Get rid of garlic breath
SUMMARY: Garlic is a main offender of bad breath. Find out how to get rid of halitosis!
Posted: June 26, 2014
Crushed, raw, dried, or pureéd - no matter the form it comes in, garlic remains a top offender for bad breath.
Unlike most other foods that trigger halitosis, garlic causes foul breath that stems from the lungs, since its odor-producing sulfuric compounds are absorbed into the bloodstream. This makes it a bit trickier to combat the smell.
However, scientists have found foods that could eliminate the unpleasant odor. Published in the Journal of Food Science, the study by U.S. scientists claims that lemon juice, apples, parsley, spinach and green tea can help banish bad breath.
When you consume garlic, your body cannot break down allyl methyl sulfide, the compound in it, so it's released through breath and sweat. This is not the best way to make good impressions at a dinner party serving bruschetta and pasta or during romantic evening for two.
For the study, volunteers ate raw garlic and then had concentrations of the four bad-smelling compounds in their breath measured. They then consumed different foods to see which made a difference.
Of all the foods, raw apple was found to fight off garlic breath quite effectively. Study author Sheryl Barringer told the Kashmir Observer that this is what she reaches for after eating garlic. Barringer, of Ohio State University's department of food science and technology, claimed apples may help by "deodorizing" the enzymes in garlic. Apple for dessert, anyone?
All of the effective foods contain compounds called polyphenols, which break down the pungent compounds in garlic. The acidity of lemon juice was thought to help.
Interestingly, garlic is technically neither herb nor spice but a member of the same family as onions - which makes sense since onions are another breath killer. Sulfuric volatile compounds found in both foods are responsible for the awful odor.
Perhaps surprisingly, milk was also found to improve the smell. Full fat worked better than skim.
Barringer said, to reap the biggest benefits, combine these odor-defying foods with the garlic whenever possible. So, slice an apple into the garlicky dish or drink a glass of milk to complement the meal.
Even if these foods only mask the odor, there's still another solution. Banish bad breath by using a specialty tongue to clean out your the mouth. Then, gargle with an oxygenating, alcohol-free TheraBreath mouthwash and wrap things up by sucking a specially formulated, mouth-wetting lozenge. There you have it!