Urine Color | 19 Mind-Blowing Secrets Your Urine is Revealing About You

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urine color meanings | Man peeing to toilet bowl in restroom with soft-focus | urine color meaning | urine color chart

Do you know that your urine color can reveal a lot about your health? A quick peek into the toilet bowl can help you figure out how hydrated you are and more.

Changes in urine color are usually not a cause for concern. But, there are times that they can be signs of an underlying problem. Read on to gain some insights into what different urine colors mean.

Related: 10 Signs Your Kidneys Are In Trouble

What Your Urine Color Says About Your Health

Click here to jump to the Dehydration Urine Color Chart Infographic.

What is Urine?

Urine is what our kidneys make when they filter our blood. Based on how much fluid we have in the bloodstream, our urine color changes. In this way, our urine can tell us how hydrated or dehydrated we are.

Your urine can contain traces of thousands of different substances mixed in with plenty of water. Urine is like a thermometer for the body. Not that it tells you the temperature, but it tells you what’s going on inside the body.

What Color Should Urine Be

There isn’t one exact hue that’s considered the gold standard of normal urine. But your pee should fall somewhere on the yellow spectrum.

Urine gets its yellow color from urobilin. Urobilin, also known as urochrome, is a compound excreted by your kidneys. Our kidneys are the organs that filter our blood and produce pee.

What Does Straw-Colored Urine Mean?

If your pee looks like a transparent shade of yellow or pale straw, that’s also a good sign that you’re well hydrated. This urine color is very diluted from water that you don’t see a tinge of yellow. It looks clear.

The doctor shows the urinary system on blurred background | urine color | urine formation

What Causes Changes in Urine Color

In general, the more water you drink, the clearer your urine will look.

Dehydration affects the color of urine. Urine carries a yellow pigment called urobilin. Doctors refer to the standard color of urine as urochrome. Dark yellow pigment from bile makes urine appear darker – even brown! 

If you’re not drinking enough water, your body loses more water than it takes in. Your body then becomes dehydrated. And when you’re not getting enough liquids, your urine becomes brown. Sometimes even light amber or deep orange!

Fluids dilute the yellow pigments in urine, so the more you drink, the clearer your urine looks. When you drink less, the color becomes more concentrated. Severe dehydration can produce urine the color of amber.

Color of Urine Meaning

Dark Yellow Urine

Close up of male's hand holding container with urine sample isolated over dark background | Dark Yellow Urine | Urine Color

If you see a darker shade of yellow in the bowl or a different color altogether, this could be a sign of trouble. 

If your pee is dark yellow like amber or honey or dark orange, you might not be consuming enough water.

Urine also changes color depending on how much our kidney has filtered. The kidney filters blood and regulates how much water is in your body and bloodstream.

How does dehydration affect urine?

Tired exhausted dehydrated man runner drinking water bottle after workout | How does dehydration affect urine?

If you’re dehydrated, your body sucks water back into your body from the kidney. As your body’s coping mechanism, it will take the water out of the urine and put it back into your bloodstream. This leaves you with urine that has much less water content in it. And urine concentrated with all the solutes, proteins, and all the other stuff in your urine.

Other symptoms of dehydration are:
  • Fatigue 
  • Chills 
  • Bad Breath 
  • Sugar cravings
  • Muscle Cramps

Try upping your water intake. Doctors recommend 1.5 to 2 liters of water daily besides other fluids.  If that doesn’t help, schedule an appointment with your doctor to rule out any other issues.

Medications Causing Urine Color Changes

Medications Causing Urine Color Changes

Different pigments in the food you eat or medication you take can change the color of urine as they pass through our digestive tract. The color of our urine can change depending on what we’ve eaten. While many changes are benign, some could indicate that a dangerous health condition like diabetes is developing.

Pyridium Urine Color

Keep in mind that certain medications can turn your pee dark yellow or orange.

  • Phenazopyridine is a treatment for pain for a urinary tract infection or UTI. Pyridium is a brand of phenazopyridine.
  • Sulfasalazine is a treatment for ulcerative colitis.

Dark Brown Urine Color

 
If your pee looks dark brown like black tea, ask yourself did I recently eat rhubarb fava beans or aloe? These foods can lend your pee a brownish hue.
 
Yet, dark brown urine can also mean severe dehydration. This urine color is past the stages of dark yellow or orange urine. You’re so dehydrated that your urine is turning brown. It is your body screaming for more fluids and could be very damaging to your kidneys.
 
When you don’t have enough water to hydrate and get your kidneys going, it affects many of your organs.
 
Have you recently had a urologic procedure? If so, brown urine could also be the result of blood dissolving in your pee.

Another possible concern has to do with your liver. When your liver isn’t working well, the extra bilirubin in your blood can lead to urine tinted a darker color.

If you have a history of melanoma keep an eye out for brown tinge urine. Brown-tinged urine can be a sign that the cancer is progressing. If you’re noticing dark brown pee regularly, schedule an appointment with your doctor.

Pink or Red-Tinged Urine

 

If your urine has a pink or red tinge, you might be able to blame something you ate, like blueberries, beets, or rhubarb. 

As with other suspicious urine colors, medications are a potential culprit. The antibiotic rifampin has been known to turn a toilet bowl a shade of rouge.

However, if you aren’t taking new medications or filling your plate with red or purple-hued foods, it could be a tint of blood that’s making your pee pink. Make an appointment with your doctor to rule out a UTI, kidney stones, or another condition. 

Check out these 10 Signs Your Kidneys Are In Trouble.

Sometimes blood in the toilet could also come from other places and could be nothing. It could just mean that you wipe too hard or something like that. The blood in the toilet that you would want to investigate is the dark red burgundy urine color. 

Related: 12 Early Signs of Liver Cirrhosis

Blue or Green urine Colors 

Blue or green urine colors are often harmless. The green or blue dye in something you ate could be the cause of your cool-toned tingles. Asparagus can lend a green tinge to pee in addition to its infamous smell.

Heartburn reducers to muscle relaxers can also make your pee blue or green.  

These urine colors may also be signs of uncommon urinary infections. Fungus and yeast can cause urine to look a greenish hint. 

There’s a bacteria called pseudomonasIts presence in the urine can give it a green hue. Usually, there’s an odor and other signs of infection:

  • Burning
  • Pain 
  • Fevers 
  • and Other Things.

Rarely blue or green urine can be a sign of familial hypocalciuric hypercalcemia, a rare genetic disorder.

Here’s an infographic guide that you can use. Feel free to download, save and share it with your loved ones:

urine color chart | Dehydration Urine Color Chart

What Color is Your Urine Supposed to Be

The meaning of urine colors is not specific enough to tell you about what’s going on. Normal variations of urine are normal.

When it comes to your pee, a mellow shade of yellow is best.

Sometimes your diet or medication can change things up. If you see a change in your urine’s quality and color with the other symptoms present, it is best to consult a healthcare professional.

If you’re concerned about what you see before you flush, contact your healthcare provider.

Worried that you might have a Urinary Tract Infection? Check out this video to check its Symptoms:

What color is your urine?

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Knowing what is going on with your pee can be a little tricky. Many factors could change the color and quality of urine, but it’s not always clear-cut what these changes mean.

If you see any other symptoms with this change, it is best to talk with a healthcare provider before making any adjustments.

Drinking more fluids will also help keep things running smoothly and ensure that you stay hydrated during these hot summer months.

Have questions or concerns? Please let us know your concerns in the comments section below! We are always happy to chat!

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