- The Cure For Bad Breath May Be Right Inside Your Fridge
- Foods That Mask Bad Breath
- Bad-Breath Busters
- More Ways to Mask Bad Breath
- Practice Good Dental Hygiene
- Munch on these 10 foods to beat bad breath.
- Transform your smile.
- 1. Brush and Floss Your Teeth on the Regular
- 2. Drink More Agua
- 3. Hop on the Oil-Pulling Trend
- 4. Munch on Crunchy Fruits and Veggies
- 5. Sweeten Up with Cinnamon
- 6. Chew on Herbs
- 7. Suck on Fennel Seeds
- 8. Take a Shot of Apple Cider Vinegar
- 9. Clean Your Tongue
- Green Tea
- 6 surprising things that cause bad breath
- 8 Surprising Foods That Can Cause Bad Breath
- 1. Citrus Fruits
- 2. Protein
- 3. Canned Fish
- 4. Cheese
- 5. Pasta Sauce
- 6. Peanut Butter
- 7. Horseradish
- 8. Coffee
- Foods that Cause Bad Breath: How to Battle Bad Breath
- Top ten foods that promote fresh breath
- 1. Apples
- 2. Fresh herbs
- 3. Ginger
- 4. Green tea
- 5. Water
- 6. Vitamin C
- 7. Natural yogurt
- 8. Milk
- 9. Fennel seeds
- 10. Cinnamon
- Top 5 Foods That Cause Bad Breath
The Cure For Bad Breath May Be Right Inside Your Fridge
Photo: Getty Images
Everyone has bad breath at some point, but sometimes it just seems impossible to shake. You brush your teeth, pop some gum, and swish some mouthwash, but it inevitably returns. We turned to the pages of Mayo Clinic’s Book of Home Remedies to find exactly what foods cause bad breath, and how to cure it for good.
Although the unpleasant odor can come from your stomach, it’s most likely coming from within your mouth. When we eat food, bacteria breaks down the particles between our teeth and can cause foul breath. Other causes could be dry mouth or a more severe health condition if the smelly symptoms are super common for you. But, what’s most likely the root of your occasional bad breath are the foods you’re consuming. Foods with strong oils, garlic, onion, or hot peppers tend to linger in your mouth for long periods of time.
One surprising treatment for bad breath is likely sitting in your fridge right now—parsley. Though there’s no real science behind it, it’s believed that the strong, herbaceous nature of fresh parsley acts as a deodorizer. In addition, parsley is very high in chlorophyll (the stuff responsible for the bright green color) and chlorophyll is thought to have antibacterial properties.
Does chewing on the potent herb sound like the last thing you want to do? If you commonly experience bad breath and still want to try the benefits of parsley, you can snag parsley pills or chlorophyll pills. Of course, the only thing we know scientifically helps keep bad breath away is ensuring that you floss and brush your teeth/tongue at least twice a day.
Foods That Mask Bad Breath
Maybe you shouldn’t have had those raw onions with your hamburger at lunch, because now you’re faced with bad breath all afternoon. Many people find they can’t hide what they ate because certain foods linger in their systems, causing bad breath. Onions and garlic are probably the most common and most well-known instigators of bad breath, or halitosis, but there are others.
The issue with foods like onions and garlic is that they contain pungent oils that get carried through your bloodstream to your lungs. When you breathe out, the pungent leftovers are exhaled too.
Fortunately, just as eating certain foods can cause your breath to be unpleasant, other foods can help mask bad breath — for a time. “It will only be temporary,” notes Gerald P. Curatola, DDS, clinical associate professor at the New York University College of Dentistry and an oral health and wellness expert for The Dr. Oz Show. The following foods could provide relief for an hour or two, until you are able to attack the underlying cause — odor-producing bacteria in your mouth.
Foods that can help mask bad breath include:
- Parsley. Parsley is probably one of the most well-known ways to treat bad breath. Its oils are what do the trick. Likewise, spearmint and cinnamon can help mask bad breath. Some other herbs and spices that work for the same reason are coriander or cilantro, tarragon, eucalyptus, rosemary, and cardamom. ·
- Green tea. Green tea contains catechin, a powerful antioxidant that can fend off bacteria — remember, bacteria causes the unwanted odor. ·
- Yogurt. Some studies have shown that the live active cultures in yogurt help reduce bad breath, Dr. Curatola says. If the yogurt has probiotics (good bacteria), it can overpower the bad, foul-smelling bacteria. ·
- Apples and pears. “Fruits help with the production of saliva, which is essential to nourishing and rebalancing the natural oral ecology of the mouth,” Curatola says. ·
- Oranges, melons, and berries. These fruits in particular are rich in vitamin C. Vitamin C not only is helpful for keeping bacteria in check, but also helps combat gum diseases and gingivitis, which also can cause bad breath. ·
- Celery, carrots, and cucumbers. These crunchy munchies encourage the production of saliva, the bacteria rinse agent. ·
- Almonds and other nuts. They work like fruits and vegetables. “The fiber-rich content of fruits, vegetables, and nuts also acts like ‘tiny toothbrushes’ on teeth and has been shown to keep odor-causing bacteria from staining teeth,” Curatola says.
