Body Odors: Can you identify the cause?

January 03, 2021

Disclaimer : This page contains an affiliate link to products.  We may receive a commission for purchases made through this link.



When it comes to body odors and inflammation- this generally points to an infectious cause. The list of cause and smell is below:


  • Scrofula: stale beer
  • Bacterial vaginosis: fishy smell
  • Halitosis: bad breath- sleep apnea, foreign body stuck in throat, tonsillitis, sinusitis
  • Diabetes: fruity breath from diabetic ketoacidosis
  • Stinky feet: athletes foot of peeling or blistering, bacterial (corynebacterium) if tiny little pits on bottom of foot
  • Foul smelling poops: lactose intolerance, a number of viral or bacterial diarrhea triggers
  • Typhoid: freshly baked brown bread
  • Rubella: plucked feathers
  • Diphtheria: ‘sweetish’
  • Pellagra: sour bread
  • Urinary tract infection: strong foul or pungent urine
  • Exotic favus: mousy
  • Candida: heavy sweetness 
  • Darier’s disease:  ‘organic’
  • Pseudomonas: foul and biting (I once had the sweetest elderly gentleman that came in for a rash on his legs that he had not tended to for years. He kept with him bottles of cologne. He was so aware of the odor from his legs he would pour 2-3 bottles of cologne on his pants over the course of week to mask the odor. He came in because he couldn’t afford to keep up with the cost of cologne. He was too embarrassed at the appearance of his legs to be seen sooner. So upsetting to think of what he dealt with for years that was treated in less than a month with the right antibiotic:( 
  • Non infected eczema: smell ‘dry’


Inflammation is your body’s way of reacting against a stress. When your body experiences stress- physical, mental or emotional- it will mount a reaction attempting to protect us. Physical stresses can be infectious- bacterial, fungal, yeast, viral, etc; trauma to the body from an injury or repetitive use, medications, foods, pets, etc.  Mental or emotional stress could be life changes- job changes, relationships, moving, traveling, etc. 

Inflammation is a build up of an army of immune cells attacking something that it doesn’t think should be there. As it attacks it will break down whatever target it has and can impact the surrounding tissues. If it’s an infectious target it will result in the release of odors from the bacteria or yeast it’s targeting. If it’s not an external target, the inflammation will build up around our own tissue and start to break down soft tissue. 

Usually stronger odors are released in the presence of bacteria and yeast as I’m not aware of cases of arthritis that release odors! 

The key to lowering inflammation is:

  • To determine where the inflammation is
  • Try to determine a cause
  • Treat the cause

For example, if there is a true infectious cause, treating the cause will lower the inflammation. Our bodies may need a little help from antibiotics to help it out. 

For areas of inflammation that are not well defined focus on diet and stress as your possible triggers. We know that the higher the glycemic index of the diets we have the higher the inflammation in our bodies. Reducing the glycemic index of our overall diet can reduce the stress this places on our bodies. If it’s a particularly stressful time in your life, think of inflammation as a check engine light that tells us we need to regroup and re-evaluate because our bodies are telling us something! 




Leave a comment

Please note: comments must be approved before they are published.