If there’s something women don’t talk about enough, it’s vagina odour.
To many, this is an awkward and intimate topic, especially if they are experiencing an unusual and unpleasant scent from their nether regions.
Changes in vaginal scent are actually very common and absolutely nothing to be ashamed of, but It’s important that you take it seriously, as these can signify a bigger health issue, such as an infection.
With that in mind, let’s discuss a lesser-talked-about scent; one that we have dubbed the onions-and-garlic aroma (or, OGA).
We find out what this is, how it occurs and whether you’ll have to spend the rest of your days smelling like day-old garlic bread (you don’t).
Why does your vagina smell like onions and garlic?
A natural reaction to OGA might be to think: ‘Is this because I eat too much onions and garlic?’ but that is not necessarily the case.
Eating certain foods can alter body scent (and vegetables are such a food) but what you’re smelling isn’t actually the vegetable in itself, and you’d have to eat a lot of onions and garlic to come close.
There are other, more likely factors to consider, Dr Larisa Corda, an obstetrician, gynaecologist and fertility expert tells us.
‘Every vagina has it’s own smell that varies woman to woman,’ Dr Corda.
‘This is due to the particular collection of bacteria, called the microflora, that exists there.
‘Quite often, the smell can resemble fermented food as the bacteria can be similar to that found in sourdough bread and yoghurt.
‘Other things such as vaginal bleeding, urine, sweat and even stress can also affect the scent down there too.’
Dr Corda explains that some minor changes in smell could just be due to your menstrual cycle and a change in hormone levels.
It’s when the smell turns ‘rotten and fishy’ that you should ask a medical professional for help, as this is usually a sign that something more sinister is at play.