More Ways to Mask Bad Breath
Other ways to treat halitosis:
- Drink water. You want to keep your mouth moist. Water rinses out your mouth, and it’s generally good for your system.
- Chew sugarless gum. It not only masks the odor but also promotes the production of saliva, which helps rinse your mouth of harmful plaque and bacteria, explains Kimberly Harms, DDS, a dentist in Farmington, Minn., and a spokeswoman for the American Dental Association.
- Pop some breath mints. Like eating sprigs of parsley or other herbs, sucking on breath mints will mask the odor for at least a little while, Dr. Harms says.
Be sure the gum and mints you choose are sugarless. Sugar creates plaque, and you could be adding to the problem if you chew on sugary sweets or gum.
Practice Good Dental Hygiene
Food is really only a temporary solution to any bad breath problem. Most important, practice good oral hygiene. Brush your teeth for at least two minutes twice a day and floss daily. If bad breath is a problem, be sure to brush your tongue as well — that’s where odor-causing bacteria like to live, especially at night when your mouth is dry. Make certain to get regular dental checkups.
If bad breath is a persistent problem, talk with your doctor. It could be a sign of something other than the onions you had at lunch.
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Munch on these 10 foods to beat bad breath.
Afraid of morning breath or scaring someone off with the smell of your third cup of coffee? While good dental hygiene is the best way to prevent bad breath, the foods you put into your body can also impact how your mouth smells.
Most people know to avoid onions or garlic on a first date, but the odors in the food aren’t the culprits for bad breath. The bacteria in your mouth are to blame. As they break down leftover food particles and dead cells, they produce sulfur compounds responsible for bad breath. We’ve put together a few foods you can add to your diet to help fight bad breath.
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1. Raw fruits and veggies
Crisp fruits and veggies like celery, cucumbers, pears, and apples are a 2-in-1 fix for bad breath. Not only do they help your mouth produce saliva, which helps clean out the odor-producing bacteria, but the crunch also acts like a scrubber on your teeth, removing food particles so there’s less for the bacteria to break down.
2. Probiotic yogurt
Yogurt with probiotics contains good bacteria. Studies have shown that these good bacteria can lower the levels of sulfite compounds in your mouth that are responsible for bad breath. Just be sure to avoid yogurt with added sugars!
3. Parsley and basil
The polyphenols in these herbs act like antioxidants, helping break down the sulfur compounds in your mouth. Hungry for garlic? Combine it with parsley or basil to keep the smell from lingering long after dinner is over.
Studies have shown cherries remove the smell of methyl mercaptan, another one of the bad breath-causing gases released by bacteria in your mouth. Lettuce works the same way.
5. Green tea
This age-old beverage contains catechin, a natural antioxidant. The catechin in green tea can help fight the bacteria in your mouth that are causing bad breath in the first place.
6. Sugarless gum
Chewing sugarless gum loosens both food and dead cells from your teeth, which are what your mouth bacteria need to create bad breath. Without anything to digest, you’re in the clear. Look for gum sweetened with xylitol, a healthy sugar alternative that naturally inhibits mouth bacteria.
7. Melons and citrus
The vitamin C in melons and citrus fruits naturally turns your mouth into a place that’s not friendly to those bacteria that cause bad breath. Bad for the bacteria, good for you.
Chlorophyll’s not technically a food, but you can find this pigment in leafy green vegetables or in liquid or supplement form at your local health food store. Chlorophyll serves as a natural deodorizer, making it a perfect add to your diet if you’re looking to stop bad breath.
More commonly used to treat an upset stomach, ginger also neutralizes bad breath. Combine pressed ginger with lemon juice in warm water for an easy, at-home mouth rinse.
Perhaps the easiest and most readily available solution for bad breath, water often goes overlooked. But by keeping your mouth moist and rinsing particles from your teeth, you can keep bad bacteria at bay.
