Types and Causes of Urine Colour and Odour as Health Indicator

What is urine to your body?

Mainly containing water and soluble waste compounds, urine is an excretory product of the body’s metabolic processes.

The kidneys in your body are the main organ that filter your blood, extracting all soluble waste content from it, together with water that the body does not need and with that forming urine. From the kidneys, the urine is then dismissed through the urethra.(urinary tract)

Types/categories of urine according to colour.

Categorized as either normal or abnormal, the urine you excrete could be of different colourations; yellow, cloudy,dark coloured or plain clear.

Types and Causes of Urine Colour and Odour as Health   IndicatorDepending on factors such as ; diet choices, the amount of water in your system and beverage consumption, medication and diseases.

Urine colour manifests whatever state of health your body is in.

Healthy urine is straw, light yellow in colour and has a light odour, a slight stench of ammonia.

Causes of the different colours in urine.

Whenever you see dark yellow coloured urine, it is because the ratio of waste substances, usually nitrogenous products, in your urine is more than the water carrying it. In extreme cases, dark yellow urine has an irritating stench due to the chemical composition in it.  Such a strong stench may be a manifestation of infection of the urinary tract.

Medication,another is another cause of yellow coloured urine. Since medications contain a lot of chemical composition in them, it influences heavily the colouration of your urine. Medications such as blood thinners, laxatives and vitamin B and vitamin C supplements have a strong influence on the colour of your urine. Others that are quinine derived also do cause yellow colouration  Combined with the effect diseases have on your body, your urine could turn out darker.

Diseases and health conditions that affect your body, mainly your urinary tract and liver also do cause yellow colouration. Haemolytic anaemia, caused by degradation of red blood cells, causes a dark color in your urine as the body excrete the cells out of your system. Other diseases are diabetes, haemophilia, leukaemia and starvation or excess feeding. With diabetes, the urine could have a sweet smell, indicating high glucose levels in the body.

Dietary choices also determine the color of your urine. High intake of vitamin B, which are highly soluble and complex, and vitamin C do make your urine yellow. Consumption of huge chunks of beef reflects through a dark/reddish color in your urine. Intake of foods such as blackberries, carrots and food colourings cause a significant change in the colour of your urine. Protein in urine indicates kidney diseases. In pregnancy, protein can lead to a dangerous condition called  pre-eclampsia.

Clear urine to the contrast, does not suggest all health.

As it does suggest you are well hydrated, it could also suggest you may be suffering from diabetes insipidus, or you are overly hydrated; water intoxicated.

With the diabetes, one experiences an increase in thirst and urination.

Water being a key component for the facilitation of metabolic processes, lack of it results in you excreting yellow colored urine.

What does your urine colour say about your health?

  • Monitor your urine output and frequency.
  • A frequent output could be a manifestation of bladder infection or urinary tract infection or diabetes.
  • Reduced output could manifest dehydration or kidney disease.

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