British man makes wild claims about drinking urine helping his depression, appearance

Photos of Harry Matadeen meditating from his Instagram
The man also drinks his aged urine for the purported 'benefits'. Photo credit: Harry Matadeen / Instagram

Warning: This article contains content that some readers may find distressing.

The beauty industry is responsible for many a lotion, potion and elixir touting all kinds of brazen to downright mind-boggling claims, from 'skinny teas' to 'mood-boosting beverages' and gut-balancing tonics.

But amid the madness, one man is wetting his whistle with a concoction of his own, a fluid he believes has improved his health, happiness and even his appearance - despite there being no scientific evidence to support his bold claims.

Harry Matadeen, a 34-year-old from the English county of Hampshire, began consuming his own urine in 2016 in a desperate bid "to heal" his battle with mental illness.

"It was beyond my wildest imaginations how powerful it was when I drank it," Matadeen says, as reported by Express.

"From the moment I drank the urine, it woke up my brain and removed my depression."

To experience "peace and calm", Matadeen says he drinks his urine as a daily ritual, a practice he claims is "never as bad as you imagine".

While fresh urine has a neutral smell and flavour, aged urine has a more "acquired" taste, Matadeen says. However, he will drink his aged urine to ensure he is maintaining the alleged benefits he associates with the ammonia aperitif. 

"The aged urine is always smelly. I'll just say it takes some getting used to."

But drinking from the golden fountain isn't to everyone's taste - including his family, who thought the practice was "disgusting from the beginning", Matadeen says. He is now estranged from his sister and refuses to associate with people who do not approve of 'urine therapy'.

"I've chosen all of my friends now and all of them either do aged fresh urine therapy or approve of it," he said. "If they didn't I wouldn't have them as friends - simple as that."

The 34-year-old also says he uses the bodily fluid as a beauty treatment, rubbing the liquid into his skin as a form of skincare that he claims has taken years off his appearance. 

Matadeen isn't the only pee devotee. Urine therapy, or urotherapy, is fairly popular among those who practice alternative medicine. It promotes the application of human urine for medicinal or cosmetic purposes, including drinking one's own urine and massaging it into the skin or gums. 

British man makes wild claims about drinking urine helping his depression, appearance
Photo credit: Harry Matadeen / Instagram

According to a report published by University College London researchers in The Pan African Medical Journal in 2010, drinking or local application of human or animal urine for medicinal purposes has been practised all over the world for millennia.

Documented prescriptions in Europe originate from ancient Egypt, Greece and Rome, with the use of urine and other excrements also proving popular in mediaeval times. Ancient Indian yogic texts and ancient Chinese documents also describe the benefits of drinking one's own urine, which researchers assume was also widely practised in Africa, the Americas and other parts of the world.

"Modern proponents use pseudoscience to explain the benefits of the various, mostly exaggerated, components of urine. Some hint at a conspiracy by the medical establishment and the pharmaceutical industry to keep the knowledge of the many fantastic healing properties of cheaply available urine a secret," said the researchers, as per the report.

Urine is mostly water, urea and uric acid, with creatinine, various electrolytes, phosphate and organic acids. It also contains trace amounts of proteins, varying traces of hormones, glucose and water-soluble vitamins. Urine is sterile where it is produced in the kidney, but once it has left the body, it is usually contaminated.

"It is not toxic per se. There may be rare situations where urine is the cleanest liquid at hand to pour over a dirty wound, or the only liquid to drink when buried under a collapsed building or lost at sea for days, but most of the time there are better or tastier ways to improve one's health."

And modern science overwhelmingly disagrees with the purported benefits, with WedMD - one the world's leading healthcare websites - warning that urine is not safe or healthy to consume

"When it comes to hydration, water, electrolyte beverages and most other drinks are likely safer to consume than urine. There are no health benefits to ingesting urine; any other drink is likely to involve fewer health risks.

"While in small amounts urine is unlikely to cause harm, it will not offer benefits, either."