Spring is Asparagus Season – YUM, I love it. The only downside is that some people smell like a tom cat when they eat it …and I am one of them ! So why is it that asparagus turns some people’s pee into a stink bomb and others not ??
Well, it’s all got to do with a sulphur compound called mercaptan (which is also found in rotten eggs, onions and garlic). When our gut enzymes break down mercaptan by-products are released that cause the strange smell. The process is quick, so quick that your urine can develop the distinctive smell within 15 minutes of eating asparagus. Not everyone suffers this effect however. Your genetic makeup determines whether you get the tom cat syndrome …. or whether you can actually smell it.
Only some people appear to have the gene for the enzyme that breaks down mercaptan into Tom Cat pee. Me …. well I can put up with the stench. Asparagus is too delicious.