Everyone knows it. It is not a pleasant topic. You may be one of those people that goes to the bathroom and does not focus too much on the appearance, but doctors say that it is necessary to know what the color of your urine is. It is not only important to notice if you have pain or not. Its color can show you certain signs: poor diet, sicknesses, hydration…
Urine is composed of water and other waste substances. If something is not working right in your body, your urine may change colors. Whether it is due to your diet, inflammation, or even taking some kind of medication, it can cause changes that you must keep in mind. Let’s look at all of the facts on your health.
1. Clear color
Clear colored urine is a good symptom. It means that you are well hydrated. When you drink large amounts of water, the kidneys filter urine more easily and this makes it have a much clearer tone. It is a good sign.
When your pee is the color of a citrus-flavored soft drink, it’s probably because of meds like high-dose vitamin B2, the UTI drug phenazopyridine, or the antibiotic isoniazid. Depending on the color, it could also be a sign that you’re dehydrated or that there’s a problem with your liver or bile duct. You should ask your doctor about it.
3. Red or pink
You probably ate beets, or maybe blackberries, or even rhubarb. Red or pink pee after eating beets is common enough that it’s even got its own name: beeturia. Some of the compounds responsible for the color of these pretty foods are excreted in the urine after the kidneys do their processing. It should clear up by the next day, but if red pee lingers, Shaw says, it could be a sign of a bladder or kidney tumor. If you haven’t recently eaten one of these foods, and especially if you notice any blood clots or other pieces of tissue in your pee, please go see a doctor. Both are extremely rare, Shaw adds, but underdiagnosed, especially in women, since we’re more likely to shrug off the incident as a weird period fluke.
No matter what color it is, you should check in with your doctor if it consistently looks foamy and frothy. It may be a sign you have protein in your urine, which may mean you have issues with your kidneys.
5. Green or blue
Surprised? As strange as it may seem, this is caused by an excess of calcium or a type of bacterial infection. This tends to happen in people that take vitamin supplements. It causes an excess or small contamination with other substances, and your body will be affected. Be careful with the medications and vitamin supplements that you take. If you notice any changes, ask your doctor. If you’re not on medications or taking vitamins, go see a doctor.
How often should you pee a day?
Everyone is different, but most people need to empty their bladders up to eight times a day. That can change depending on how much you eat and drink, especially caffeine and alcohol. It could be a side effect of medications, too. Pregnant women and older people usually have to go more often than others.
If you notice you suddenly have to pee more often than usual, though, it could be a sign of a health problem like a UTI, diabetes, enlarged prostatein men, vaginitis in women, or a problem with the wall of your bladder called interstitial cystitis.
If you often feel that you suddenly “gotta go” and sometimes can’t get to the bathroom in time, you may have an overactive bladder. It’s a common condition for older men and women, though it’s not a normal part of aging. Your doctor can tell you how to treat it with lifestyle changes and medications.
When to call your doctor?
Pick up the phone anytime you see a change in your pee that doesn’t seem linked to new medications or a recent meal — especially if the change lasts more than a day or so, or if it comes with a fever, back or side pain, vomiting, feeling very thirsty, or discharge. Your doctor can test your urine to see what’s going on.