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Drinking own urine!

According to an article at, the pro boxer Juan Manuel Marquez surprised (no doubt some were shocked) a lot of people recently when he announced prior to his bout with Mayweather that part of his pre-fight regimen involves drinking his own urine. Unknown to many, Marquez was echoing an ancient practice of urine therapy. But is it safe to drink one's own urine?

Drinking Urine Has Ancient Roots
The drinking of urine has been a cultural practice as well as a form of medicinal treatment in China, Egypt, the Aztec empire, and India for thousands of years, writes Diane Stressing in an article entitled "True or False:It's Safe to Drink Your Urine," published at

Drinking one's own urine and that of others has been touted as a sort of natural elixir for all kinds of ailments. In fact, one well known 20th century leader of India, former prime minister Morarji Desai, is said to have drunk a pint of his own urine every day and he lived to be 99 years of age, according to a report at

Given this history, it would seem that Marquez's announcement is not so shocking after all. Nevertheless, many continue to question the safety of urine therapy.

Arguments in Favor of Drinking One's Own Pee
Stressing sets forth in her article some of the main arguments in favor or urine therapy. She says that some of the reason given most often for gulping down a glass of urine are:
•It is better to drink your urine than suffer the consequences of dehydration when no other liquid is available for drinking.
•Urine is 95% water which has been filtered through the body.
•Urine is an ancient practice which invests this form of therapy with historical verification.
•There are some scientific studies which indicate that urea, which next to water is the largest component of urine, has some antiviral, antibacterial, and antifungal qualities.
•Drinking urine in small amounts has not been shown to cause any medical problems.

Arguments Against Drinking Urine
In the same article, Stressing gives some compelling reasons for not drinking urine:
•There is no medical evidence which supports the claims that drinking urine has medicinal purposes.
•Drinking urine is unnatural since urine is a waste product which the natural processes of the body has discharged and it goes against the workings of nature to reintroduce this waste into the body.
•If one is religious and believes in a creator who designed the human body, then it is idolatrous to ingest a substance which the creator has determined should be discharged from the body.
•Urine can contain harmful substances from the environment and from drugs and other substances ingested into the body.
•The Chinese Association of Urine Therapy has cautioned that drinking urine in excessive amounts can cause diarrhea, fever, muscle soreness, and fatigue which increase in severity as the amount of urine taken into the body increases.

It appears then that drinking urine in small amounts is safe. But why would anyone want to drink urine? Given the beating to which Marquez was subjected at the hands of Mayweather, his urine therapy appears not to have aided his boxing skills and instead catapulted him to the unexpected status as a poster person for reasons why people should not drink their urine or anyone else's.

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