There is no way around it. Poops are pretty much stinky for everyone.
But what If you notice your poop suddenly smells weird, like a weed? There's nothing to worry about, but it's not uncommon. Even if you don't smoke or consume weed, your stool smells peculiar.
So what could be the reasons behind it? Is it really something that you should be concerned about?
Here's the thing. Our poop – Its color, shape, texture, consistency, and even smell says a lot about our health. And when it comes to smell, it's perfectly normal for your poop to have an unpleasant odor.
The poop smell usually comes from bacteria in the colon that break down food in the digestive tract. But foul-smelling urine and stools could be concerning. It's a sign that something is off with your health.
So “Why does my poop smell like weed?” If you find yourself asking this question out of curiosity, continue reading as we explain the possible reasons behind this uncommon condition.
Understanding the concept –
Your stools can smell like anything. It all depends on what you've eaten and how well your digestive system is working. But this doesn't necessarily mean it should smell like something you've eaten, even if you have something edible like cannabis.
The smell of your feces generally comes from undigested food mixed with gas produced by the bacteria in your gut. Hydrogen sulfide, methyl sulfides, and benzopyrrole volatiles are among the most common gasses behind that odor.
Weed, also known as cannabis or marijuana, is basically dried leaves, flowers, stems, and seeds derived from the Cannabis sativa plant. Nearly half of Americans (around 78 million) use this common drug.
Cannabis has a skunky or pungent odor that is easily recognized by those who are familiar with it, and the smell comes from terpenes and cannabinoids present in it. These unpleasant odors can be due to dietary habits or taking certain medications.
For the most part, your poop has a weed-like odor due to the high consumption of edibles. Apparently, if you eat lots of edibles, especially those with low-quality ones, your stools may undoubtedly smell like weed.
In fact, there have been many discussions on Google and Reddit threads where people have talked about this phenomenon. No matter how embarrassing it may sound, talking about it with a healthcare professional is a must.
Now, let's understand the main question at hand:
Why Does My Poop Smell Like Weed? – Common Reasons
Here are some of the possible reasons why your poop smells like weeds. Surprisingly apart from the poop smell, they can also be why your farts smell like weed.
i) You have recently consumed marijuana.
The most obvious reason is that it's a direct outcome of marijuana consumption. You might have been smoking weed or using edibles, which is why your feces have a weed-like odor.
When you consume or smoke edibles, the aromatic compounds, namely terpenoids and Terpenes (terps, for short) and metabolites found in cannabis plants, enter your bloodstream and change several body systems, including digestion. The compounds are further expelled through bodily fluids such as urine and stools.
Another concept is that edibles, including marijuana, contain THC (delta- 9-tetrahydrocannabinol) as the main ingredient. This substance can inhibit digestion and cause extra gas to be produced by your intestines.
For your information, THC is the main isomer in cannabis, and it is believed to be responsible for the majority of marijuana's psychoactive effects.
Studies involving human subjects show that approximately 65% of THC is excreted from your body through feces, while nearly 30% of the THC is eliminated in the urine.
Apart from poop, some people notice their skin also smells like weed. Since terps are fat-soluble chemicals, like THC, they might be stored in fat cells and excreted through sweat during workouts. This is the reason many people who often do heavy workouts smell like weed.
So that means if you have recently consumed cannabis, marijuana, or any other edibles, it's possible that the smell may manifest in your poop. And there's nothing to worry about as your body is attempting to eliminate the bad stuff through excretion.
But what if you've never consumed edibles in your life and still notice a weed-like odor in your poop? Let's get into other potential reasons that could be the cause of this stinky poop.
ii) You have changed your diet –
The first thing that comes to your mind is thinking about what food you have eaten lately.
Yes, your food choice is undeniably the main culprit behind your bad-smelling poop. Onions, eggs, black pepper, asparagus, and garlic are some of the common foods responsible for that stinky poop! These foods may release sulfur compounds during digestion, giving your stool a distinct odor.
In addition, using spices and herbs like cumin or coriander, along with cruciferous veggies like broccoli, can also make your poop smell like weed. Strong-smelling oils and seasonings used in cooking can have an impact too.
Even yet, it is somewhat unlikely that this would happen.
iii) Your gut microbiome is the culprit –
The bacteria in your stomach, known as gut microbiota, play an important role in digestion and overall health.
If something disrupts the balance of these bacteria, it can change the fecal smell. So, it's possible that using marijuana affects the microbial setting in your stomach, which indirectly affects the smell of your poop.
Besides, factors such as antibiotic use, illness, or a sudden shift in dietary habits can also influence the microbiota, resulting in a weed-like smell.
iv) You have poor hygienic habits –
Poor hygiene practices, such as not properly wiping or partially cleansing after pooping, can leave persistent smells. And it can be confused with the scent of a marijuana plant.
Make sure to maintain good hygiene and cleanliness in your restroom every day. This will help remove any residual aromas and avoid associations with the bad smell of marijuana.
v) You may have metabolism issues –
Your body's metabolism and disposal processes can also add to the link between feces and cannabis odor.
When marijuana or its metabolites are broken down by your body, they might be eliminated as waste products. The presence of these chemicals during elimination can make your stool smell like cannabis.
Researchers discovered an interaction between the endocannabinoid system, which interacts with cannabis compounds, and the gut flora.
This association suggests that changes in the gut flora could contribute to the unusual smell of your feces. In the end, this creates a unique connection between your digestive health and the smell of the poop.
vi) You're taking certain medications or supplements.
