What Is a Healthy Urine Color, and What Is Not?

The average adult with healthy kidneys urinates about five times each day. However, what’s normal for one person, may not be for another. The number of times you urinate is influenced by many factors including, how much you drink, what kind of beverages you drink, and how much physical activity you engage in. How often you urinate, and the color of your urine, can reveal a lot about your health.

Urination is directly tied to hydration, or how much water is in your body. Your body is roughly 60% water so having enough water is essential for your body to function properly. Drinking enough water helps regulate your body temperature, assists in delivering oxygen throughout your body, and flushes waste from your body through urination.

The amount of water you drink can affect how frequently you urinate, as well as the color of your urine. You can often tell if you are getting enough water by the color of your pee.

So, just what color should your pee be? We’re answering this question, and others, to share what the color of your urine can reveal about your health.

What Does It Mean When Your Pee Is Clear?

You’re hydrated! A healthy urine color is clear yellow to pale yellow or straw-colored. If you are hydrated, the concentration of your urine (how much of it is made up of water versus waste) is higher in water. If your urine has a higher concentration of water, it will be clear yellow or pale yellow. It is possible to drink too much water, which can cause a disruption in your electrolytes and prevent your body from functioning properly. If your urine is colorless, it may be a sign you are drinking too much water and are over hydrated. You don’t need to strive for clear pee every time you go, anything from pale yellow to clear yellow is considered healthy.

What Does Bright Yellow Pee Mean?

If your pee is bright to dark yellow you may not be getting enough to drink, or you may be taking vitamins or supplements that change the color of your urine. Bright to dark yellow urine can be a sign you are dehydrated (you don’t have enough water in your body) because your urine will have a higher concentration of waste than water. Try drinking more water and see if your urine changes to pale yellow. If your urine remains bright yellow despite the amount of water you’re drinking, the color may be caused by vitamins or supplements you’re taking. Vitamin B12 is naturally fluorescent when exposed to UV light and can cause your pee to appear bright yellow.

What Does Cloudy Urine Mean?

Cloudy or milky urine may be caused by a high concentration of certain minerals—like calcium or phosphate—in your urine. Cloudy urine can also signal a high level of protein in your urine that may be caused by issues with your kidneys. If accompanied by pain while urinating or difficulty urinating, cloudy urine can be caused by a urinary tract infection. If you have persistent cloudy urine or cloudy urine with other symptoms, call your doctor.

What Does Deep Amber Color Urine Mean?

If your urine is a deep brown color, you are likely dehydrated. Dark brown to reddish colored urine can also mean there is blood in your urine which may be caused by a urinary tract infection, injury, or even cancer. If your urine remains a deep amber color and does not lighten after increasing your fluid intake, call your doctor.

Does It Mean If My Urine Is a Weird Color?

Urine color isn’t limited to shades of yellow. If you’re wondering why is my pee green and cloudy?, why is my pee blue?, or why is my pee foamy? you aren’t alone. Many things can change the color of your urine. Eating lots of beets can cause your urine to have a red tint, food dye can cause your urine to have a blue tint, and vegetables like asparagus can cause your urine to have a green tint. If your urine is cloudy, it is likely caused by a higher concentration of minerals versus water. Changing your diet and increasing your water intake should return your urine back to a “normal” shade of yellow that is more clear than cloudy.

When to Call Your Doctor About the Color of Your Urine

If your urine remains a dark brown, red, or any color other than yellow, despite increasing water intake, call your doctor. Your doctor will take a medical history and perform an evaluation to provide you with potential dark urine causes and remedies for treatment.

If you feel like you are urinating too frequently, you should also contact your doctor. Frequent urination can be caused by conditions your doctor can treat, like overactive bladder, interstitial cystitis, and diabetes.



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