What’s the latest so-called Covid-19 antidote being pushed by an anti-vaxxer? Well, urine for a surprise.
Yes, Christopher Key, who maintains the “Vaccine Police” anti-vaxx website, is apparently now touting urine therapy. In this case, urine therapy is not sitting down with a jug of your urine and talking about its feelings. Instead, it’s drinking your own urine, because why not, right? After all, what won’t anti-vaxxers and others pushing different so-called alternative therapies try to convince you to do instead of getting Covid-19 vaccines?
In a video posted on his Telegram account, Keys suggested putting into your mouth what normally goes into the toilet. Just take a look at the clip of the video accompanying the following tweet from Tom Osinski, MD, who incidentally is a urology resident at the University of Rochester Medical Center and thus should know at least a wee bit about urine:
As you can see, this clip started off with Key telling his audience, “We have the antidote. And the antidote is even for those who’ve been vaccinated.” Then, before revealing what this “antidote” may be, he prefaced the big reveal with a few other statements such as “they’re going to tear me apart, but hey they tear me apart all the time” and “when I tell you this, please take it with a grain of salt, but go do the research.” Incidentally, urine does tend to have some sodium in it, but that may not have been the “grain of salt” that Key was alluding to in his statement.
Key eventually got to his key urine punch line with: “The antidote that we have seen now, and we have tons and tons of research, is urine therapy.”
He continued with “OK, and I know to a lot of you this sounds crazy, but guys, God’s given us everything we need.”
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Key tried to support his assertion by saying, “This has been around for centuries,” which is what you could also say about body lice, toe fungus, and sloth dung. He also mentioned “research” and “peer-reviewed publications on urine,” without offering much more specifics on these. It would have been helpful to hear more about this supposed research and how the studies were designed since it’s not easy to find such “pee-reviewed” studies in the scientific literature. For example, a PubMed search for “urine therapy” and “Covid-19” today returned zero results, which is exactly the same number of results that you get when you search for “I am a gigantic egg carton.”
A piece by Zachary Petrizzo for The Daily Beast included a longer version of the Telegram video. There you can hear Key claim that “this vaccine is the worst bioweapon I have ever seen,” and “I drink my own urine.” Really? Calling the Covid-19 vaccines a bioweapon? You mean the vaccines that the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) have authorized or approved? Seriously?
This certainly hasn’t been the first time that Key has railed against and made unfounded claims about the Covid-19 vaccines. For example, in August 2021, Florida lawyer Ron Filipkowski tweeted out the following video of Key threatening those administering vaccines in a Springfield, MO, Wal-Mart:
What exactly makes Key a urine specialist besides his presumably having a bladder and supposedly drinking his own urine? Well, he doesn’t appear to be a medical doctor or scientist. And “Vaccine Police” is not an official law enforcement title. If you see a crime and get the “Vaccine Police” instead, you’ve likely called the wrong number.
Before you blindly start treating your bladder like a expresso machine, you should first question the validity of Key’s urine therapy claims. In other words, mind your pees and Q’s. I’ve already covered for Forbes why you shouldn’t have a cow and consume cow dung or urine in an attempt to prevent or treat Covid-19. As I mentioned, cow dung and urine can have harmful pathogens such as ringworm and nasty E. coli. Now you may argue that you are different from a cow. You may say that unlike a cow you can log on to Facebook and that your urine is sterile. You may point to what the Patches O’Houlihan character insisted on in the movie Dodgeball: A True Underdog Story:
Well, here’s a shocker. Don’t get your private part science from a Hollywood comedy, even one that focuses on balls. Instead, look to scientific studies. For example, a study published in the Journal of Clinical Microbiology showed that your urine may not be a sterile as you think. Samples of urine from women had 85 different species of bacteria. And, spoiler alert. The presence of bacteria means that it’s not sterile.
Microbes aren’t the only problem with being too free with your pee. Urine contains waste products as well. Your kidneys form urine to get rid of waste from your body. These aren’t all necessarily “toxins” as the following tweet calls them:
But, in general, it’s not a good idea to drink what your kidneys worked so hard to get rid of in the first place. Think about it. Would you scrub food debris off of your dishes, throw the debris in the trash can, take the trash out onto the sidewalk, and then next morning bring the debris back into your kitchen in order to make an omelet? At least, you wouldn’t do that and still expect to have friends. Re-ingesting waste products from your urine may not be immediately harmful. Over time, though, doing so can end up overtaxing your kidneys. This would be akin to trapping your kidneys in a Groundhog’s Day situation, where it continues to see the same waste over and over again.
You may have noticed the hashtag #UrineIdiot on the tweet above and swirling around Twitter after Key’s video hit social media like urine in a toilet. Soon there were mentions of things like “wee the people”, “pee my Valentine”, “trickle-down” theories, and the “pee party movement” on social media:
You know once something spreads on social media, it’s only a matter of time before people start “live streaming” it. When The Ivy League of Comedy’s comedian Shaun Eli Breidbart heard about all of this, he quipped, “I’d love to see the list of the other ‘beverages’ they tried before they opted for urine,” and “will they be opening urine bars now?” He also joked that “drinking urine may help alleviate any toilet paper shortages.”
Yeah, it may not be a great idea to tell your significant other after a bathroom trip, “by the way, to conserve toilet paper, I decided to drink my urine instead.” And no, it probably won’t make things much better replacing “my” with “other people’s,” in this case. There’s no real scientific evidence that drinking anyone’s urine will protect you against Covid-19 in any way. That’s of course assuming that people don’t social distance from you when they hear that you drink urine. At the same time, drinking urine is not one of those “totally harmless” things that you can just do for the heck of it like doing a crossword puzzle or wearing a tiara.
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Plus, this whole “drink you own urine” thing only further detracts from combating the severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) with real evidence-based precautions such as vaccination and face mask wearing. Throughout the pandemic, there’s been a seemingly steady flow of bogus antidotes and treatments that have not been backed by science. The questionable products that have been pushed could fill a store that few would want to go to during non-pandemic times. Imagine how little business a store selling urine or de-wormer paste would have gotten before 2020. When you’ve got people thinking of drinking urine instead of getting vaccinated, you’ve got more than just.