Foul Smelling Urine
Important Facts about Foul Smelling Urine
Making a trip to the bathroom is a natural and frequent occurrence for most people; what may not be natural is noticing that suddenly you have foul smelling urine.
Urinating is the body’s method of ridding itself of waste that is in a fluid form. As our bodies process the foods we eat and the liquids we drink, it produces certain chemicals that are required to break these items down for distribution to the different systems that utilize them. The chemicals are then collected by and travel through the blood stream along with nutrients as they complete their functions; ending up in the urinary system where first, the kidneys filter them from the blood. The waste fluid seeps down into the ureters and then into the bladder where it is held until the need for urination arrives.
Properties of urine
Everybody manufactures urine as part of this urinary process. Approximately 95% of urine is composed of simple water, with the remaining 5% consisting of waste products including salt. If each person were to drink the recommended amount of 8 eight ounce glasses of water each day, this vital hydration helps to provide ample fluid to sweep through the system as the other waste and chemicals are collected. For these people, urine is generally produced frequently and will be pale yellow in color. Only a mild odor might be present in the majority of cases. People who do not ensure they have an adequate fluid intake throughout the day will likely notice their urine to be a darker yellow color, which is a more concentrated mixture of water and waste products. A stronger odor will be present, as well. When an individual becomes dehydrated, their urine can become the color of iced tea, indicating that it has become very concentrated. It will also generally exhibit a very strong, pungent odor.
What urine odor is telling us:
It is through the amount of and concentration of these various chemicals that odors develop. If you have foul smelling urine, it can mean several things. To narrow down what may be causing the odor, consider the following:
- The amount of fluid you are taking in, as too little can produce stronger smelling urine that is similar to ammonia. Usually, increasing the amount of plain water you drink will serve to dilute the urine, decreasing the smell.
- The medications or herbs you may be taking, as certain drugs will affect both the appearance and the smell of urine. As long as the drugs continue to be taken, the urine odor will persist.
- Foods you have eaten. Many foods attribute to the color and scent of urine, such as asparagus. These foods contain a sulfur-like amino acid which is released when the food is broken down in the digestive tract. The acid filters through the kidneys and is excreted along the urine, creating a more distinct odor. When the food passes completely through the system, the odor disappears.
- Medical disorders can also contribute to the smell of urine. Diabetes, kidney infection, bladder infection, acute liver failure, urinary tract infection, cystitis and metabolic disorders will all have an effect on urine, sometimes creating foul smelling urine that should alert the individual that a problem exists.
For the majority of people, simply drinking more pure fresh water every day will help our bodies to flush chemicals and waste from our bodies, which will result in urine that is light in color and odor. If the smell does not go away, it may be time to schedule an appointment with your doctor to investigate a possible medical problem.