Working Out May Lead to Bad Breath

Woman practicing yoga

We all know that working out helps us stay healthy, toned and decreases the chance of illnesses. However, researchers at Tel Aviv University found that obesity and not exercising leads to bad breath. According to Men's Fitness, the more overweight a person is, the worse their breath tends to be because it is common for these people to have a poor diet filled with sugar and other substances that lead to bad breath. Although there isn’t currently scientific evidence to back these suggestions up, experts believe there is likely a correlation.

However, other studies have shown that exercise can be a cause of bad breath as well!

What to do? If exercising causes bad breath, but not exercising ultimately leads to bad breath, it may seem like a double-edged sword. However, there is a solution: drink lots and lots of water. The reason why a lot of people suffer from stinky breath while working out is because they become dehydrated, causing the mouth to dry up. When your mouth isn’t moist, it tends to cause foul breath. Some people often breathe through their mouths while working out, which will immediately lead to a dry mouth and bad breath. There are ways to kick this nasty problem without having to chomp on gum and breath mints over and over.

Before hitting the gym, use an oxygenating mouthwash to get rid of any bacteria that may be in the mouth. Stay away from any mouthwash that has alcohol in it, because it may be causing more harm than good. Since alcohol causes the mouth to dry up, an SLS-free solution won’t cause this problem. Also, make sure you are well-hydrated and equipped with a bottle of water when you’re at the gym. Not only is it important to slurp up water while working out because your body is constantly sweating, this will keep the mouth hydrated as well, and therefore prevent smelly breath.

Make sure to brush your teeth twice a day, and scrape your tongue to get rid of bacteria. Keeping the mouth fresh and clean can be best achieved by using an electric toothbrush.

"First, because many electric toothbrushes have timers on them and the majority of people do not brush their teeth for the right length of time,” dentist Tina Frangella told WebMD. “And secondly, because electric toothbrushes distribute a uniform motion, which I find helps remove plaque more efficiently than when my patients use manual toothbrushes."

If you are experiencing extra bad breath when you are working out, there are things that you can do in your everyday life to combat this. For example, lower your intake of sugar. Sugar is bacteria’s favorite food group, and dines on sweetness in the back of your mouth, creating more bacteria and thus smelly breath. If you find a cookie or piece of candy irresistible, make sure to drink some water afterwards to wash down the sugar. It can also be helpful to use mouthwash or brush your teeth shortly after indulging.

Similarly, a low-carb diet could be causing bad breath. Many people who are looking to lose weight will cut out or minimize their carbohydrate intake, but this causes the mouth to use other fats and proteins as the body’s main source of energy and certain chemicals are released. If you are trying to shed pounds, make sure to drink plenty of water to dilute the chemicals causing bad breath.

Keeping breath lozenges that prompt saliva on hand to also help prevent dry mouth and smelly breath at the gym. If you have to resort to gum, make sure that it is sugar-free because sugary gums will just lead to more bad breath. Make sure to keep up on proper oral hygiene everyday, as it will help target bacteria in the mouth and help prevent embarrassing odors.

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