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Thread: sweat smells like ammonia? not enough water and fat? page

  1. #1
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    sweat smells like ammonia? not enough water and fat?

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    I have been smelling amonia in my sweat. saw online that it could be from my body starting to use my muscle as energy. i am low carb and low fat is that my problem? my diet is 46% fat, 32% protein, 22% carbs. good carbs veggies and maybe an apple or single piece of fruit. I eat between 1600 and2000 calories a day and about 60 to 70 grams of fat usually. have lost 80lbs total. 45 way of the primal. any help is appreciated.

    Mark

  2. #2
    Maleficarum's Avatar
    Maleficarum is offline Member
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    google information on ketosis... this topic comes up a lot... there is not a lot of good info on why we sometimes smell bad... but with no regularity... it's one of those mysteries of life...

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    AnneArchy's Avatar
    AnneArchy is offline Senior Member
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    I had this problem and tried everything until I realized the smell was linked to coffee/caffeine consumption. It was simple- no caffeine no smell, cup of coffee- smell is back.

    Do you drink coffee?

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    Thanks for replying. There isn't much on google. And yes I drink coffee only 2 cups a day. This has started over the last few weeks since I have lowered my fat intake significantly. Was wondering if that could be it. Looks like my body is burning my muscle from most sights I've seen. I run 2 and a half miles a day and lift weights every 3rd day. Only get the smell when I do my run.

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    Mike Gager's Avatar
    Mike Gager is offline Senior Member
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    ammonia smell has nothing to do with ketosis

    Discovery Health "Why does your sweat sometimes smell like ammonia?"

    A high-protein, low-carbohydrate diet is generally what leads to sweat stinking of ammonia. Basically, it works like this. When someone with this sort of diet begins to exercise, his or her body is quickly forced to turn to proteins for the necessary energy. To do this, amino acids are broken down into various components, parts of which are converted into glucose. Other elements that come out of the process are waste products, and if the body can't handle everything being sent its way, the leftovers are excreted out through the skin. Ammonia is one form that ready-to-go waste can take.

    Typically, ammonia (very bad in large amounts) would be converted into urea (less bad in large amounts) and safely expelled through urine. Too much ammonia, and the body falls back on its old detoxifying fail-safe: sweat. And stinky sweat at that. Otherwise, an overload of ammonia can impair neurological functions and cause muscle fatigue.

    If cutting the protein and upping the carbs doesn't completely do the trick, try drinking more water. Water will dilute the ammonia, as well as make it easier to excrete
    Primal Chaos
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    Maleficarum's Avatar
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    ok... ill relent... the ammonia smell is from protein burning... acetone is from fat burning... *sigh* can you really tell the difference on clothes after exercising... in either case... you are not burning glucose and your body is telling you this by producing byproducts. i dont think it's a bad sign... despite the discovery health post above... protein is the last source of energy your body chooses to utilize... try upping the fat.

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    i upped the fat and not only did it stop but i feel amazing again. fitday messed me up by reccommending 73 grams of fat a day. with that little fat and between 40 to 60 carbs a day i was starving. up to between 150 and 200 grams of ffat and i feel incredible.
    thanks guys.

  8. #8
    Mac's Avatar
    Mac
    Mac is offline Senior Member
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    Ya, I had/have a similar issue. I stink when I sweat!!!! I had an inkling it is caused by protein.

  9. #9
    DeeDub's Avatar
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    Just bumping this as I had a question. I've been 95/5 primal and VLC for a good long stretch. Last night was a work-related holiday function that couldn't be avoided and I had quite a few carbs. This morning I woke up unusually sweaty, and the waft of ammonia came with the sweat. I keep a log, and the only other times Ive had this kind of sweaty ammonia night over the past six months were after days with similar carb-overload.

    I find it hard to believe that a bit of carb-indulgence translates into protein-burning - I just don't see the connection - there is plenty of other fuel present. Is there an alternate explanation?

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    Hardwarehank's Avatar
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    Could be the insulin from the carb-binging is locking away your fat so your body turns to protein? Just a guess on my part.

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