New Zealand First has defended dumping an election candidate who drank his own urine on a TV show.

Joe Glenn, a 69-year-old former SAS soldier, had been standing for the party in the Rimutaka electorate, but was asked to withdraw his candidacy following his appearance last month on a 20/20 item about extreme diets.

On the programme, Mr Glenn spoke about how drinking his urine each day had helped to cure his arthritis, and then downed a glass for the cameras.

The episode did not refer to Mr Glenn's New Zealand First candidacy, and did not discuss politics.

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Yesterday, New Zealand First president Kevin Gardener said he was not worried that getting rid of Mr Glenn would be seen as unfair.

"The majority of people in New Zealand have at some time gone behind a bush to relieve themselves, but not everybody in New Zealand has urinated in a glass and drunk it on public television," Mr Gardener said.

"The majority of New Zealanders weren't impressed with it. They might not be impressed with us dumping him ... but that's the way we are this time."