What's up with smelling toast?

So, all I can find about ‘phantom’ toast aroma (smelling toast or burning toast when there isn’t any around) is that it is a sign of impending stroke or heart attack…

well…I’ve been smelling toast for ages (just had an ‘episode’ of it the other night - laying in bed around midnight or so, and BAM! scent of toast pervades my nostrils) and as far as I know, no heart attacks or strokes - I’m alive, and have all my mental faculties

I’ve been wondering about this for years, and periodically re-visit the subject via the inter-web…my boyfriend thinks I’m crazy, 'cause he never smells it…

anyone got an answer?

(my apologies if this has been debated and answered previously)

Maybe you just need some toast?

I’ve read that some Brain Tumors can cause phantom smells and tastes.

Phantom smells can also be part of the aura one gets just before a mirgraine.
Burnt toast is a common odor experienced, and I sometimes get that one, but if I get hit with a migraine during the day (as opposed to waking up with one), I usually smell burned meat. It smells like a well-charred hamburger.

Interesting…I get migraines (triggered by nitrates in food) but there’s never been any correlation between them and the toast smell…

[Canadian joke] You’re about to have a seizure. [/canadian joke]

It’s not a toomuh!

I get phantom smells and tastes sometimes before migraines- usually they are sweet tastes and smells- mango, chocolate syrup, etc. Not with every migraine though.

It is possible to get the weird symptoms of a migraine (auras, speech problems, light sensitivity, basically anything) without getting the pain. There’s a special name for that, but I don’t remember what it is. Maybe that’s what’s going on?


I smell diesel exhaust that isn’t there when I have migraines. I first noticed this about 15yrs ago. I get the same phenomenon when I take acetominophen, but I usually take that for headaches so it may be a chicken/egg situation.

If that makes you crazy, then at least you’re not alone.

Does it happen at various locations, or only at home? If it’s only as home, perhaps some food crumbs have found their way onto a warm machine part. The refrigerator coils come to mind, but it could also happen through heating/cooling ducts. Does it happen when the clothes dryer is on? Some colognes contain foody notes, such as vanilla. Some scented candles, even when unlit, give off aromas. There’s one on a shelf in this room that claims to smell like pumpkin pie.

These are only a few possibilities. Many people even carry a harmless fungus behind the ears that smells like a fruit (I can’t remember which one, but if you have it, a finger rubbed behind the ear will smell like that fruit.

Or, you could be crazy, which is not such a bad thing. :wink:

I’ve noticed that sometimes when a smell gets faint, it can smell like some totally unrelated thing. For example, when I brew coffee in my kitchen at home, when it just starts to waft into my den, it smells like fish. Once it gets a little stronger, then it turns into coffee smell.

Considering this, it could almost be anything that you commonly have in your home, that only smells like toast when the smell is faint.

Damn you! You beat me to it!

I actually found the commercial on YouTube, though; http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=R5HO44sFRFI

Dr. Penfield? I thought Dave Coulier was the greatest Canadian alive.

It’s a very lively debate, actually. It had a large part to play in the Liberal spending scandal, and fears over more constitution talks revolve around whether or not amendments to the constitution would even be discussed, considering that the major political parties cannot even agree on this one point. Several people are killed in bar fights every year; it’s nearly as divisive as the Québec sovereignty movement!