Claim: A post by Sadestyledme claimed that adding salt to urine can be used to test pregnancy in women.
Verdict: Misleading! Several authorities, including a Family Planning expert, insist there is no scientific evidence to show that adding salt to urine can indicate whether a woman is pregnant.
A viral video by Sadestyledme on Instagram claimed that adding salt to urine can indicate if a woman is pregnant.
In the video, the woman explained how it works:
“I am a girls, girls… ladies if you need to know if you’re pregnant or not, pee inside of a cup, pour in some salt, wait for 20 minutes. If it fizzes, you’re pregnant. If it stays clear, you’re not pregnant.”
Fizzes in a liquid means the production of bubbles and the making of a hissing sound.
At the time of writing this report, the post had received 904,095 likes, 3,268 comments and 390,000 shares.
DUBAWA decided to investigate the claim because of its virality and potential to misinform.
Over the years, several methods have been used to indicate if a woman is pregnant. Most of these tests use either urine or blood and ultrasound. At-home pregnancy tests that use urine are the most common. It is noted that the at-home pregnancy tests are 99% accurate when used correctly.
Blood or urine pregnancy tests aim to look for Human Chorionic Gonadotropin (HCG) presence. HCG is a special hormone that only develops in a person’s body during pregnancy. HCG levels build up as soon as a fertilised egg is implanted in the uterus. This occurs six to ten days after conception.
An article by MedicalNewsToday revealed that no scientific evidence supports that scientific tests with salt are reliable.
“No scientific data suggest that anything in a person’s urine reacts with salt to indicate pregnancy,” the article posited.
We also spoke to a midwifery and family planning officer, Givens Yeboah, who works at the Family Planning Unit, Manhyia Government Hospital, Kumasi.
In her response, she said she has heard of such traditional ways to detect or indicate whether a woman is pregnant.
“I have heard of it as a superstition or traditional way, but there is no evidence.”
She added that the only related practice is mixing salt with warm water to reduce the impact of infections in women.
The assertion that adding salt to urine can help indicate if a woman is pregnant is misleading. There is no scientific evidence to back it.