What Do Urine Drug Tests Look For?

Urine tests check various components of urine. A test can give information about your drug use, overall health, and other physiological problems you may have.

The kidneys take out wastes, various minerals, liquids, and other substances from blood that pass into urine. Urine carries loads of various body waste. What you consume, how much you exercise, and your kidney function will determine what’s in your urine.

The following are some of the variables urine is tested for:

Color: Lots of things affect the color of urine, including fluid balance, your diet, medicines and drugs, and disease. How dark or light urine is tells how much water is in it. Vitamin B supplements turn urine bright yellow. Some medicines, fruits and vegetables, and blood in urine turn urine red or brown.

Clarity: Urine is normally clear. Bacteria, blood, sperm, crystals, or mucus can make urine look cloudy.

Odor: Urine does not smell very strong, but has a slightly “nutty” odor. Some diseases cause a change in the odor of urine. For example, an infection with E. coli bacteria can cause a bad odor, while diabetes or starvation can cause a sweet, fruity odor.

Specific gravity: This checks the amount of substances in the urine. It also shows how well the kidneys balance the amount of water in urine. The higher the specific gravity, the more solid material is in the urine. When you drink a lot of fluid, your kidneys make urine with a high amount of water in it which has a low specific gravity. When you do not drink fluids, your kidneys make urine with a small amount of water in it which has a high specific gravity.

Nitrites: A normal urine sample will not contain nitrites. Many labs test for this to ensure that the urine sample is not an artificial substitute, such as those made by various companies that manufacture and sell “fake pee.” Substituting urine is not legal and may not work and won’t give you the advantages of truly detoxing from THC.

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