The meaning of changes in pee color & odor

What Your Pee Smell Signifies…

Your pee smell is perhaps the most fickle thing you ever experience…

But for most people, it may seem a little gross or downright embarrassing to talk about!

See, your urine can actually tell you some vital things about your health and the foods you are eating…

And one of the factors to pay attention to is your pee smell–which may have a lot to do with your dietary choices.

And talking of dietary choices…

There are food types known to greatly affect your pee smell.

They include the following:

  • Asparagus


This is probably the food most widely known for changing the way your urine smells.

You see, asparagus contains asparagusic acid, which your body converts into chemicals that contain sulfur. This is what causes the odor.

The sulfur-containing molecules are volatile, meaning their boiling point is low enough to vaporize at room temperature.

That means when you urinate, the molecules convert to a gaseous state and you can easily smell it.

Some believe the odor is related to sulfur-containing fertilizers used in growing asparagus.

Furthermore, it appears that some of you can smell the sulfur in your urine, while others cannot…

It may be attributable to genetic factors, but studies remain inconclusive. Researchers have to do more to unravel and explain the phenomenon.

Coffee adds to the list…

Coffee Brew

Did you know that you can take coffee, and after a short while, head to the restroom only to have your urine smell–sort of like the coffee?

Well…experts believe that this happens because coffee is a diuretic, meaning it induces frequent urination.

As a result, the uric acid, chemicals and vitamins may be more concentrated in the urine, leading to a more pungent odor.

Not only that…

Experts think that the insoluble oil released by coffee beans when they’re roasted may affect the odor of your urine, too.

What about Alcohol?

Alcoholic Drink

Turns out, just like coffee, alcohol can have a dehydrating effect, which concentrates the alcoholic compounds in the urine…

And that can impact the odor of your urine in a similar manner.

You may have noticed that after an imbibing session…eeh!

Garlic cannot be left out…


It’s almost common knowledge that eating garlic can result in bad oral breath

But it can sometimes affect the odor of your urine!

This is because it contains methyl mercaptan–the same sulfur compound that causes smelly urine when you eat asparagus.

Brussels sprouts

Brussels Sprout

While they’re regarded as a highly nutritious food, unfortunately, they can also make your urine smelly!

They contain the same sulfur compound found in both garlic and asparagus.

They could be your favorite–no problem, but at least, you know the unpleasant side effect!

And now…

It’s Salmon’s turn…


On a positive note, salmon loads massive omega-3 fatty acids, and has multiple health benefits…

The flip side is, it may change the smell of your urine. This is because it contains vitamin B 6.

Notably, vitamin B 6 is an important part of a healthy diet…

However, the downside is that, consuming large amounts of the vitamin may make your urine smell a little strange!

Some people report having the same experience when taking vitamin B6 supplements.

And Bananas?

A bunch of bananas

You may view bananas like a pretty benign food…

But like salmon, they’re rich in vitamin B6, and can, therefore, alter the odor of your pee.

This, of course, is more likely to happen if you consume large amounts of bananas, or banana-containing foods.

The foregoing are just a few of the foods that can impact the smell of your urine.

There is significant evidence–both demonstrable and anecdotal–suggesting that many more foods have a similar effect.

Is a Change in Pee Smell a Sign of Health Issues?

The simple answer is: “It depends“.

If it happens merely as a result of eating asparagus, for example, then it perhaps has little impact on your overall health, and it is not something to exercise your mind.

However, in some cases, the odor of your urine may say something more significant about the state of your health.

For example, a change in odor may be a symptom of urinary tract infection.

It’s also believed that very sweetly smelling urine may be a sign of diabetes.

What About Color Change?

Changes in the color of your urine may be harmless

Not drinking enough water during the day, for instance, can give your urine a brighter shade of yellow.

Once you notice that, stay hydrated and you’ll just be fine.

What’s more…

Certain foods like beets can give your urine a dark, purplish-red appearance. This can be alarming because it resembles the color of blood. But, by and large, it’s completely harmless.

Sometimes a change in color may indicate something sinister about the state of your health.

Urine that’s consistently dark in color, for example, may be a sign of hepatitis.

More often than not, a change in color and odor of your urine may be a harmless side effect of consuming certain foods.

However, if the changes persist, don’t take them for granted!

Seek the opinion of a competent medical professional.

And…there you are…

Now you know what is likely to change the color and odor of your urine…

And when to get concerned about it.

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Stay tuned…