UrineUrine is a byproduct of the kidney’s complex filtration system. The kidneys are important organs with many functions in the body including producing hormone, absorbing minerals, filtering blood, and producing urine. Therefore before you flush down valuable health information down the drain, get better acquainted with your urine; and your body’s normal reactions to different foods and medications and when it’s a critical condition that requires medical attention. Continue reading for the top 5 ways urine can reveal important information about your kidneys, as well as your overall health.

  • Dark Color to Your Urine: The color of your urine could determine if you are dehydrated or not. If your urine is dark yellow; and in less quantity than usual; it could be that you are dehydrated. Being dehydrated affects the concentration of wastes in the urine, and it is likely to appear more yellow, darker, and the urine in lesser quantity. Dehydration can cause kidney stones because it allows for stone-causing minerals to concentrate and settle in the kidneys and urinary tract. You want to make sure your urine is clear; and one of the best measures to do that and avoid dehydration and kidney stones is to drink plenty of water. Although this will require you to urinate a lot, it will help in flushing your system and prevent you from dehydration.
  • Plenty of Bubbles in Your Urine: Having a lot of bubbles in your urine may sometimes mean you have protein in your urine; meaning your kidney is not filtering right. Protein in the urine is an early marker for kidney damage, and one of the earliest signs to determine kidney damage. During your annual physical, make sure to ask your health care provider for a urinalysis. Especially if you’re at increased risk of kidney disease. Remember, you’re at increased risk if you have diabetes, high blood pressure, or a family history of kidney failure.
  •  Sweet Smell to Your Urine: If your urine has a sweet smell to it; it may be indicating the presence of sugar. When there is too much sugar in the bloodstream, and the body isn’t processing it effectively; the kidneys begin to work overtime to try and remove it from the body. Sugar in the urine can indicate diabetes or pre-diabetes, so it is important to get additional blood testing for diabetes. Diabetes is the number 1 leading cause of kidney disease and kidney failure. Even pre-diabetes can damage the kidneys, therefore it is important to receive a diagnosis and treatment after such indication.
  •  Cloudy And A Strong Odor To Your Urine: Cloudy or blood tinged urine, a strong odor to the urine, usually accompanied with an urgency to urinate, and a burning feeling when urinating are all symptoms of a urinary tract infection (UTI). A UTI occurs when bacteria (germs) get in the urinary tract and multiply. Bacteria usually enters the urinary tract through the urethra; the tube that carries urine out of the body. If a UTI is not treated promptly, bacteria can move up to the kidneys and can cause a more serious type of infection. Always check your urine for signs of a UTI.
  • Blood in Your Urine: A pink hue to your urine could be as a result of many things ranging from your food intake to critical conditions such as the presence of red blood cells in your urine. Consult with your doctor or health care provider if you notice abnormal changes in your urine output.

Certain foods such as asparagus, beet or foods with beet based dyes; can impact the appearance and scent of your urine, as well as medications and supplements. It is very important to pay attention to whether your urine changes coincide with any dietary changes; and be able to recognize your body’s normal reactions. Urine can offer clues into your health, but it is critical to know when to follow up with your health care provider to obtain the necessary testing and diagnosis.
 With your support, The Iya Foundation, Inc is confident a feasible early detection, surveillance and treatment program can be established to slow, and possibly prevent the progression of kidney disease in the U.S, and particularly in the African Immigrant Community in the U.S.
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