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The fascinating science behind why most Koreans can't have body odour

Body odour is influenced by various factors, including genetics, diet, personal hygiene, and cultural practices.

Koreans' odourless elegance secret unveiled [Reddit]

While almost anyone can get body odour, there is a particular population that does not fall into this category - Koreans.

During the hot summer season, a lot of people, especially those who sweat a lot, are concerned about the body odour excreted from their sweaty armpits. But this is not an issue for people from Korea as they do not get body odour.

If you have been close to a Korean, you might have noticed their armpits almost never smells no matter how much physical activity they engage in. The reason for this is in their genes.

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First, it is important to understand how we get body odour.

When we produce sweat, this sweat contains salts, proteins, and other compounds in addition to water. Bacteria on our skin break down these compounds, and the breakdown leads to the release of smelly substances, hence body odour.

Our armpits and groin contain apocrine glands regulated by a gene called ABCC11 which makes them produce an even stronger odour.

Basically, the ABCC11 gene is responsible for armpit odour production. This gene is present in more than 80% of Europeans, Africans, and Latin Americans.

Koreans do not possess this gene according to research by the University of Bristol. Specifically, only 0.006% of Koreans have the ABCC11 gene which explains why they cannot have body odour.

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This means an average Korean can do physical activities where they sweat for hours and they would have no body odour. This also explains the rarity of deodorant in the Korean space as they focus more on perfumes.

This gene does not only affect body odour production as research also says that those who don't have the ABCC11 gene are more likely to get dry earwax than wet earwax.

I bet the next time you see a sweaty Korean, you'll understand better why they don't have any body odour.

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