I’ve been wanting to write this post for a while. Years. And for whatever reason, I’ve never sat down to do it. But here I am, finally FINALLY sitting down to do it. Did you guys know I smelled TERRIBLE the first year after c. diff. No lie, I smelled like a garbage can. Or maybe it was more of a toxic waste smell. I don’t know. All I know is that I smelled BAD. Really, really bad. I went to countless doctors after c. diff. (Well, technically I started going to doctors a few weeks before… but anyway…) and at each doctor visit, I listed my smell as a symptom. I asked each individual doctor (again, countless ones) about my smell. I had never smelled bad before. I mean, maybe not never, I’ sure I smelled of B.O. at some points in my life. But I had never smelled toxic before. And each doctor gave me a shrug or a shrug-off. Nothing more.

The thing is, now I get it. Doctors don’t really understand how the body works altogether. I mean, most doctors don’t anyway. You see a stomach doctor, or an ear doctor, or a joint doctor and not any of them is going to tell you that what you put in your stomach affects your ears and joints. Not one. And so when I went into each appointment and asked each and every doctor about my smell, not one could tell me that my smell was directly related to what was happening inside my body. Not one.

But the thing is– that’s exactly how body odor works. It’s directly related to what’s happening inside your body. For a very, very long time after c. diff. I smelled bad. My c. diff was gone (as far as I know– it might still be lurking, but my microbiome had and has it under control), but I continued to smell bad. My body was detoxing. My body was doing me the favor of purging out all the bacteria, and toxins and die off, and all the general garbage that was making a home inside my body. My body was like, “no you don’t belong here, later for you” and kicking out all the garbage. And I smelled bad because of it.

It didn’t help that I was overloading my body with fat and protein either. I was so concerned about the massive amount of weight I lost that I was overloading my body with foods that the body just couldn’t digest well. Even a healthy gut does better on a lower protein diet (research it if you don’t believe me). Our bodies do better and thrive when we feed it the foods we were designed for. But no, I was loading up on copious amounts of oils and proteins. And for what? Of course, I never gained the weight back like that. How do you gain weight when you cant digest nutrients? And so… my body was purging all the things in any way it could. And you could smell it.

Eventually, the smell went away. I can’t tell you exactly how long it took. (Not that it matters now anyway.) And I was free from smell– at least most of the time and for a good while anyway. Because the thing is— now? Thanks to detoxing efforts, I do often smell bad again. Or I often smell like what I eat. Like, I really really smell like what I eat. Like, if I drink a juice with celery in it, you will smell celery the next day– or at least crazy salty with a touch of celery in it. If I eat turmeric, cumin, and garlic, I smell like turmeric and garlic the next day. You truly are what you eat– and what you eat will surely find a way to excrete out of you.

So now, in the times when I’m focused on detoxing once again— this time actively and consciously detoxing, well, I find myself saying to the people around me, “I’m sorry I smell bad, I’m just detoxing.” I’m sure most scratch their heads a bit and leave with questions buzzing in their heads. But some do get it. Every day what you put in your body directly affects your body. And every day our bodies are doing their damn best to protect us. And so they purge out what we don’t need.

Do you smell bad? Your body is talking to you. It’s signaling that there are things being processed in your body that need to go. Meat, dairy, heavy fats, processed junk, even cooked foods, all those things will make you smell bad. Want to smell different? Try changing what you put in and on your body and your odor will change too.

I don’t wear deodorant anymore. I stopped a long time ago. I don’t need to mask anything. I don’t want to mask anything. I want to know if my body is thriving or fighting something off. And I have no shame. I’ll apologize for the moments I smell bad, but don’t confuse that with embarrassment. I don’t feel it. My body is doing a natural thing. And I know it won’t be long until the smells that are lingering are out for good.

