7 foods and drinks that can cause cloudy urine


Cloudy urine refers to piss that is cloudy and no longer transparent. It can result from many underlying causes, including certain foods and drinks.

Some causes of cloudy urine are harmless, while others may require medical attention.

Here are 7 foods and drinks that can cause cloudy urine.

Some people may get cloudy urine after eating large amounts of foods high in phosphorus and purines, such as milk and dairy products (1).

Phosphorus is a mineral that is necessary for optimal bone health and many body functions (2).

When you consume a lot of phosphorus, your body can release it in your urine and cause cloudy pee. However, this is unusual in generally healthy people.

Dairy products are particularly rich in bone-building calcium. For most people, eating milk and dairy products in moderation is not a problem. In fact, they can be a nutritious addition to your diet (3).

More often, urine rich in phosphorus can be a sign of kidney disease, high levels of vitamin D, or thyroid disease caused by too much parathyroid hormone in the body (4th, 5).

These conditions require medical attention.


If you consume too much milk or dairy products, your urine can temporarily be cloudy as your body excretes excess phosphorus. More often, however, urine rich in phosphorus is the result of an underlying disease.

Meat, including poultry and beef, is also high in phosphorus.

As with dairy products, eating too much meat can cause your body to excrete excess phosphorus in your urine. As a result, your piss can go from transparent to opaque (1).

However, cloudy peeing as a result of a diet high in phosphorus is uncommon.

It’s more likely that too much of certain meats is contributing to other causes of cloudy urine.

Highly processed or cured meat such as bacon, sausage, salami and pepperoni can be high in salt.

Consuming too much salt can increase thirst and contribute to dehydration, which in turn can make your urine darker, more concentrated, and cloudy (6th).

To get the benefits of meat without unwanted side effects, including cloudy urine, eat meat in moderation and, in particular, limit varieties that are high in salt.


Too much meat can increase the amount of phosphorus excreted in the urine and lead to cloudy urine. Processed and cured meats are also high in salt, which can contribute to dehydration and make urine cloudy.

Some types of seafood, particularly anchovies, shellfish, and sardines, are high in purines, a group of compounds that the body converts into uric acid.

When some people eat a lot of purine-rich foods, it can lead to high levels of uric acid in the urine. This is also known as hyperuricosuria. As a result, the urine may appear cloudy (7th, 8th).

However, seafood offers a ton of health benefits. It’s high in lean protein, multiple minerals, and omega-3 fatty acids that help fight inflammation and promote heart health (9).

For most people, the benefits of eating seafood outweigh the possible disadvantages. If you are concerned about your purine intake or if a doctor has advised you to limit purines, opt for lower-purine seafood such as salmon, flounder, and halibut.

Other high purine foods that need limiting include red meats, meat sauces, organ meats, alcohol, and foods that contain high fructose corn syrup.

In addition to a diet high in purine, certain medical conditions can lead to excess uric acid in the urine. These conditions include gout, insulin resistance, and certain genetic conditions (8th).


Certain types of seafood are high in purines, which break down into uric acid in your body and can cause cloudy urine in some people.

Cloudy urine can also result from high sugar intake.

In particular, high fructose intake is associated with hyperuricosuria. Your body’s fructose metabolism promotes the production of uric acid (1, 10, 1112).

Hence, eating a lot of fructose can lead to excess uric acid in your piss, resulting in cloudy urine.

Fructose occurs naturally in fruits, honey, and molasses. It’s also the main ingredient in high fructose corn syrup used in sodas and sugary beverages, candy and packaged desserts, salad dressings and condiments, certain granola bars, and some breads and crackers.

If you consume a lot of fructose, your urine may be cloudy, but not everyone will get this effect. People with type 2 diabetes, obesity, or metabolic syndrome are more likely to have hyperuricosuria (13th).

In addition to their potential effect on urine cloudiness, foods and beverages high in fructose are often of low nutritional value. It is best to limit these items to a balanced diet.


High fructose intake from sugary foods and beverages can lead to high uric acid levels in the urine and cloudiness.

Salty foods like french fries, canned soups, charcuterie and sausage, and salted popcorn can be behind your cloudy piss.

Eating too much salt can affect your body’s fluid balance and cause your kidneys to cling to the water.

If you eat a lot of salt and don’t drink enough water, you can become dehydrated. This can lead to dark, cloudy urine and fewer trips to the toilet (6th).

In addition, many foods high in salt contain other unhealthy ingredients and do not provide many beneficial nutrients.

Most experts recommend keeping your salt intake at around 2,300 mg per day, or the equivalent of 1 teaspoon (6 grams) of salt, plus consuming plenty of water to stay hydrated (14th).


Consuming excess salt can cause your body to cling to the water and contribute to dehydration. This can lead to concentrated, cloudy urine.

Having the occasional alcoholic drink usually doesn’t cause problems, but too much alcohol can make your urine cloudy.

Alcohol is considered a diuretic, which means your kidneys release more water by suppressing the hormone that normally stops urination (fifteen).

As a result, alcohol consumption can lead to dehydration. After a night of drinking, you may find that your urine is darker and cloudy than usual.

Remember to drink water in addition to alcoholic beverages to prevent alcohol from drying out cloudy urine.

Excessive alcohol consumption can also increase your risk of heart disease, liver disease, some cancers, and various other health problems. Experts recommend limiting alcohol consumption to one drink a day for women and two drinks a day for men (16).


Too much alcohol can cause dehydration, which can lead to cloudy urine. Remember to consume alcohol in moderation and drink water with it to avoid dehydration.

Coffee and tea are two possible culprits behind cloudy urine.

Coffee and some teas like green, black, and oolong contain caffeine. When you consume caffeine, it causes multiple diuretic effects on the kidneys and increases urine output (17th).

Drinking a lot of caffeinated beverages can cause dehydration, cloudy urine, or changes in color.

However, plain coffee, as well as green and black tea, also offer health benefits. They are loaded with compounds that act as antioxidants and help prevent cell damage related to disease development (19th).

Still, it’s important to drink these drinks in moderation to avoid dehydration. Be sure to drink plenty of water after drinking coffee or tea that contains caffeine.


Coffee and tea that contain caffeine can have diuretic effects, causing dehydration and cloudy urine. Although they contain beneficial compounds, it is best to drink them in moderation with plenty of water.

Cloudy urine can be harmless, but it can also be a sign of illness or a serious cause.

Some conditions associated with cloudy urine include urinary tract infections, kidney stones, prostate problems, and sexually transmitted infections.

See a doctor if your cloudy urine does not go away or is accompanied by a foul odor, blood, pain, vomiting, or discharge. These could indicate an infection or some other problem.


Cloudy urine is often harmless, but this is not always the case. If you have symptoms other than cloudy urine, or if they don’t go away, see a doctor.

Some foods and drinks can contribute to cloudy urine.

These include foods high in phosphorus, purines, refined sugars and salt, and alcohol and caffeine.

However, sometimes cloudy urine is a sign of something more serious. Consult a doctor if symptoms other than cloudy urine occur.

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