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Is urine therapy a practice recommended by physicians?

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Quick Answer

In general, urine therapy is not recommended by physicians, reports MedicineNet. Urine therapy is unlikely to cause serious health problems in healthy individuals, but there is no evidence to support any supposed health benefits, as of 2015.

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Full Answer

Urine therapy can take several forms, according to The Independent. Many people drink their own urine, while others bathe in it or use it as a topical dressing. Some people place a few drops under their tongues and absorb it that way. Advocates claim that there are many supposed health benefits, from reducing allergies to rejuvenating the skin for a more youthful look. More extreme adherents even claim that urine therapy can cure serious diseases, including HIV/AIDS and cancer.

Urine is a generally harmless substance, as claimed by MedicineNet. It consists primarily of water, with some concentrated nutrients added. However, there is nothing special about these nutrients or the water, which makes it unlikely that urine therapy has any real health benefits.

Some people in extreme survival situations have claimed that they survived by drinking urine, reports The Independent. However, it is possible for this strategy to cause more damage. Although urine could stave off dehydration in early stages, it gradually gets more concentrated. As this occurs, the higher levels of sodium can actually dehydrate the body faster then drinking nothing at all.

Urine from people with certain diseases, such as Hepatitis B, or who have consumed toxic substances, such as lead or arsenic, is particularly dangerous because it can spread these conditions to the person drinking the urine, reports Columbia Health.

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