Want to know if you are hydrated? Learn to read the shades of your urine

You will probably notice that the color changes on a daily, often hourly basis

Since hydration supports loads of bodily functions even mental cognition, it is necessary to have an optimal level of hydration in the body at all times.
A simple way of checking or monitoring your hydration level is by paying attention to the color of your urine. And the good news is you do not have to get your hands dirty urinating in a cup. You can assess the color simply by peeking into the toilet bowl after you urinate. "Do not worry if the color gets a little diluted by the toilet water. It's still a perfectly useful gauge," observes N Khound a doctor of medicine from Guwahati.
"You will probably notice that the color changes on a daily, often hourly, basis. In order to understand what's healthy and what should be addressed I am sharing a few things," states Dr Khound and adds, "Well while it is important to drink enough water every day, it's also totally possible to overdo it. If your urine is totally transparent and missing a yellow hue, you are probably drinking more than the recommended amount of water."
The reason you want to avoid over hydrating is because an excess of water dilutes your body's electrolyte content
Dr Khound states in a light vein that if urinating has become your full-time job that is simply another sign that you are hydrating a bit too hard. For the average adult, urinating four to ten times in a 24 hour period is considered normal. "The reason you want to avoid over hydrating is because an excess of water dilutes your body's electrolyte content. While rare, this can lead to water intoxication," reveals Dr Khound.
Representative image of a man drinking water which is the major source of hydration
Image: Representative image of a man drinking water which is the major source of hydration
However, the vast majority of us do not have to worry about that level of overhydration. "Generally speaking, when you are overhydrated, limit yourself to small sips of water until your urine regains a yellow tint," advises Dr Khound. Urine colours ranging from lemonade to a brighter shade like light beer means you are solidly hydrated.
Drinking water is the most obvious way to stay hydrated. But did you know eating fruits and vegetables is also a great source of water? "Tomatoes, cucumbers, strawberries, cabbage, lettuce and melons are a few good sources," advises Dr Khound.



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