Why does asparagus make urine stink

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why does asparagus make urine stink

Why Does Asparagus Make Your Pee Smell?: Fascinating Food Trivia Explained with Science by Andy Brunning


Have you ever wondered...

• Why bacon smells so good?
• Why onions make you cry?
• If eating turkey makes you sleepy?
• If mixing drinks makes a hangover worse?
• How energy drinks work?
• Why chocolate is poisonous to dogs?
• Why coffee makes you more wired than tea?
• Why cilantro tastes soapy to some?

The answers to these baffling questions and more are revealed in this friendly, informative collection of trivia. Not a scientist? No problem. This book’s colorful graphics and easy-to-understand explanations make these food facts fun for everyone.
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Why does my urine smell so bad ? - Better Health Channel

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Andy Brunning

Why Does Asparagus Make Your Pee Smell?

Deny this all you like, but those green stalks contain something called asparagusic acid, among a couple other compounds, that gives urine that unique odor. As your body digests food, it breaks down different compounds through the enzymatic process. In the case of asparagus, its compounds are volatile and released as a vapor through the urine. This is because our perception of smell — just like our perception of color — is completely personal. There are about different genes for the different receptors in every nose. Some people have a mutation in one of these genes that affects the ability of that receptor to respond to the chemical that makes pee smell funny. Davison guesses the mutation happened over time.

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Have you eaten asparagus and noticed that it can alter how your urine smells? Why do certain foods change our urine and does it make a difference to our health? Observations of how what we eat can affect our pee can be traced back through history, from the ancient Greeks including Antiphon and Theophrastes to an early edition of the medical journal The Lancet in This happened to coincide with the British agrarian revolution when fertilisers containing sulphur were first used on crops, although there is no real evidence to say if this effect is causal. There have been different theories put forward over the years explaining why only some people notice a smell in their urine after eating asparagus. It was first thought that some people broke down the vegetable in a way that released a smelly chemical in the urine.

Some people can smell the characteristic odor that asparagus gives to their urine , while others cannot. Now, a study reveals more than new reasons why this strange phenomenon happens. Researchers analyzed the genes of about 6, people and found new genetic variants linked with an inability to detect this odor. Lorelei Mucci, an associate professor of epidemiology at Harvard T. Chan School of Public Health,and her colleaguescame up with the idea for the study at a scientific conference where their dinner included asparagus.

The science behind the stink. Asparagus pee. But why does asparagus make your pee smell bad? Well, the answer is kinda complicated. Arbuthnot noted that the vegetable "affects the urine with a foetid smell Soooo, yeah. During digestion, this acid is broken down into sulphur-containing compounds which tend to evaporate rather quickly.


  1. Serge L. says:


  2. Laetitia Q. says:

    Some people notice their urine has a distinctive odor after eating asparagus.

  3. Porter B. says:

    Jul 1, As it turns out, everyone's urine is suffused with a distinct odor after If you smell a funny fragrance in your urine after you eat asparagus.

  4. Laertes S. says:

    May 3, Scientists tell us that the asparagus-urine link all comes down to one It's still unclear why some people don't produce the smell, but we do.

  5. Claudia D. says:

    Asparagus contains a sulphurous compound called mercaptan (which is also found in rotten eggs, onions and garlic). When your digestive system breaks down.

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