Urine is produced by your kidneys to help remove water-soluble wastes from your bloodstream. Although urine is primarily water, it also contains trace amounts of many other substances, including enzymes, hormones, and urea, a byproduct of protein metabolism.
Bacteria, yeast, excess protein and sugar can also find their way into your urine, offering important clues to your health.
In fact, urine symptoms have been used to reveal health problems for centuries, and urinalysis remains an important medical tool today. However, not all urine symptoms need to be detected in a lab.
The appearance and smell of your urine, for instance, can reveal important clues about your health (ideally urine should be the color of straw, or pale yellow). Here are some of the top urine symptoms to watch out for — and what they might be telling you about your health.
Urine Symptoms: 13 Top Clues to Watch Out For
1. Blood in your urine (red urine): If your urine contains blood, it can be a sign of a urinary tract infection or kidney stones, especially if you have related pain. Blood in your urine without pain may be a sign of bladder cancer.
2. Dark brown urine: This can be a sign of liver problems, especially if accompanied by pale stools and yellow skin or eyes. Iced tea-colored urine can also be a sign of dehydration.
3. Bright yellow urine: Very bright urine, almost neon yellow, is often the result of multivitamins you’re taking (particularly B vitamins and carotene) and is not a cause for alarm.
4. Dark yellow or amber urine: If you’re not drinking enough water, your urine can become very concentrated and darker yellow in color. If you notice dark yellow urine, try drinking more water (it will likely become lighter in color). If your urine is very dark or amber in color, it can be a sign of severe dehydration and you should seek medical attention right away.
5. Cloudy urine: Urine is ordinarily clear, but it can become cloudy for a variety of reasons, some harmless, some not. Harmless causes of cloudy urine include excess phosphate crystals (which may build up after a large meal) and normal vaginal secretions in women. Pus from a urinary tract infection or gonorrhea, kidney stones, kidney infections, bladder infections, prostatitis, sexually transmitted diseases and proteinuria (excess protein in the urine, which can be a sign of kidney problems or high blood pressure), can also lead to cloudy urine. These latter cases require medical treatment so if you’re unsure why your urine is cloudy, see a doctor.
6. Unexplained changes in color: This can sometimes be due to the presence of a large number of crystals in your urine, which can indicate underlying health problems. While some crystals are harmless, some can indicate urinary tract infection, dehydration, kidney and bladder stones or other problems. Appearance is not a reliable way to detect crystals in your urine, however. A urine culture is necessary to definitely check for crystals in your urine.
7. Ammonia-like smell: Urinary stones or infection can cause an ammonia-like odor to your urine.
8. Sweet-smelling urine: This is a sign of excess sugar in your urine, which can be a signal of uncontrolled diabetes.
9. Sulfur-like smell: Certain foods cause a sulfur-like smell to your urine as they’re broken down and digested by your body. Asparagus is the most common cause of this smell, which is harmless and will disappear once the food is fully digested.
10. Foul-smelling urine: If your urine has a foul smell, it’s likely due to a bacterial infection.
Other Urine Symptoms
11. Frequent urination: Many conditions can cause frequent urination, the most common of which include:
- Urinary tract infection
- Prostatitis or prostate gland enlargement
- Overactive bladder
- Kidney infection or change in kidney function
- Bladder stones
- Bladder cancer
- Prostate cancer
- Urinary incontinence
12. Dribbling urine: This is often a sign of urinary incontinence, which can include the loss of urine when you cough, sneeze or laugh (stress incontinence) as well as overflow incontinence, which occurs when you cannot completely empty your bladder.
13. Painful urination: If you have pain or burning when you urinate, it is frequently a sign of:
- Urinary tract infection
- Yeast infection
- Sexually transmitted diseases
- Urethritis (infection of the urethra)
- Bladder or kidney infection
- Bladder or kidney stones
Support Your Urinary System by Ridding Your Body of Toxins
Urination is one of the key ways your body eliminates waste from your body, but did you know you can help this process along by regularly detoxing your body? Urination removes water-soluble wastes, but solid wastes depend on your colon for effective elimination. What you may not know is that over time your colon can easily become clogged (and may be harboring five to 20 pounds of hardened fecal matter right now!).
Many ‘mystery’ conditions, like skin problems, low immunity, food cravings, frequent headaches and fatigue, and moodiness, are actually the result of a clogged, toxic colon.
Natural Cleanse is the natural solution to gently flushing impacted fecal matter from your colon, while also replenishing the beneficial bacteria in your gut to support the health of your gastrointestinal tract. You can learn more about the powerful yet soothing detox ingredients found in Natural Cleanse, and learn whether a 30-day or 90-day detox is right for you, now.
Written By: Updated: August 2,2013