In a previous article here, we informed you about the range of functions kidneys perform to maintain “Homeostasis” — a constant internal environment in our bodies. It is now the clear logical next step for us to discuss that smelly, yellow liquid waste that is the “by-product” of all this work. I’m talking about URINE.
WHAT IS URINE?
Urine is basically a “filtrate” of your blood that begins to form once blood loaded with toxic end-products of cellular metabolism from across the body reaches the kidney via sophisticated tissue-filtration systems.
In other words, it is the collective output of a major segment of metabolic waste products from our body, especially the compounds that contain a toxic element called Nitrogen. For example: Urea (from the Liver), Creatinine (from Muscles) & Uric Acid (from purine digestion in food).
Once formed, your urine is transferred via tubes called Ureters (one from each kidney) to a common, beetroot-shaped, muscular tissue bag downstream, called the Urinary Bladder. Here, it is stored up until we decide to take that Toilet Break!
The daily urinary output should normally range between 1.2-2.0 Litres/day. This output volume will vary with your daily water intake, daily activity levels & local climate.
Urine is the classic underdog easily disregarded in our daily lives. However, given the precision with which our uber-efficient nephrons balance each ingredient that constitutes urine, it is nothing short of being a sophisticated “Biochemical Masterpiece”!
Now wouldn’t it be nice if you could learn to analyze your own Urine Test (urinalysis) Reports rather than waiting for your medical appointment in anxiety?
In that case, you must understand what comprises your Urine in good health.
If you know what’s normal, your eyes will certainly be better trained to fish-out the abnormal. Your Urine would literally “speak” to you about how well, organs of your Urinary system (Kidneys, Ureter, Bladder, and Urethra) are doing. And being vigilant & well-informed about your health is the best way to keep yourself fit and even seek timely medical care should the need arise!
This is certainly not a brash attempt to demean medical advice, but on the contrary, an attempt to instil the importance of staying informed, in patients.
Not-so-secret Confession: We like it when patients choose to stay informed and come up with relevant questions. Makes our day worthwhile!
So here goes…..
AVERAGE DAILY URINE COMPOSITION IN GOOD HEALTH
- 95% of the total output volume
- Urea – 23.4 g/day (Responsible for the mild urinary Odour)
- Uric Acid – 0.3 – 2.0 g/day
- Creatine – 0.05 – 0.10 g/day
- Creatinine – 1.8 g/day (1800 mg/day)
- Hippurate – 0.15 g/day
MINERALS & MINERAL SALTS:
- Sodium – 100-150 mEq/day
- Potassium – 92 mEq/day
- Chloride – 120-240 mEq/day
- Bicarbonate – 2.0 mEq/day
- Calcium – 10-20 mEq/day
- Magnesium – 6-12 mEq/day
- Ammonium – 30-50 mEq/day
- Bi-phosphate – 20-80 mEq/day
- Sulphate – 60-120 mEq/day
- Urochrome (Gives the characteristic yellowish tinge)
Healthy Urine samples DO NOT contain the following components:
- Plasma Proteins (Albumin)
- Blood (RBC, WBC)
- Ketone Bodies
- Other microbes
Please remember, the presence of ANY of these components would require you to seek your doctor’s advice.
So you see what that humble-looking pee of yours is actually normally composed of?
Now that you know this, keep a tab of “The Urine Series” for more knowledge bytes on your humble urine to learn how your liquid waste can help you with early diagnosis & seek timely medical care.
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