Science Questions

Why after eating asparagus does your urine smell so strong?

Sun, 5th Nov 2006

Part of the show Naked Science Q&A and Record Breaking Fireworks

Question

Jenny via email asked:

Why after eating asparagus does your urine smell so strong?

Answer

There must be a chemical in the asparagus that is absorbed into your blood through your gut, and then filtered out by your kidney into your urine. Scientists don't know what the chemical is, but it must move quickly as people can smell it in their urine after only half an hour. Interestingly some people claim not to be able to smell the difference.

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