Apparently, water or $\ce{H2O}$ combines in some way with nitrogen (from the air or elsewhere?) to form ammonia, or $\ce{NH3}$. Where/how in the body is this $\ce{NH3}$ (or whatever nitrate) produced before it is excreted with urine?

  • 1
    $\begingroup$ When excess proteins in the body are broken down, urea is formed (nitrogen containing compound). This is excreted in urine and in sweat. $\endgroup$ Commented Sep 13, 2014 at 6:50

1 Answer 1


All animals (including humans) consume significant amount of proteins. Proteins consist of aminoacids, which include amine nitrogen. This nitrogen traces back to mineral fertilizers humans use in agriculture. As proteins in our bodies are destroyed, the waste is utilized, formine urea (carbamide), so ammonia didn't cause too much trouble. However, urea is slowly hydrolized in water back into ammonia, so old urine stinks of (among other things) ammonia.


Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service and acknowledge you have read our privacy policy.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.