Although it's extremely uncommon, there are some medications or supplements that may be the culprit.
Some prescription medications, like antibiotics or hormones, can mess with the odor of your poop. They interfere with gut bacteria and cause your feces to move faster or slower through your colon. In rare cases, they promote malabsorption of certain nutrients; this way, it leads to skunky poop.
Supplements that are high in sulfates include glucosamine, chondroitin, MSM (Methylsulfonylmethane), and garlic. The bacteria in your colon convert this sulfate into sulfide, which releases foul-smelling gasses.
As a result, these stinky gasses are expelled from your stool when you go to the restroom.
Does weed make your poop green?
No. Weed has nothing to do with your poop color. There's no scientific evidence behind it.
Yes, some people may panic when they see their poop turn white, green, red, or even black. But if we talk about weed turning your poop green, there's no way it's the reason.
Although many leafy foods can turn your poop green, weed has the power to do so. There are other things that may cause your stools to turn green, not only cannabis.
If you take edibles and follow it up with a salad, it shouldn't come as a surprise if your feces end up being green.
The only time marijuana changes your stool color is when you take too much of it, more than your body can process. In such cases, the weed you eat will convert to waste in your gut and intestines before exiting your body.
Does weed make you poop a lot?
Yes. Similar to how smoking cigarettes can make you poop often, weed can also make you poop a lot.
There's a lot of data and research that shows smoking weed or other edibles can make you poop often. An endocannabinoid known as 2-AG interacts with the gastrointestinal tract (GI) to cause bowel movements. ]
THC mimics this action, which is why you may feel the urge to go to the washroom shortly after smoking or taking edibles.
Even though weed tends to slow down stool passage, a recent cohort study found that people who used weed pooped more than those who didn't.
Should I be worried if my poop smells bad?
In general, there's no need to worry if your poop smells bad or skunky. Many people start panicking as they fear it could be a sign of a serious health condition.
But that's not at all true.
The thing is, our digestive system is utterly complicated. Any new or unusual stuff you eat changes your bowel movement. For example, when you eat peanut butter, you'll experience constipation for a few days.
This type of change is common and usually goes away within a day or two. However, if you notice a persistent smell in your poop, typically for more than two days, you must speak with a healthcare specialist.
Additionally, there are some health risks linked to having stinky poop, such as metabolic syndrome, heart disease, irritable bowel syndrome (IBS), or inflammatory bowel disease (IBD).
So pay attention to any unusual symptoms like abdominal pain, and talk with your doctor if needed.
Tips To Reduce Your Weed-Like Smell
If you're highly concerned or feeling uncomfortable about the weed-like odor in your poop, you can try making some lifestyle changes.
- Make changes to your diet.
- Increase your fiber intake (whole grains, fruits, legumes)
- Stay hydrated by drinking plenty of water and fresh juices to soften the stools.
- Eat probiotic-rich foods (kimchi, yogurt, kefir) or probiotic supplements.
- Engage in regular exercise for at least 30 minutes a day.
- Regularly clean your bathroom.
When To See a Doctor?
Any changes in your stools are not normal. Be it the color, smell, or texture, it can be a sign of something serious. If you notice any of the below signs, consult your doctor immediately.
- Persistent odor despite dietary changes
- Changes in bowel habits like gas, diarrhea, or constipation
- Persistent abdominal pain
- Blood in your stool
- Presence of an underlying health condition related to your digestive system or metabolism.
If you're not consuming any edibles or eating different foods than usual and still notice your poop has a weed-like odor out of nowhere, visit the nearest healthcare clinic. Also, before heading to your doctor, list down and examine your current diet, medications, and risks for getting a poop infection.
They will test your poop and urine and suggest medicines accordingly. There's nothing to feel embarrassed about. Doctors will make sure everything is okay.
The Bottom Line
So, why does my poop smell like weed? The answer is very clear from this blog. As we explained, the most common reason is weed consumption.
If you consume or smoke cannabis, there's nothing to worry about. Your body is just using defecation as a way to get rid of the THC in your system. The same smell may also be present in sweat through your armpits.
But, if you're not a stoner or have never smoked, the reasons could be diet, gut microbiota, metabolism, or specific medications. In any case, schedule an appointment with your doctor and get it checked out as early as possible.
If the weed-like odor persists or is accompanied by concerned symptoms, contact a healthcare expert. Meanwhile, try to maintain a healthy and balanced lifestyle, which includes a well-balanced diet and plenty of water.
This will definitely improve your digestive health and reduce any strange odors linked with your bowel movements.
1. Why does my poop smell skunky?
Ans: Your poops may smell skunky because of your diet and bacteria. Foods high in sulfur, like cruciferous veggies, and difficulty absorbing nutrients can make your poop smell super-stinky. Sometimes, it could be because of bacterial or viral infections like Salmonella.
2. What does it mean when you smell like weed?
Ans: The smell of weed usually comes from terpenes. These terpenes are stored in fat cells, which are broken down and excreted through the armpit, feces, and groin during excitement.
3. Why does my poop smell like cigarette smoke?
Ans: Smoking cigarettes can harm your digestive system, affecting the GI tract. The smell of the poop could be due to gastrointestinal (GI) issues that come from smoking.
4. What does poop smell like with liver disease?
Ans: If your poops smell like ammonia or sulfur accompanied by a clay color, it's a sign of liver disease.
5. Why does my poop smell like weed when I don't smoke?