Dental Blog

The Worst Foods for Your Breath

Tuesday, September 20, 2016

Bad breath is a common, yet unpleasant happening that everyone has experienced at least once. Unlike having a cavity or mouth sore, bad breath can directly affect the people around you and no one wants to be the person with offensive breath!

Practicing good oral health, like regular brushing, eating a healthy diet and chewing sugar free gum or mints all help to avoid being in this position. However, there are some other tips that can help curb bad breath, like knowing which foods to stay away from.

Some of the worst culprits for bad breath are: garlic, onions, coffee, alcohol, certain meats, like lamb, beef and other fatty meats. Many spicy foods, like curries and peppers, some seafood, especially tuna and cod. And lastly, cheese! Especially flavorful kinds like blue cheese.

Some of these are on the list because of the dehydrating factor. Beverages like coffee and alcohol can dehydrate your mouth, and reduced saliva production can mean bacteria and food particles can start to produce an odor. Others like garlic, onions and spicy foods will turn your breath because of the sulfur compounds, which are absorbed into the blood stream. These are also the foods that can make bad breath linger the longest.

To battle bad breath after eating any of the above foods, try drinking lots of water to both stimulate saliva production and help to rinse away lingering bacteria or food that’s causing the smell. Having sugar free gum or mints on hand is always a good way to again increase saliva production, but also cancel out the unwanted odors. Other tips for post meal breath control are eating fruits, vegetables or spices like parsley to neutralize the smell.