You probably know that human urine is normally yellow. However, what does it mean if your urine is another color? Cloudy, discolored, or bloody urine may make you panic, and you may wonder what is wrong with you if this happens.
If you’ve ever wondered what you can learn about your health by checking out your urine, here’s some helpful information.
Normal Urine – How Does it Look?
First, you need to know what normal urine really looks like. Normally, urine ranges in color from pale, translucent yellow, to a darker amber color. Urine is a product of your body’s cellular metabolism and the liquid is sterile when expelled from your body.
Sometimes the things you eat and drink can affect the color of your urine, and certain diseases may also affect your urine color and appearance. The normal color of urine actually comes from a pigment known as urochrome.
If you have darker urine (amber), it usually means that you’re not getting the fluids that you need. Don’t worry if you’re on the darker end of normal. Just make sure that you start taking in more fluids.
Why is My Urine Clear?
Some people have very pale yellow or clear urine. What does this mean?
Usually, pale or clear urine is a sign that you are adequately hydrating your body. It’s very typical among individuals who drink plenty of water each day.
Of course, clear urine may occur in people that are drinking too much water and could be a sign that they could be close to dealing with water intoxication or over-hydration.
A significant increase in urination, particularly if the urine is clear, without drinking a lot of water may be a sign of high blood sugar.
In some cases, you may notice that urine becomes clear after you drink an excessive amount of alcohol.
One reason that increased urination and clear urine occurs is that you have taken in a lot of liquid. However, alcohol is also a diuretic, which will increase urination.
Alcohol forces your body to urinate more, so the body ends up extracting water from other parts of the body, and you end up peeing it all away, as well as your body’s essential electrolytes.
For this reason, after consuming too much alcohol, you often end up with a headache, and you may feel sick.
Abnormal Colors of Urine
In some cases, you may notice that your urine is completely different from any variation of normal. Here’s a look at some urine colors that could occur, as well as what could be causing them.
Cloudy/Murky Urine: If your urine looks cloudy or murky, it could be a sign that you have kidney stones or a urinary tract infection (UTI). Sometimes semen that is left in the urinary tract may result in cloudy urine in men.
Blue or Green Urine: Usually this occurs because of something that you had to eat or drink. Some drinks, medications, and foods can turn your urine blue or green, particularly if they include a blue dye.
Eating asparagus can also make urine look green and may change the odor of urine.
Foamy Urine: While this doesn’t have to do with the color of your urine, sometimes you can notice foam when you urinate. This usually is indicative that you have too much protein in the body.
Pink or Red Urine: Naturally red foods may cause you to have pink or red urine. Certain prescription drugs and laxatives can cause red urine as well.
Of course, pink or red urine could mean that you have blood in your urine. This could be a sign that you have a medical condition, such as kidney cancer, bladder stones, or an enlarged prostate.
Orange Urine: Rhubarb, beets, medications that contain dyes, and blackberries can all cause you to have orange urine. However, dehydration and jaundice may result in orange urine as well.
When Do You Need Medical Attention?
In many cases, something you eat or drink, or a medication, can result in a big change in urine color. Pay attention to changes in urine color and keep track of how often and when these changes occur.
If you rule out medication, food, or drink as the potential change, you need to call your doctor. Consider other symptoms that you may be dealing with that could be a sign of a health problem, such as :
- Painful urination
- Urinating frequently
- Waking up frequently at night to urinate
- Difficulty urinating
- Urinating less frequently
- Dribbling or leaking urine uncontrollably
- Producing more than average amounts of urine
Don’t panic when you first notice that your urine color isn’t abnormal, but it’s not something you should ignore.
Talk to your doctor to make sure you’re not dealing with a serious medical issue. If any of the above symptoms accompany the change in your urine, immediately contact your physician.