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We’ve all had a case (or two) of stinky breath—and there are plenty of possible reasons for it, from what you eat to the meds you take. But you shouldn’t just reach for any ol’ bottle of mouthwash to mask the issue. A lot of them are chock full of alcohol, which can actually cause bad breath.
Alcohol dries out your mouth and decreases your saliva flow—which allows for bacteria and bad breath to flourish, says Jonathan Levine, D.M.D., associate professor of NYU School of Dentistry.
So, what should you do to freshen up? Try one of these nine natural solutions for curbing a case of dragon breath.
1. Brush and Floss Your Teeth on the Regular
Yeah, we know you’ve heard this a hundred times. That’s because it’s important. Simply committing to this habit could have a major impact on your breath. “When you think about the health of the mouth, gingivitis—which is inflammation—is directly related to halitosis ,” says Levine. “The same bacteria that cause inflammation in the mouth produce the sulfur compound that causes bad breath.”
To stop plaque buildup and stinky breath, make sure you brush for two minutes twice a day—and floss once a day. The American Dental Association (ADA) recommends holding your toothbrush at a 45-degree angle to your gums and gently moving your brush back and forth using short strokes.
“Electric toothbrushes are helpful because they do a better job of removing plaque,” says Levine. Flossing helps nix plaque in hard-to-reach places, like between teeth and in the back of your mouth.
Related: 7 Possible Reasons Why You Have Dragon Breath
2. Drink More Agua
You know how we told you that a lack of saliva could create the perfect environment for bad bacteria to hang out? Upping your intake of H20 can also help take care of that. Water stimulates saliva production, so even if you think you’re drinking enough water, drink some more, says Levine.
There’s even an International Journal of Dental Hygiene study to prove that a glass of water in the morning can reduce bad breath—so keep a glass on your nightstand!
3. Hop on the Oil-Pulling Trend
Swap out your old alcohol-drenched mouthwash for an ingredient that’s probably already in your pantry: coconut oil. Swish one to two tablespoons of coconut oil in your mouth for about 15 minutes when you wake up, says Rebeccca Lee, R.N., a New York City-based nurse and creator of Remedies for Me. Just don’t swallow! When you’re done, spit the oil into the garbage, rinse your mouth with warm water, and brush your chompers as usual. Lee suggests doing this morning ritual—called ‘oil pulling’—two or three times a week.
Here’s how it works: “Coconut oil contains lauric acid and produces monolaurin when digested,” says Lee. Both lauric acid and monolaurin fight against harmful bacteria, viruses, and fungus, she explains. Coconut oil, FTW.
4. Munch on Crunchy Fruits and Veggies
Eating acidic foods—such as beef, cheese, and eggs—lowers the pH level of your mouth, which makes it easier for bacteria to thrive. And that can lead to some seriously rank odor. Levine says the best diet for your breath is one that includes lots of fruits and veggies, which have a higher pH and can keep your mouth balanced.
But it goes beyond that. Consider raw fruits and vegetables—like celery and cucumbers—nature’s toothbrush, says Lee. Their crunchy, fibrous nature helps to physically clean your teeth surfaces when you chew, she says.
5. Sweeten Up with Cinnamon
Have a sweet tooth? The essential oils in cinnamon can help give your breath a boost.
“The spice contains a component called aldehyde, which is great at keeping noxious bacteria at bay,” Lee says.
Research presented at the International Association for Dental Research found that the cinnamon gum worked way better at killing bacteria in the mouth than non-flavored gum, axing 40 percent of the types of bacteria related to bad breath. So the next time you buy a pack of gum, go for one naturally flavored with cinnamon.
6. Chew on Herbs
Nix artificially-flavored breath mints: Chomping on herbs like thyme or peppermint may have some positive effects on your breath. “Chewing on herbs stimulates bacteria-fighting saliva,” says Lee. Not to mention, these aromatic, flavorful plans also contain chlorophyll, which is a natural deodorizer, she says.
7. Suck on Fennel Seeds
Yet another ingredient that can put bad breath in its place? Fennel seeds! The phenolic compounds found in these seeds (and many other plants) help to fight bacteria and the bad breath that follows, says Lee. Plus, it also contains a compound called anethole, which relaxes the stomach, helping to prevent gas and odors that come from down under, too.
