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I stumbled upon a video of a baba (spiritual guru | Baba Ramdev) saying that cow urine contains gold.

This belief is widespread in India. I looked it up and many sites saying cow urine contains gold.

  1. Does cow urine contain gold?

  2. Is it in a different form like a salt?

  3. Is it different from any other urine i.e; does Human/other animals' urine contain the same?

The analysis of urine samples of 400 Gir cows done at the Food Testing Laboratory of JAU showed traces of gold ranging from three mg to 10 mg from one litre urine. The precious metal was found in ionic form, which is gold salts soluble in water.

http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/city/rajkot/Holy-cow-Junagadh-Agricultural-University-scientists-find-gold-in-Gir-cow-urine/articleshow/52948435.cms

The analysis of cow urine has shown that it contains nitrogen, sulphur, phosphate, sodium, manganese, carbolic acid, iron, silicon, chlorine, magnesium, melci, citric, titric, succinic, calcium salts, Vitamin A, B, C, D, E, minerals, lactose, enzymes, creatinine, hormones and gold.

http://www.remedyspot.com/cow-urine-can-cure-many-diseases/

Cow urine contains many minerals especially Copper, gold salts, etc. It compensates for bodily mineral deficiency. Presence of gold salts protects body against diseases.

https://cowurinebenefit.wordpress.com/2012/10/06/cow-urine-benefits/

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    It couldn't contain any more gold than they consume. – PointlessSpike Jun 23 '16 at 7:09
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    @PointlessSpike: Ahem. From the first source; "Cow urine contains copper, which is converted into gold inside the human body." It isn't part of the claim here. – Oddthinking Jun 23 '16 at 8:54
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    Conversion of one physical element to another in a metabolism? No dice. Going up 50 atomic numbers? What are you smoking? +1 to PointlessSpike's comment: If there's gold in the urine, it's been in the food. – DevSolar Jun 23 '16 at 9:23
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    @DevSolar- Or in the water. I said consume not eat. Gold is sometimes found in streams and such. So it's possible that some cows' urine might have gold in it; trace amounts from drinking water that contains it. But I suspect one would prefer to get the gold from the water source, not from the urine of cows that drink from it. – PointlessSpike Jun 23 '16 at 9:38
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    @DevSolar: Just to be clear. I am not claiming that cows or humans convert copper to gold. The first source claims that. I have studied enough Physics and Biology to know that only works in some geese. – Oddthinking Jun 23 '16 at 13:56
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According to Metabolomic and elemental analysis of camel and bovine urine by GC–MS and ICP–MS Saudi Journal of Biosciences volume 24, pages 23-29 (January 2017):

Bovine urine contained 0.005673 ppm gold.

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    To be clear, that's 0.005673 grams of gold per metric ton of urine. – Daniel R Hicks Dec 5 '17 at 20:20
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    @DanielRHicks Yes but if you can extract that, it would be worth 23 cents. – BobTheAverage Dec 5 '17 at 20:22
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    @BobTheAverage - Wow! I'm gonna sell the house and buy a cow herd! – Daniel R Hicks Dec 5 '17 at 20:28
  • Thank goodness for serious science, answering the tough questions. Does the study specify what region the cows are from? Could there be differences between American, European, and Indian cattle? – iamnotmaynard Dec 5 '17 at 21:45
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    It's worth comparing this number to the claim. ranging from three mg to 10 mg from one litre urine is 1000 times more than 0.005673 ppm. – ugoren Dec 6 '17 at 9:26
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Summary: Gold is found in trace amounts all over the place, including cow urine.


Gold is found in trace amounts in many things. From the report Gold Content of Water, Plants, and Animals.

Sea water contains from 0.001 to 44 ppb (parts per billion) gold.

This report reviews scientific papers which searched for trace amounts of gold in plants and animals. Scientists found gold in certain plants and animals, but not others. The species, body part, and region appear to be important.

It is worth noting that the report reviews research published in the 1960s. Modern detection methods are probably more sensitive. It seems probable that there were trace levels of gold present smaller than their instruments could detect.

From the same report:

Gold has been found in cow liver and brains, and in human blood, feces, and urine (Bertrand, 1932). Bertrand detected 0.3 ppm gold in human blood, 0.2 ppm in cow liver, but most of all, the brain of an ox yielded 14 ppm which indicates a high value for brains. The amount of gold in 32 samples of wet human liver tissue ranged from 0.03 to 0. 79 ppb and averaged 0.057 ppb (Parr and Taylor, 1963). In human blood the mean gold content is about 0.004 ppb, in erythrocytes about 0.008 ppb, and in plasma, about 0.006 ppb (Bagdavadze and others, 1965).

This gold is present in only trace amounts. A penny sunk in a ton of water is about 2.5 parts per million. The value for cow liver is roughly 1/10th of that.

Because we know that there is gold in a cow's liver, it is not surprising that it can also be found in cow urine.

This scientific paper found 0.005673 ppm gold in cow urine. This is roughly 1/36th the concentration found in cow livers by Bertrand (quoted in the previous report). I have to give a tip of my hat to DavePhD for finding this source.

As discussed previously, the concentration of gold in urine probably depends on a lot of different things. The paper does not describe in any detail how the cows were kept or held, or how much trace gold contaminated their food. The authors actually weren't interested in gold at all.

  • There is a detailed old study "Distribution of Gold in Animal Tissues" Journal of Pharmacology and Experimental Therapeutics, vol. XI, No. 5, where up to hundreds of milligrams of gold salts are introduced to the animals and it is analyzed where it goes. Roughly half is excreted as urine within a week. books.google.com/… – DavePhD Dec 6 '17 at 11:41

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