Health authorities in the UK have stated that extreme celebrity diets may not only be bad for the body but also for the breath. According to the British Dietetic Association (BDA), reducing your caloric intake to a regimen based solely on protein, cabbage or even baby food can give your breath a tinge of halitosis.
As reported by Wales Online, the BDA recently released its annual list of the five “worst” celebrity diets. Most entries facilitate weight loss by restricting calories or limiting daily intake to one or two food groups – or even just one or two foods.
Avoiding food groups, especially fruits and vegetables, can lead to serious health problems, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
The Dukans diet, which relies heavily and at times exclusively on protein, ranks as one of the health organization’s worst offenders, not least because it can cause offensive breath
Consuming almost nothing besides meat and eggs may cause quite distinct halitosis, which can originate in the mouth and the lungs.
When fed protein but no carbohydrates, the body gradually shifts into ketosis, a condition in which fat cells are converted into energy. While it can lead to rapid weight reduction, the BDA said that there is no scientific evidence that it is safe or sustainable. Likewise, ketosis can make your breath funky.
Ketosis and a more extreme, related condition, ketoacidosis, allow compounds called ketones to build up in the blood. These may be released into the air of the lungs and, from there, out of the mouth and into the nostrils of unsuspecting friends and co-workers.
Setting aside ketosis, the Dukans diet may cause bad breath simply by giving oral bacteria something to feed on. Consuming thick, savory foods like meats, cheeses and eggs can leave a coating of protein on the tongue and teeth. Microorganisms in the mouth quickly go to work on these food particles, feeding on them and releasing sulfuric compounds as a byproduct of their digestion.
Volatile sulfur compounds are largely responsible for the odor of halitosis. Hydrogen sulfide, cadaverine and skatole – all of which may be produced by oral bacteria – smell like rotten eggs, decaying meat and manure, respectively.
The BDA listed other, similarly reductive regimens like the cabbage soup and baby food diets, each of which can cause bad breath either by depositing smelly food particles in the mouth or by changing the body’s metabolism.
Avoiding bad breath may be as simple as eating moderate portions taken from all five food groups, brushing regularly and rinsing with a specialty breath freshening product.