8. Take a Shot of Apple Cider Vinegar
Apple cider vinegar is a super-popular natural go-to for many reasons, bad breath relief being one of them. Halitosis is sometimes caused by GI issues like lactose intolerance or heartburn and ACV can support digestion, says Lee. Plus, the acetic acid that forms in the vinegar through the fermentation process—which gives apple cider vinegar its unique smell and taste—is another bacteria fighter, she says. Down a teaspoon or two of straight-up ACV once a day—or mix it into a mug of tea or glass of sparkling water.
9. Clean Your Tongue
That white coating you sometimes see on your tongue is actually the build-up of bad bacteria, says Levine. And as you’re now well aware, bacteria wreak havoc on your breath. Luckily, you can get rid of it pretty easily with a tongue scraper. Start at the back of your tongue and pull the tool forward, recommends the ADA. Then brush your teeth as usual!
Before we start, nothing can substitute good oral hygiene. You know the routine; brush twice a day, floss daily and never skip your six-month dental cleaning with your favorite Bonita Springs, FL dentist. Might sound boring, but maintaining good oral care will help ensure your teeth last a lifetime and help your co-worker from fleeing every time you need to talk to them! No one likes to have bad breath and no likes to be stuck in a conversation with someone that has bad breath. Unenjoyable for both parties. So outside of good hygiene, what foods naturally help combat halitosis?
Strawberries work double duty for bad breath. Bad breath can come from a dehydrated or dry mouth. Being high in water content, eating strawberries will give you a dose of hydration and help get saliva flowing. Strawberries are also exceptionally high in vitamin C. Odor causing bacteria have a very hard time surviving in a vitamin C rich environment. Additional fruits and vegetables high in vitamin C are broccoli, oranges and acerola cherries.
The polyphenols in parsley can help break down the stinky sulfur in our mouths. Are you craving garlic? Pair your garlic dish with parsley (basil is good too). Parsley and anything containing chlorophyll can help serve as a natural deodorizer to the lingering garlic breath.
Sometimes we’d rather sip on something than eat. Just as parsley is, green tea is high in polyphenols which help fight the growth of bacteria. The negative to green tea is that it can cause discoloration of your teeth. You can take green tea as a supplement, rinse with water after sipping or sip through a straw if this is of concern.
Ginger is given regularly with sushi and other Asians foods as a way to cleanse our palates. It’s great for detoxifying and cleaning our systems out. Ginger also helps neutralize the bacteria in our mouth that causes our bad breath. Enjoy ginger in tea, smoothies, grounded up or in oil form.
Bad breath mostly comes from the bacteria in our mouth. By eating odor neutralizing foods that combat the growth of bacteria we can help keep bad breath at bay. Also, all items listed above are packed with nutrients that are great for skin, oral and overall health. Reach out to s.m.i.l.e. dental for your spring dental cleaning and more tips on keeping your breath fresh!
6 surprising things that cause bad breath
According to Dr Harold Katz, dentist and A-lister breath guru (yes, that’s a thing), 70 per cent of people suffer from bad breath. Here are the culprits, how to spot your own halitosis by looking at your tongue plus exactly what to do
1. NOT-SO-SWEET SUGAR
The bacteria that causes bad breath use sugars as a super fuel. Sweets, mints, and chewing gum that contain sugar do not help to eliminate bad breath. In fact, the sugar in most breath mints actually causes the bad breath bacteria to become super active and create even more offensive, sulfur compounds. Dr Katz says: ‘If you need to use breath mints or chew gum, use products that contain Xylitol as a sweetening agent. It’s a natural product that actually prevents tooth decay.’
2. YOUR ATKINS HABIT
Dairy, meat and fish contain dense proteins used as a food source by the sulfur-producing bacteria which cause bad breath. Other common foods that cause bad breath due to their dense proteins are eggs, many nuts and seeds and also many types of beans and lentils. Dr Katz advises thoroughly cleaning your mouth after consuming protein foods.
3. THAT KETCHUP DOLLOP
Acids make bacteria reproduce much faster. So to slow down the production of bacteria that cause bad breath, it is helpful to avoid eating or drinking acidic foods or beverages. Common acidic beverages or foods that cause bad breath are tomato juice, all citrus juices, sodas, pasta sauce, ketchup, pickles, fatty meats,olives, butter and chocolate.
4. PEANUT BUTTER? NOOOOO!
We’re as sorry as you but according to Dr Katz, peanut butter is ‘so sticky that even saliva can’t wash it away. It lingers for hours.’ Traces of peanut butter remain in the mouth and oral cavity and are eaten up quickly by oral microbes. These microbes let off sulphurous molecules that really have a pungent odour. If you suffer from bad breath, it is best to avoid peanut butter.
