Urine Colour and Hydration

What does the colour of pee tell us?

Published by “Peterborough Today”


Medics are advising people to regularly check the colour of their urine to stay on top of hydration levels after a new report discovered that 7.2 million British adults are going without drinking water on a daily basis. The 50 Shades of Yellow - Hydration Report, compiled by SodaStream to assess the nation’s hydration levels also found that one in seven don’t drink a glass of water on a typical day, even though over half (51 per cent) have an alcoholic drink each day, even though the NHS recommends we drink six to eight glasses of water a day.


Having dark coloured urine isn't something to ignore either as dehydration can cause headaches, dizziness, concentration, tiredness and even kidney problems.

Dr Dawn Harper, a medic who analysed the findings, explains more. “Urine colour may not be the most glamorous topic but it’s imperative we breakdown the taboo and take note of what our body is telling us," she says.

“I suggest we worry less about the international guidelines telling us to count how much water is going in, which range anywhere from 1500ml – 2500ml and don’t take into consideration the large number of variable factors. Instead, take note of what is coming out, using the 50 Shades of Yellow colour chart.”


“There is still a lot of confusion around recommended daily allowances for water," Dr Dawn adds.

"And the amount of fluid your body requires depends on several variable factors including; ambient temperature, exercise levels and other fluid in foods you’ve eaten."

She says, "One clear and simple indicator as to how much you need to drink, is your urine. A quick look in the toilet tells you all you need to know. Your urine should consistently match the shade of 1 to 20 on our pee chart. If it's not, then act.”