||This article needs more medical references for verification or relies too heavily on primary sources. (May 2013)|
Urophagia is the consumption of urine, which is the liquid by-product of blood filtration in the body. There are various reasons that humans may consume urine. Urine was used in several ancient cultures for various health, healing, and cosmetic purposes, practices which are still used by some people of these cultures today. Urine therapy is a form of alternative medicine. Thai people had been practicing Urophagia for a long time.
Other reasons for urophagia include attempting survival, if no other potable fluid is available, though numerous credible sources (including the US Army Field Manual) advise against it. Also, some people consume urine as a sexual activity, and members of at least one culture consume urine for ceremonial purposes.
Reasons for urophagia
Some survival instructors and guides, including the US Army Field Manual FM 21-76 "Survival", advise against drinking urine for survival. These guides state that drinking urine tends to worsen, rather than relieve dehydration due to the salts in it and that urine should not be consumed in a survival situation, even when there is no other fluid available. However, none gives data or sources to back up these statements. Basic physiology suggests that the urine produced in the first hours or day after being cut off from fluid supplies may be a useful source of fluid. Under conditions of dehydration, the kidneys need only 0.5 L of water per 24 h to excrete the 'waste' i.e. the salts and organic material that needs to be removed from the blood. Under normal conditions a healthy adult will produce some 2 L of urine, of which 1.5 L can be considered 'free water' while the other 0.5 L is needed to remove waste. Thus theoretically, drinking one of L normal human urine is equivalent to drinking 0.75 L of water. As dehydration proceeds, urine will become more concentrated and approach the limit of 0.5 L/24h where it is no longer useful as a 'beverage.'
Urophagia in Islam
Although the Urophagia has a long background in Arabic culture, drinking the urine of the camel was once recommended by the Mohammed, the prophet of Islam. In Sahih al-Bukhari is mentioned a Hadith in which it says that some people came to Madeenah and fell sick. Mohammed told them to drink the milk and urine of camels, and they recovered and grew fat. Also, Dogs urine could've been used.
Urophagia in Sport
Many famous sports personalities have admitted to taking part in Urophagia. Mexican boxer Juan Manuel Márquez confessed to drinking his own urine while training for his next fight and claims that the urine has vitamins and minerals have helped him.
[Lyoto Machida], a well-known Brazillian mixed martial arts fighter also admitted to drinking urine after gaining advice from his father to cure a cough. Yoshizo Machida claims that urine has medicinal properties and by ingesting it, you can flush out your system, assist with food digestion as well as prevent the build-up of harmful bacteria.
- Tracker Trail – Mother Earth News – Issue #72
- EQUIPPED TO SURVIVE (tm) – A Survival Primer
- Water Procurement, US Army Field Manual
- Ganong’s Review of Medical Physiology Twenty-Third Edition 2010, Table 38-7
- Aron Ralston | Outside Online
- Muhammad al-Bukhari. "(152)Chapter: If a Mushrik burns a Muslim, should he be burnt (in retaliation)?". Sunnah.com. p. 3018. Retrieved 28 December 2015.
- Urine Drinkers Guide - Plumbworld Blog
- A Brief History of Athletes Drinking their Own Urine - Guardian