5. YOUR FISH OIL PILLS
Supplements containing garlic oil are notorious for bad breath as they contain allyl methyl sulphide, a compound that gives garlic its strong smell. As your body digests a helping of garlic oil, this suffuses your blood, eventually escaping through your sweat glands and mucus membranes, which can cause bad breath AND body odour. Supplements such as Omega-3 fatty acids usually come from fish oil. The oils taken from fish tissue can also make your breath smell rotten
6. MILK…OF ALL THINGS!
Milk can contribute to bad breath due to lactose intolerance. Lactose intolerance is the body’s inability to digest the sugars from milk (or any dairy product). The enzymes or bacteria that break down lactose are not functioning properly. These enzymes will often release large quantities of gas during the digestive process, which in turn passes through the mouth, which can lead to bad breath, gas, cramps, diarrhoea and bloating.
GRAPHIC BUT USEFUL: Could your tongue be an indicator of bad breath?
The colour and state of your tongue can also be an indicator of bad breath so it’s a good idea to carefully check out your tongue in a mirror (we know this is gross – but it’s important)
A Coated Tongue – Slight fissure in the middle, coating turns yellow in the back showing an increase in the production of sulphur compounds Dry Coated Tongue – With random fissures White coating – With deep fissures Black Hair Tongue – Produced when some of the papillae (finger-like projections from the surface of the tongue) fail to fall off as they normally do. Geographic Tongue – Can be associated with stress, as well as physical stress and mouthwash containing alcohol.
4 home remedies you didn’t know could help your breath Brushing and flossing goers without saying but what slew can you do to prevent halitosis
1. Stimulate your salivary flow – Prevent dry mouth with chewing gum, lozenges, or mints that are sugar free. Look for Xylitol as a sweetener. In recent years, Xylitol has been shown to have anti-cavity properties and is a non-sucrose sweetener.
2. Eat fibrous fruits and vegetables– One of the best ways to remove bacteria in the mouth is to eat an apple a day. It helps moisten the mouth, too.
3. Take a dietary supplement– Take Vitamin C, Vitamin D, Vitamin E, and Vitamin B. These vitamins are effective at helping your body eliminate excess mucus and toxins naturally.
4. Brush your teeth occasionally with baking soda – The bacteria that cause bad breath thrive in an acidic oral environment. Brushing your teeth with baking soda helps neutralize excess acids found in the oral cavity.
August 6th is Fresh Breath Day (yes, that’s a thing too!)
Dr. Katz is a graduate of the UCLA School of Dentistry and holder of a separate degree in Bacteriology, also from UCLA. In the 1970s he established a thriving dental practice in Beverly Hills, California, minutes from bustling 20th Century Fox Studios. There, he perfected his dental techniques while working with some of Hollywood’s biggest stars. Visit therabreath.com.
8 Surprising Foods That Can Cause Bad Breath
It’s no secret that garlic and onions can lead to some pretty gnarly bad breath—but if you avoid these foods and your breath still stinks, it’s time to dig deeper into the sneaky saboteurs that could be causing it.
“Chronic bad breath can be very frustrating, even more so when you’re trying to fight it but can’t figure out what the culprit is,” says North Carolina-based dentist Bobbi Stanley, DDS. For some people, bad breath can be genetic, but for others, it could be a part of your daily routine that you’re not even realizing—like regularly eating certain foods that aren’t typically known for their breath-ruining skills.
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Below are eight foods that might be contributing to your bad breath, and easy fixes you can bust out when you’re nowhere near your toothbrush:
1. Citrus Fruits
Odor-causing bacteria love an acidic environment, so by eating a lot of citrus fruits, you’re basically inviting bad breath to stick around—especially if you’re prone to acid reflux, which can cause acids to flow back into your throat and cause a foul scent, says Stanley. Besides being more mindful of how often you eat acidic foods, consider popping a sugar-free candy post-citrus to freshen your breath. (Emphasis on sugar-free, as bacteria also love to feast on sugar.)
Eating an excessive amount of protein (say, while on a high-protein diet) can lead to bad breath, thanks to the body producing ammonia while breaking it down during the digestive process. The odor ends up escaping through your mouth, and is often said to smell similar to cat pee. (Gah!) “It’s important to keep track of how much protein you’re consuming and be careful not to overdo it,” says Julia Faigel, DDS, owner and clinical director of Dr. Dental. To help balance the scales when a toothbrush isn’t within reach, try noshing on foods that contain zinc (spinach, pumpkin seeds, chickpeas), which can help control plaque and reduce bad breath, says New York-based endodontist Adam S. Harwood, DMD.
3. Canned Fish
Unlike fresh fish, canned fish (like tuna and salmon) has had time to oxidize and react to other elements. “What we describe as ‘that fishy smell’ comes from a compound found in fish called trimethylamines,” says Harwood. “Unless they bind with some other liquid, they tend to linger in the mouth, giving off an unsavory smell.” (In a word, yuck.) Acidic juice from lemons, oranges, or vinegar can help these compounds bind with water, which allows you to eliminate them from your mouth by having a drink—but if these ingredients aren’t handy, chewing a stick of sugar-free gum can help reduce some of the offending particles, says Harwood.
“Most dairy products, including cheese, contain amino acids that react with your oral bacteria to produce sulfur compounds that can make your breath sour,” says Harwood. “As these bacteria feast on the milk solids, they create excess hydrogen sulphide.” The result? A mouth that smells like rotten eggs. Mouthwash won’t do much in this case, says Harwood, but brushing with a fluoridated toothpaste will help kill the offending bacteria that’s causing the stench. If you can’t brush right away, drinking water can help wash away the bacteria and particles that are camping out in your mouth, says Faigel. And being that floss is such a travel-friendly hygiene product, keep some thread on hand to quickly evict any dairy-themed particles that are hiding in the crevices of your teeth.
5. Pasta Sauce
Much like citrus fruits, the acidity from tomatoes can cause a buildup of acids in the mouth and foster the growth of bacteria, says Paul Sussman, DMD, cosmetic dentist at the Center for Cosmetic Dentistry in New York. These pesky bacteria can result in bad breath. When you’re having your next pasta with red sauce, keep a glass of water handy to sip during dinner to keep your mouth rinsed and the bacteria under control, says Sussman.
6. Peanut Butter
Peanut butter is an excellent source of protein—however, its paste-like consistency makes it difficult for saliva to break the proteins down once they’re in your mouth. And because of how sticky it is, peanut butter can stay in your mouth for hours between brushings. “Bacteria thrive on protein, so the abundance provided by peanut butter makes it a prime cause of bad breath,” says Illinois-based dentist Preet Sandhu, DDS. The next time a PB craving strikes, consider keeping a travel-sized oral rinse nearby, which can help remove remnants, reduce bacteria, and freshen breath all at once.
“Like most root vegetables, horseradish contains a chemical compound, isothiocynate, which sticks around well after the spread is consumed,” says Haywood. Because drinking water usually aggravates the situation and can cause discomfort, consuming mint may be the most effective way to combat this particular compound, he adds. After enjoying this potent condiment, drink mint tea or chew on some (sugarless) mint gum to help level things out until you meet up with your toothbrush.
Coffee has a drying effect on the mouth, which reduces saliva flow and allows foul-smelling bacteria to not only grow, but linger longer, says Harwood. The best way to balance the scales is to stay hydrated—say, for every cup of coffee you drink, guzzle a glass of H20. “The water acts as a constant cleansing agent and dissolves stinky substances, says Harwood, like those created by coffee
Not all breath checks end happily. But what do you do when you’re out to dinner without a stick of gum in sight? Here are a few odor fighting foods you never knew could take your bad breath away.
Eating certain foods can encourage your salivary glands to produce new, breath-freshening saliva.
Parsley: Before you put down your fork for good, pop a piece of parsley from your plate into your mouth. It’s a refreshing herb so your conversation won’t reflect the rest of your meal.
Oranges: Pick a dessert with fruit in it. Snacking on fresh, vitamin C-rich fruits are great for fighting odor producing bacteria that live in your mouth. They also protect against gum disease and gingivitis, both major causes of halitosis.
Apples: Biting into crunchy fruit like an apple can help cleanse plaque from your teeth – and the moistness produces clean saliva pretty quickly.
Yogurt: End your meal with frozen yogurt instead of ice cream. Yogurt has active bacteria that fight off bad ones in your mouth that cause bad breath.
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Foods that Cause Bad Breath: How to Battle Bad Breath
Bad breath doesn’t have to be a problem. There are many ways to combat it and still enjoy the foods you love. Here are some foods that cause bad breath, and how to control or prevent them from affecting your oral hygiene.
