Choluria is early sign of liver disease that crops up in your pee

Alcohol-related liver disease, or ARLD for short, is triggered by consuming large amounts of the popular yet unhealthy drink – alcohol. Although the first stages of liver disease don’t usually show many warning signs, one “early” symptom can strike when you go to the loo.

While you might not pay too much attention to the colour of your pee, a certain tint could suggest problems with your liver.

In fact, choluria is considered one of the earliest signs of liver damage that can show up before other symptoms, according to MedLine Plus.

This “early sign” is characterised by a dark brownish colour, resembling cola.

The reason why your pee turns dark is bilirubin – a yellow substance produced during the normal process of breaking down red blood cells.

READ MORE: Acholic stools are ‘the most common’ sign of pancreatic cancer in ‘initial’ stages

MedLine Plus states: “Your liver uses bilirubin to make bile, a fluid that helps you digest food. A healthy liver removes most of the bilirubin from your body. 

“But if there is a problem with your liver, bilirubin can build up in your blood and get into your urine.”

According to Science Direct, choluria often crops ups with other warning signs, pointing to liver damage, including light-coloured stools and jaundice.

Jaundice details the white of your eyes and skin turning yellow, according to the NHS.


The health service warns that ARLD might not show any red flags until your liver has become severely damaged.

How does alcohol cause ARLD?

While your liver is able to filter toxins, some of the organ’s cells die each time you drink alcohol.

The good news is that the organ is able to develop new ones and regenerate itself.

However, having too much of the popular drink can lower this ability, leading to liver damage.

That’s why the most reliable way to prevent ARLD is quitting drinking. But sticking to the recommended limits of not regularly drinking more than 14 units a week can also help.

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