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Bad Breath: Good and Bad Foods

Bad Breath: Good and Bad Foods

Do you suffer from bad breath? You may want to check your diet. If your dental hygiene is good like brushing your teeth twice a day, flossing once a day, and cleaning your tongue, then your bad breath could be related to your diet. There are many types of foods that can cause you to have a bad breath for hours.

Here are some foods that can cause you bad breath:

Garlic and onions: Garlic and onions are on the top of the list when it comes to bad breath, because the sulfur compounds in onions and garlic remain in your mouth and are absorbed in the bloodstream and expelled when you exhale.

Alcohol and coffee: alcoholic drinks and coffee create a good environment for oral bacterial growth. They also allow bad smelling bacteria to remain longer by reducing the saliva flow because they have a drying effect.

Diet heavy in meat, dairy products, soda and orange juice are considered to be bad breath triggers but there is no scientific evidence to prove that.

Any food or drink might cause breath odor if it’s remained in the mouth. Brushing your tongue and mouth gets your good breath back.

Here are some Foods and Drinks That Make Your Breath Smell Good:

Water: This odorless fluid helps flush the bits of food bacteria from the mouth. It also promotes the production of saliva, which acts as a cleansing agent and dissolves stinky substances in drink and food.

Sugarless gum: Chewing gum loosens dead cells and food from the gums, teeth, tongue and promotes saliva production. Sugar-free gums sweetened with xylitol are mainly effective for fighting bad breath because xylitol inhibits mouth bacteria. Chew the xylitol-sweetened gum for at least five minutes after meals to get the full effect.

Fruits and vegetables: Foods rich in vitamin C, such as Broccoli and red bell pepper create an unfriendly environment for mouth bacteria. They also help in fighting bad breath when eaten raw, as crunchy produce of any kind is mechanically rough and helps in releasing trapped food particles.

Yogurt: sugar-free yogurt with probiotic lowers the levels of odor-causing sulfide compounds. To get the best effects, eat yogurt that supplies strains of lactobacilli bacteria and streptococci. Fortified yogurt is also great source of vitamin D, which helps in reducing the mouth bacteria

Spices and herbs: Parsley has a deodorizing effect in the mouth because it contains chlorophyll. Other plant products related to better breath include anise, cloves, and fennel seeds.

Christelle Bedrossian
Dietitian-Nutritionist
Beirut, Lebanon

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Christelle Bedrossian