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The Urine Wheel

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Image of the Week #65, October 24th, 2012:


From: The Urine Wheel by Christina Agapakis at Oscillator.

Source: Epiphanie Medicorum by Ullrich Pinder in 1506

What did doctors in the 16th century know about health and metabolism? If you’re tempted to smirk and say not much, perhaps you should think again. Since the Ancient Greeks, it has been known that the products of our metabolism can be evaluated through the contents of our excrement. This Urine Wheel from Epiphanie Medicorum by Ullrich Pinder was published in 1506. It details the array of smells, colors, and tastes (yes, tastes!) of urine that are indicative of various diseases and conditions. So while you may dismiss your excrement each morning with a flippant flush, know that if you were so inclined, you could glean more than a little knowledge about your overall health by instead sampling a tad. Thankfully, with modern technology, tasting it is no longer necessary!



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  1. 1. Daniel35 7:23 pm 10/26/2012

    And not just one sample, but over a long period of varying medical conditions so you can see patterns and relationships of various conditions.

    In an Army Med Lab Tech class a teacher told us about earlier researchers tasting urine. When someone doubted it, he said if he could prove it, he’d bet everyone of us had.

    Link to this

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