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While 'Asparagus Pee' Is A Real Thing, Apparently Not Everyone Can Smell It

While 'Asparagus Pee' Is A Real Thing, Apparently Not Everyone Can Smell It
Updated 2 months ago

We all know that smell. You know what we're talking about — when you've eaten a boatload of asparagus and then a few hours later, your pee is pungent enough to fill the bathroom with its odor. At least we thought we all knew that smell. It turns out not everyone can smell asparagus pee. Asparagus contains asparagusic acid, which is what causes the odor.

According to an article published by Huffington Post on Monday:

If you insist you’ve never before smelled what’s been informally dubbed 'asparagus pee,' it’s because you lack the ability to detect the odor. The smell is there, you just can’t smell it. 'The digestive process is pretty constant from person to person, but a person’s ability to detect these odors varies,' Sheth says. This is because our perception of smell — just like our perception of color — is completely personal. 'We all have our own idiosyncratic smell perception of the world,' Dr. Ian Davison, a biology professor at Boston University, explains to HuffPost. 'Our experience of different smells is completely unique.' The inability to smell this asparagus pee is an instance of specific anosmia, where a specific scent cannot be detected by a specific nose.

The article explains that it all comes down to genes and, believe it or not, only about half of the human population can smell it. For those who can smell it, and want to avoid it, apparently cutting off the tips of the asparagus helps because they're were the majority of the asparagusic acid is found.

It seems some people may be interested in trying that technique:

Others' reactions might make them want to reconsider eating asparagus at all:

Raise your hand if you've been personally victimized by asparagus pee...