Harvard Health Letter

Red, brown, green: Urine colors and what they might mean

Departures from the familiar yellow are often harmless but should be discussed with a doctor.

Most of the time, urine is a pale yellow color because it contains urochrome, one of the substances produced when hemoglobin gets broken down. Hemoglobin is the protein in red blood cells that sticks to oxygen so it can be ferried around the body.

To continue reading this article, you must login.
  • Research health conditions
  • Check your symptoms
  • Prepare for a doctor's visit or test
  • Find the best treatments and procedures for you
  • Explore options for better nutrition and exercise
Learn more about the many benefits and features of joining Harvard Health Online »