blood in your urine, or that you ate a lot of beets, blueberries other red colored food (or foods with red food dye). If you suspect that it may be blood, consult a doctor immediately.
Black – Not a good sign at all. See a doctor immediately.
There you have it! A short guide on what your pee can tell you. Next time you go, take a closer look to see what your pee says about your health!
For hydration’s sake, here is a handy urine color chart taken from www.navyfitness.org: