Bacteria in the mouth left over from the food you eat can create unpleasant tastes, but you can fight this by removing the bacteria. Some foods, like onions and garlic, contain bad-tasting oils that are carried through your blood to your lungs. Over time, these oils produce smells in your lungs when you breathe out. Other foods have the opposite effect and help to stop these smells from forming. These foods are easy to include in your diet and are already popular for other reasons.
1. Spices and Herbs
Although chewing gum dates back to ancient Egyptians, some of the first breath freshening products originated with natural, herbal ingredients. The father of Western medicine, the Greek physician Hippocrates, created a mouth rinse using wine and herbs.
Any herb with a strong, aromatic flavor will work. Three plants commonly known for their strong taste are rosemary, mint, and thyme. Rosemary contains rosmarinic acid, which helps eliminate garlic breath. Try making tea by boiling the leaves to enjoy the flavor without eating them.
2. Fresh Fruits and Vegetables
Abrasive fibers act like a toothbrush to scrub food from the teeth and prevent cavities and gingivitis. Crunchy fruits and vegetables, like celery, kale, apples, and carrots, stimulate the production of saliva. They also make removing food particles from between the teeth and gums easier. High-fiber foods that are high in vitamin C will help fight bad breath by preventing the growth of bacteria in the mouth. Anyone familiar with pirates and vitamin C knows that it fights gum disease by preventing the growth of harmful bacteria in the mouth.
Recent studies show that eating three ounces of yogurt a day over six weeks reduces hydrogen sulfide (H2S) by 80%. Hydrogen sulfide is foul-smelling stuff. Over the course of six weeks, those who ate three ounces of yogurt each day had 80% less hydrogen sulfide in their systems. It is a great add-on to your arsenal if you want to fight bad breath because it offers multiple benefits.
The probiotics in yogurt break down proteins, meaning less food for bacteria to survive. The calcium in yogurt promotes strong teeth and bones, and yogurt is easier to digest than other dairy products.
Tea may technically not be food, but it can be used to fight bad breath the same way that foods can. Black and green tea both contain antioxidants that reduce odor-causing bacteria in the mouth. Black tea also contains polyphenols that prevent the formation of sulfur compounds in the mouth, which also lead to bad breath.
You can make your breath smell better by ensuring that you are adequately hydrated. Water naturally washes away food particles that cause bad breath. Bacteria live off leftover food, so simply rinsing your mouth after each meal will help minimize bad breath. Drink around two liters of water every day to help fight bad breath.
Fighting bad breath is a simple and effective way to improve your self-confidence. A quick brush and flossing of your teeth should be a part of your daily routine. Make sure to keep breath mints in your pocket or purse to immediately treat the moment that you feel your mouth starting to form odors.
The foods we mentioned above will reduce the amount of odor-causing bacteria in your mouth, but it may take some time for you to notice the effects. You may need to eat more of these foods for a few weeks to notice a difference.
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