Category: Weird Articles
Published on Monday, 24 August 2015 00:00
Written by Cheryl Teo Kai Lin
The Chinese has some weird ways in curing ailments; dried seahorses help with asthma, dehydrated beetles relieves skin problems and many other unique ingredients are used in Chinese medicine. But nothing can be as gross as this. There’s an association in China who believes that urine is a miracle elixir. The members meet up every day for a pee-drinking session.
No, we are not taking the piss out of you, this is actually a thing. The meetings are held at the China Urine Therapy Association office, where members first visit the bathroom to collect their urine. Then they make their way to the roof terrace and toast to each other’s health before chugging down their cup of pee.
The association which was first established in Hong Kong in 2008, isn’t officially recognized by China’s Ministry of Health. But that hasn’t stopped over 1,000 people from joining the association and their practice of drinking urine. The members believe that drinking urine prolongs life, improves health and can even cure cancer! You know urine trouble when some Chinese insist the cure for cancer is pee.
79-year-old Bao Yafu who has been the head of the association since 2010, is the unofficial poster boy for urine therapy. He has been consuming his own pee since 1972, after being introduced to the practice by a family in Hong Kong. They had claimed that urine helped restore the health of their ailing father. Convinced by what he saw, Bao decided to start drinking urine himself.
He admitted that doing it the first time was not easy. “I held the cup for a while then plucked up the courage to drink about 100ml whilst holding my nose,” he told Daily Mail. But to his surprise, he actually didn’t find it revolting after the first sip. “I found that it didn’t taste of much and in fact tasted better than some traditional Chinese medicines. I made it a habit to drink 100ml a day from then, and now I’m on 300ml a day.”
Yes, it is true that some Chinese medicines that consist of herbs and weird insects/animals (typically boiled to make soup) are just downright nasty, but as horribly bitter as it is, I don’t know if I would swap it for urine instead.
Within six months of urine therapy, Bao claims his bald head began to sprout hair. “In these 22 years (of urine therapy), I never caught a cold,” he added. “My eyesight has become clearer and I don’t have any age pigment.”
Doctors around the world unanimously debunk urine therapy as quack medicine. The logic is because the kidneys filter out substances that the body doesn’t need, resulting in you passing it out as urine, and putting them back in the body would seem absurd.
According to nephrology doctor Chen Wenli, “Five per cent of urine is nitrogenous waste, which is mainly urea, while the other 95 per cent is all water. If the person is ill, there will also be sugar, protein, red and white blood cells and ketone bodies in the urine. Because the toxin dispelled by the body may end up in metabolite products like urine, there is no good in drinking it.”
Despite countless advice against the practice of pee-drinking from legitimate doctors, China’s Urine Therapy Association remains adamant in its stand for urine as miracle cure. Members believe that urine is beneficial because it carries valuable nutrients from the blood. “Urine comes from blood. Its chemical components come from blood and equal those of blood. The urine from a healthy person is sterile,” the association’s official literature reads. It adds that urine has both antigens and antibodies which need to be reabsorbed into the body to be able to fight diseases better.
Bao recalled the story of an elderly Shanghai woman whose ribs were broken in an accident. “She asked her daughter to buy her a pot and gauze,” he said. “Then she peed in the pot, soaked the gauze, wrapped it on her ribs then did it again and again for five days. An X-ray was done and the ribs were shown to be healed. The doctor asked what treatment she had received and she said, “I won’t tell you – you make money, but we don’t.”
A 21-year-old member named Xiaoliu told reporters that urine therapy effectively cured him of hyperthyroidism. While medication had no effect on his condition, he decided to place his faith in his own urine. He gradually increased his consumption up to 100 to 150 ml per day. And after a year, medical tests revealed that his thyroid levels had returned to normal.
Xiaoliu’s doctor, on the other hand, was furious about his statement. “He was treated here by me for almost two years, and had been taking medicine for hyperthyroidism and liver protection,” the physician said. “Every month he came back for a medical check and got better so [I] reduced the amount of medicine until he was cured.”
Regardless of scientific proof, urine therapy believers continue to be convinced that it works wonders on their health. And Bao hopes to gain more knowledge of the therapy by conducting experiments. He’s collected jars full of urine for years, wanting to find out the benefits of old urine. What’s more, he also uses urine to wash his eyes, ears and face. “I do this when I wake up,” he said. “I am 80 years old but my vision is perfect. I also use urine to soak my ears.”
Even though it has been refuted by doctors, Bao is actually rather spritely and fit for his age. “I have been drinking urine for 23 years, during which time I’ve not spent a penny on hospital fees. I am used to it now. It’s… tasty!” said Bao, who plans to live until the ripe old age of 120.