Elimination – Urine (pt 4)
Want more elimination? Of course, you don’t. But here we go again. It’s silly to be uber concerned with what goes in our bodies and entirely ignore what happens on the other end. That would be like buying a bunch of plastic crap from China and when you’re done with it, after about 2 weeks when it breaks, it gets thrown in the trash. Where does it go then? It’s all too easy to close our eyes to the “big” picture and only concern our self with consuming. This myopic thinking relates to EVERYthing. So, why shouldn’t be be just as interested in the results of our “out” as with our “in”.
What about Yin/yang, plus/minus, reap what you sow, etc. Granted, many folks do not give a hoot about what they eat or drink. I’m not judging unless I am. If takes effort not to buy into the “consume” economy. Just because they took the word “Sugar” off “Sugar Frosted Flakes” doesn’t mean it doesn’t have sugar. It takes a lot of conscious effort to counteract the barrage of malicious advertising, especially to kids. Companies spend copious amount of money on testing, reformulating, testing, tweeking, and more testing in order to come up with the advertisement that “makes us hungry/thirsty”. The gaming industry does this too. Using algorithms and metrics they develop their games to be addictive, in other words, eliciting the most screen time.
Yet, I digress. Where was I? The last 3 weeks I shared a welcomed or unwelcomed article on paying attention to what comes out far end of the alimentary canal or, in other words, poop. Also important is urine or pee. The quantity, color, odor and ease of exiting are worth paying some attention. Urine is often used as a diagnostic tool for many diseases.
Output. You pee out between 400 – 2,000 mL of urine with a normal fluid intake of about 2 liters per day or about 8 cups. The amount varies depending on water intake, sweating, and caffeine and alcohol intake. Most people urinate 6 to 8 times a day, but if you’re one of those with a fancy Hydroflask bottle at your desk, it’s not abnormal to go as many as 10 times per day. Certain medications can cause more peeing, like diuretics for high blood pressure.
Observe the color. That’s right, take a look behind (or under) you. Hopefully you don’t have those inserts from the 1970s that make your toilet water blue. A dark color (apple juice shade or even darker) is an indication of dehydration. If it’s on the brown side, go directly to the closest water source and drink down some water already. The color of light beer is good. (No, you don’t have to actually go out and drink more beer.) Red or red-ish colored urine (unless it’s from menstruation or eating beets) is not good and you should see a doctor, fairly pronto. Same goes for urine that is orange or even green. There’s a good chance something serious is going on. I’m sure you’ve noticed, but vitamins give urine a bright, almost florescent color.
Give a sniff. Urine has an odor, but should be indistinct, unless you’ve had the wonderful delicious green stalks of asparagus that are now in season. Although urine is mainly water, it’s the concentration of waste products excreted by the kidneys that causes the odor. A high level of waste products can give urine a strong ammonia odor. Unusual odor can indicate a medical condition like a bladder infection, cystitis, dehydration, high level of ketones and uncontrolled Type 2 diabetes (plus more).
Ease of peeing. Although the healthy adult bladder can hold up to 2 cups of urine, you probably should go before it gets that full. The brain gets a signal to be thinking about a trip to the bathroom when your bladder is about half full. This varies, of course. The urine should exit without strain or pain and you should “void” completely. Pain or stinging with urination can be the result a urinary tract infection (UTI), kidney stones, an obstruction or bladder infection, among many other reasons. Any persistent pain should necessitate a phone call to your health care practitioner.
This is only a drop in the bucket of information to be had on urine. I’m considering “one more” article on elimination, just when you thought it was over. What about body odor? It’s a type of bodily elimination and I think it might be fun, informative and mildly entertaining. Stay tuned.
As always, I appreciate any feedback, questions, or topic suggestions. Really, you’re not bothering me.