What The Color of Your Urine Says About Your Health

Your urine can tell you a lot about your health and habits. Urine is produced when blood enters the kidneys, where it filters out excess waste and water. This waste passes through a tube called the urethra and is stored in the bladder until urine is released.

About 95 percent of urine is water, and the rest consists of thousands of organic and inorganic compounds that are excreted from the body.

Abnormal levels of proteins, sugars, ketones, and other chemicals can help your healthcare provider diagnose and monitor various diseases.

What does the color and smell of my urine tell me?
Changes in the smell or color of your urine are usually harmless, but sometimes they can indicate a medical problem. Normal, healthy urine usually has a mild odor and is slightly yellow in color. (1)

Urine can smell for a variety of reasons.

40 percent of people smell changes in their urine after eating asparagus, sometimes called “asparagus urine.” (2)
Dehydration causes an ammonia smell. (3)
Fruit-smelling urine can be a sign of type 2 diabetes. (4)
Foul-smelling urine indicates bacterial infection. (4)
Also, the color of urine can be different for various reasons: (5,6)

Clear urine is a sign of good hydration and extreme dehydration.
Pale yellow urine is an indicator of good hydration.
Dark yellow urine is a sign of drinking more fluids.
Amber-colored urine indicates dehydration.
Orange-colored urine can be caused by various foods and medications, or it can be a symptom of liver disease.
Pink or red urine can be caused by food or medication, or it can be a sign of blood in the urine.
Blue or green urine can be caused by medications or food dyes, but it can also be a symptom of bacteria or a rare condition called blue diaper syndrome.

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