I couldn’t work out after I first got sick. It would detox my body too quickly. Even two years after my initial diagnosis, I would struggle after workouts. Even a light yoga class would leave me feeling feverish and toxic. Now I work out regularly, and unless it’s a very new exercise to a usually unmoved muscle in my body, I’m fine and recover rather quickly after workouts. I don’t feel especially toxic or feverish and detox-y. And it’s wonderful.

But the smell? Well, it’s coming up again now that I’m actively attempting to detox. Well, it’s a different smell before, but certainly a toxic one. Regular workouts, sauna, detox friendly foods (fruits mostly), and whatever other attempts to detox my body of all these heavy metals and toxic die-offs have me smelling not so wonderful again. If we’re being super open here, I’d describe it almost like a burning plastic smell. (Ew).  And in those times, I might explain (externally or internally) to the people around me, “Sorry I smell bad, I’m just detoxing.” (And so are you).

😉

Ps. If you really want to get over-sharing and personal… my poop doesn’t stink. Truly. I mean, unless I eat papaya, and then it smells like papaya. Otherwise, *poof* nothing.

Pps. I thought it would be smart to mention hormones — since it was brought up in comments. Hormones absolutely will change your smell too. I’ve talked about this on instagram, but our bodies need to detox some of our hormones just like anything else that is within our bodies. This is why people who eat clean, dairy-free and gluten-free diets have easier periods too. If you pay close attention to your body you’ll notice how different stages of your cycle will affect your smell. 🙂 Cheers!

7 Comments

  1. I’ve been having this problem for a couple of weeks! My body smell! I ‘ve had this problem before (after I turned 39-I’m 42 now) but it was gone! I thought it was the hormones or something. Thank you for sharing! xx

    • It can totally be hormonal too! Your body has to detox estradiol and other hormones too 🙂 If you pay close attention you’ll notice you smells lightly different during different parts of your cycle 🙂

  2. I find this topic so interesting, thank you for sharing! I have been eating plantbased (very clean, but not perfect) for 5 years now and my B.O. does NOT smell great. I recently started putting chlorophyll drops in my water at night and I smell wayyyy better, just wanted to share lol. I always tell my husband I should smell like acai because I eat it so often. xx, Beth

  3. Wow! It really matters what you put in and on your body…
    I was wondering, do you make your own soap or what do you use? Could yo please do a blog post about skin care “products”?? It’d be awesome!!

    • yes! def. on the list! 🙂 I’ve done a few– but they’re like years old! I def. need an updated one 🙂

  4. Just curious if you were ever tested for SIBO when you were going through the thick of all your stomach/health troubles? I found your blog a couple years back when I was also going through a major health decline. It took 4 years to diagnose, but I kept searching for answer and ended up having SIBO. I’ve had treatment and am doing much better now. I know SIBO and C Diff not the same, but I just feel for you that it seems there’s no end to the diet adjustments you have to make to live with c diff. I’ve been able to go back to how I ate pre-SIBO (whole food vegan). Not sure why I’m asking, but purely curious I guess. I’m happy to see you persevere through it all 😎

    • I haven’t! Most gut tests are highly inaccurate so it just doesn’t seem worth my time, effort, or money to do any more testing. Like, with celiac for example, I don’t need to go through any procedure to confirm anything– since it’s pretty obvious that whenever I even have one bite of gluten my stomach swells up for anywhere from a week to three weeks.

      I’ve def has SIBO like symptoms– so I’ve questioned it in the past. But now, my stomach is pretty good except when I get around certain allergens (like gluten)– then it flares up again. So as long as I avoid allergen foods then I’m actually good now! Like, I get my diet can seem restrictive for some– but I actually really enjoy the way I eat now. And sometimes I eat junkier things for pleasure– but I just have to be careful getting around those allergenic foods. Thats the tough part (why I eat at home often). I do think that once I can detox these heavy metals my allergies should go away completely– but I’d probably still avoid those foods anyway 🙂

      I like curious questions. I’m like that too. Always curious haha.

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