Garlic, Onions and Spicy Foods
If you’re going out for lunch or dinner with friends, be proactive about your breath. Carry a toothbrush and toothpaste in your handbag so that you can eat a spicy curry or garlic and onions, but help alleviate their affects by brushing afterwards. A quick trip to brush your teeth in the bathroom after your meal will help wash away some of the bad breath causing agents of these foods. An antimicrobial toothpaste, such as Colgate Total® Fresh Mint Stripe, not only leaves you with a clean mouth and fresher breath right away; it helps fight germs that lead to the bad breath, and keeps your mouth clean for up to 12 hours.
Coffee and Other Beverages
If you need a strong coffee to get started in the morning, follow it up with a glass or bottle of water. Caffeinated and alcoholic beverages can cause dry mouth; according to the Mayo Clinic, dry mouth produces bad breath by allowing bacteria to survive without the saliva washing it away. Regularly drinking water, particularly at meal times, can help wash this bacteria away and alleviate the bad breath associated with dry mouth.
Tuna and Fish
For many people, a tuna sandwich is the perfect lunch. They are filling, high in protein and delicious! If you can’t brush your teeth right after a tuna sandwich, pop a piece of sugar-free gum into your mouth to freshen up. Chewing gum helps stimulate saliva to wash away any food particles that might be stuck on your teeth. Another tip for fish lovers is to splash lemon or vinegar onto your fish before eating because it helps reduce the “fishy” odor. According to the American Society of Nutrition, this smell is caused by trimethylamine (TMA); acidic ingredients can help TMA bind to water, reducing its smell.
Don’t Forget the Basics
Remember, a good oral care routine can help you breath smell amazing, even if your diet is full of strongly scented foods. Brush at least twice a day and floss at least once daily to get rid of pieces of food that are stuck between your teeth and gums. Be thorough with your routine by brushing for a minimum of two minutes each time. Rinse with a freshening mouthwash such as Colgate® Total Advanced Pro-Shield™ after you brush and floss. It offers extra protection against the germs that remain after a meal.
You don’t have to give up foods that cause bad breath. Just know how to fight back against it so that your breath is ready for whatever is on the menu.
Top ten foods that promote fresh breath
Bad breath is caused by bacteria in the mouth that feed on food left behind. As they digest debris in the teeth, they give off a gas as a byproduct. It is this gas that causes the smell. There are some medical conditions that also cause bad breath, but we aren’t talking about those here. With a good oral hygiene regimen, regular visits to the dentist and using some of these foods in the diet, bad breath really could be a thing of the past.
An apple a day helps keep the dentist at bay as well as the doctor. Polyphenols in apples help break down bacteria in the mouth which has a positive effect on breath. They are also effective at cleaning the teeth and collecting debris that bacteria would otherwise feed on.
2. Fresh herbs
Herbs such as mint, parsley and basil all contain strong oils that have positive health benefits, including fighting the bacteria that cause bad breath. They taste pretty good too.
Ginger is widely known as beneficial to digestion but it also helps neutralize bad breath. A small piece of fresh ginger eaten after a meal not only tastes great but also helps keep bad breath at bay.
4. Green tea
Green tea is popular for all sorts of reasons and the ability to banish bad breath is one of them. Like apples, green tea contains polyphenols which are known to tackle mouth bacteria. There are also links to the prevention of tooth decay too.
One of the primary causes of bad breath is the lack of saliva in the mouth, or dry mouth. Having a glass of water after a meal has some very far reaching health benefits, the ability to fight bad breath is just one of them.
6. Vitamin C
Foods containing vitamin C such as broccoli and oranges as they create a hostile environment for bacteria within the mouth. A balance has to be struck to not make the mouth too acidic after eating, but an orange after a meal can certainly help.
7. Natural yogurt
Natural yoghurt not only lowers the pH level of the mouth after eating but has probiotic properties too. We know these are good for us as they help promote growth of ‘good’ bacteria which fights the bad, bacteria and breath!
Milk and certain dairy products are thought effective at fighting garlic breath after curries or strong garlic flavored food. Sulfur-like compounds within garlic are broken down by dairy, which is why this is on our list.
9. Fennel seeds
Fennel seeds are used in Asia to clean out the mouth, generate saliva and fight bad breath. The oil within the seeds has antibacterial properties which fight the bacteria that cause bad breath.
Cinnamon is widely used in both Eastern and Western cultures because of various health benefits and a delicious taste. It also has compounds that actively break down the gas that causes bad breath.
As holistic dentists, we believe in a complete approach to oral health and wellness. Introducing any of these foods into your diet is a good thing regardless of whether you’re fighting bad breath or not.
