Dark urine can be an indicator of dehydration, the body's reaction to certain foods or medicines or the presence of certain diseases or health conditions, explains Healthline. Another cause of brown urine is muscle injury due to exercise, exposure to chemicals or bodily injury.
Urine is typically a clear, light yellow color. A darker yellow or brown color can mean it is heavily concentrated, with the most likely cause being insufficient fluid intake, reports Healthline. However, foods such as fava beans, aloe, rhubarb and food colorings may turn urine brown. Medicines such as anti-malarials, antibacterials, laxatives, iron supplements or levodopa can also cause brown urine. Health conditions or diseases that may be responsible for the color change include urinary tract infections, kidney disorders, liver disorders, urinary tract bleeding or hemolytic anemia.
Drinking more water is advisable as a first step after noticing brown urine, says Healthline. If the color change does not appear to be the result of dehydration, the person should take note of recent intake of any unusual foods or new medicines. Patients should note any accompanying symptoms, such as yellowing of skin and eyes or burning with urination, as these can indicate an underlying health problem. The person should see a doctor, who can perform tests to diagnose or rule out causes of the abnormal color.