5 Gross But Normal Things Your Body Does When You’re Eating Enough Veggies
If you've decided to add more fruits and vegetables to your diet, you've likely noticed some changes in your body — or, changes in what's coming out of your body. Before you freak out, what you're experiencing is normal. Some gross things your body does actually mean you're eating enough veggies, which is kind of like a consolation prize. Maybe you're running to the bathroom more often, you notice your pee smells like rotten eggs, or your poop has a reddish hue. While these changes might make your squeamish, they're actually a sign that you're getting the vitamins and nutrients your body needs.
Some of the reactions your body is having to your new diet might even be alarming. For example, if you've ever headed to the doctor for your red poop, only to realize in the waiting room that your poop is red because you had beets for dinner, you're not alone. If you're not used to eating a diet rich in fruits and veggies, some of the changes you're experiencing can catch you off guard. This actually happens to everyone, though because it's generally not considered polite dinner conversation, you might feel alone in your purple-poop struggle.
The bottom line? If you're experiencing any of these "gross" side effects from your healthy diet, there's nothing wrong with you. But here's what they're *actually* all about.
1. Reddish Poop Or Pee
While blood in your stool or urine can be a sign of a medical problem, many people notice that their poop or pee has a reddish hue after they've eaten beets. According to Medical News Today, around 10-14 percent of beet eaters experience what is known as beeturia. People with an iron deficiency are more likely to get this red surprise when they go to the bathroom after eating beets.
"Beeturia can cause unnecessary anxiety among patients and their families and can lead to expensive investigations," a study in the Journal of Current Surgery noted. If you experience beeturia, you're most likely fine. If you're worried, you can ask your doctor to test your iron levels.
2. Stinky Pee
If you've recently added asparagus to your diet, you might notice that your pee smells sort of foul. Not everyone develops smelly pee from eating asparagus, and not everyone can smell it, according to Medical News Today. But if it has happened to you, it can be alarming. That rotten egg smell is the result of the sulfur compounds present in asparagus, and while it might be unpleasant, it's nothing to worry about.
3. Garlicky Body Odor
Like asparagus, garlic also contains sulfur compounds, and some people can develop garlic body odor after consuming it. If you're one of these people, it doesn't mean you should stop eating garlic, but maybe you should be mindful of when you eat it. "Maybe eat it at night," Bhimu Patil, a horticulturist at Texas A&M University, told NPR. "That way you can also lead a social life."
4. More Trips To The Bathroom
If you're running to the bathroom more often since you've increased your fruit and veggie intake — while inconvenient — it's totally normal. This happens because a lot of fruits and vegetables — like apples, prunes, kiwi, pears, artichokes, and sweet potatoes — act as a natural laxative, according to Healthline. If you're going someplace where you don't want to be running off to make a number two every five minutes, maybe cut down on these poop-inducing foods beforehand.
5. Leafy Green Poop
Are you a card-carrying member of the kale craze? Perhaps you've noticed that sometimes your poop has a distinctly greenish hue and looks almost leafy. In most cases, this is actually a sign that you're consuming a healthy amount of green vegetables, according to Health. "Green vegetables that contain a great deal of chlorophyll such as broccoli, brussels sprouts, sea vegetables and alfalfa are also healthy additions to your diet that may cause your stool to turn green." If your green poop is accompanied by cramps and diarrhea, you should visit your doctor to see if it's an indication of an underlying medical problem.
When you first start introducing more fruits and veggies into your diet, you're more likely to experience some of these "gross" but totally normal side effects. If you're physically uncomfortable, try introducing new fruits and veggies slowly. While your colorful poop and smelly pee might freak you out, it's actually a sign that your body is doing exactly what it's supposed to.