If you’re looking for a holistic dentist in New Jersey, contact Aesthetic Family Dentistry for a consultation. We are here to help!
Top 5 Foods That Cause Bad Breath
Brushing, flossing and rinsing are all great ways to keep your mouth healthy and clean. But for all your defensive maneuvering your breath will, from time to time, still get a little offensive. Not to worry though. Of all the things that cause bad breath, 80% are right under our noses—in the foods we eat. Here’s a look at some of the key offenders:
While it’s not surprising garlic would make the list, what might shock you is how garlic can leave its sulfuric mark on more than just your tongue. Garlic is also absorbed into your bloodstream, enabling a secondary wave of odor to make its way into your lungs, where it can freely escape through the mouth. Once absorbed, garlic then emits a bitter scent from your pores. None of this, however, should be reason to swear off garlic completely. Just try not to overdo it and, when you’re finished, flush your mouth of garlic residue by brushing and flossing. Also remember to rinse twice daily.
Similar to garlic, the odor of onions lingers long after you’ve finished eating them. That’s because they both contain sulfuric compounds that get absorbed into your bloodstream and return when you least expect it. Give yourself an extra layer of protection by brushing, flossing and rinsing.
Milk may do a body good, but it can dirty a mouth. That’s because naturally occurring bacteria from your tongue feeds on the amino acids in milk and cheeses, resulting in an odor that is foul and unattractive.
#4: Canned Tuna
No one is ever going to confuse the scent of fish with, say, honeysuckle. But something about canned tuna takes stink to a whole new level. Seafood naturally starts to become sour smelling and rank as it oxidizes, a process that is somehow exacerbated by the process of storing it in a dark, metallic can.
When the one thing that gives a plant its distinctive flavor is also its natural defense against hungry animals, you know the byproduct will linger after the plant has been digested. Such is the case with horseradish. The chemical compound isothiocynate is what allows this common root vegetable to give cocktail sauces, dressings and breath a unique flavor and smell.
Are you worried your friends and colleagues may be getting bowled over by your breath? Bad breath affects over half of us. It can be caused by a bunch of factors, including plaque, inflammation of the gums and decay in the mouth, smoking or even medication. It’s also often caused by something we’ve eaten. ‘We all know that garlic makes it worse,’ says Julie Linzel, a dental hygienist in Charlottetown.
Good oral hygiene, of course, is still the best way to keep your breath sweet. But some kinds of food and drink can actually fight bad breath. Go ahead and grab one of these five choices to freshen your breath between meals.
1. Say cheese (and yogurt)
‘A piece of cheese after you’ve eaten can neutralize some of those dietary acids, which may be stuck on your teeth and giving you that bad breath odour,’ says Linzel.
A serving of unsweetened yogurt can also help. A small Japanese study found that volunteers with halitosis who ate yogurt twice a day had reduced levels of hydrogen sulfide, a compound that can cause bad breath.
The bonus? Canadian dairy products are fortified with vitamin D. Research has shown that both vitamin D and calcium may benefit oral health.
2. Munch on stuff with crunch
Since it’s the soft and sticky foods that are most likely to be trapped on your teeth, causing bacteria buildup and bad odours, reach for a snack that’s neither. Apples, carrots and celery all scrub your teeth as you eat, helping to strip away those leftover bits of raisin Danish.
3. Have a cuppa
The polyphenols or compounds in black tea may help your breath in two ways: First, they prevent the growth of bacteria that can cause foul breath. Second, they decrease the bacteria’s production of stinky byproducts. Black tea has also been shown to help prevent tooth decay; so all in all, this steaming beverage makes for a good mouth freshener! One thing to beware: too much caffeine can dry out your mouth. Since that can also do a number on your breath, keep your tea intake to a moderate level, or go for decaf.
4. Sugarless candies and gum
Any snack that increases saliva flow in your mouth, like sugar-free candy or gum, will help reduce odour in your mouth, says Linzel. Wondering what flavour to opt for? Mint may temporarily mask a bad smell. Cinnamon, on the other hand, may actually help to stop it at the source. The plant essential oil that’s often used for flavouring cinnamon gums and candies, known as cinnamic aldehyde, can reduce odour-causing bacteria.
5. Wet your whistle with water
A dry mouth can make your breath pretty unbearable. In some ways, water acts like artificial saliva, since it can wash away those leftover bits of garlic bread. Keep a water bottle in your workspace’your colleagues will likely thank you for it.