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    The Truth About Urine

    What Color Is Your Pee? continued...

    Blue or green: These hues are probably due to dyes in your food or meds you’ve taken, like the anesthetic propofol or the allergy/asthma medicine promethazine. A few rare medical conditions can also turn pee green or blue, so let your doctor know if the color doesn’t go away after a short time.

    Foamy: No matter what color it is, you should check in with your doctor if it consistently looks foamy and frothy. It may be a sign you have protein in your urine, which may mean you have issues with your kidneys.

    How Does It Smell?

    Pee doesn’t usually have a strong smell. But some foods -- especially asparagus, which has a smelly sulfur compound -- can change the odor. So can vitamin B-6 supplements. When you’re dehydrated and your pee gets very concentrated, it can smell strongly of ammonia.

    If you catch a whiff of something really strong before you flush, it might also be a sign of a UTI, diabetes, a bladder infection, or metabolic diseases.

    How Often Should You Go?

    Everyone is different, but most people need to empty their bladders up to eight times a day. That can change depending on how much you eat and drink, especially caffeine and alcohol. It could be a side effect of medications, too. Pregnant women and older people usually have to go more often than others.

    If you notice you suddenly have to pee more often than usual, though, it could be a sign of a health problem like a UTI, diabetes, an enlarged prostate in men, vaginitis in women, or a problem with the wall of your bladder called interstitial cystitis.

    If you often feel that you suddenly “gotta go” and sometimes can’t get to the bathroom in time, you may have overactive bladder. It’s a common condition for older men and women, though it’s not a normal part of aging. Your doctor can tell you how to treat it with lifestyle changes and medications.

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