Battling bad breath caused by a new diet
SUMMARY: When changing your diet, most people don't think that it could affect their breath; however, some diets are linked to bad breath.
Posted: October 15, 2012
When changing your diet, most people don’t think that it could affect their breath; however, some diets are linked to bad breath. According to Fit Foodista, diets with increased or decreased levels of protein, fat, carbohydrates, or fiber could lead to stinky breath.
Low carb diets are known to cause a type of bad breath called ketone breath, or keto-breath. Chemicals called ketones are released in the breath when the body burns fat. If you are on a diet like Atkins or South Beach that includes a time period with no intake of carbohydrates, the body is burning fat to create energy. This process is known as ketosis and it increases the amount of water being used by the body, which decreases the amount of saliva. This leads to dehydration and thus bad breath. These diets also encourage the intake of increased amounts of protein. When the body burns protein, it produces ammonia, which also contributes to bad breath.
"Basically when you are on a low-carbohydrate diet, the key to success is breaking fat into ketones to create ketosis, and as ketones get into urine and saliva, it can cause horrible breath," Charles H. Perle, DMD, a general dentist and a spokesman for the Academy of General Dentistry, told WebMD.
Battling keto-breath can begin by drinking a lot of water to keep the mouth well hydrated. It is also important to brush the tongue when brushing your teeth, because most of the bacterial growth in a person’s mouth is at the back of the tongue. Eating a lot of vegetables, fruits and whole grains is also important in limiting major issues with keto-breath.
Using an oxygenating toothpaste and oral rinse will help combat these side effects of a diet. Some people also enjoy using fresh breath lozenges, which are specifically made to decrease dry mouth.