5 Foods That Make Your Breath Stink

Learn the Foods That Give You Halitosis – and Why!

foods that make your breath stink

Some foods can make your breath really reek! In many cases, this can be a related to poor oral health, habits like smoking, or an issue within the body. However, in patients who can rule out all the aforementioned factors, it could just be the things you’re eating. Below, Dr. Acosta lists the five most common culprits for food-related halitosis so you can be sure to take precautions – like remembering to bring mouthwash or a toothbrush to help keep your mouth feeling and smelling fresh!

Garlic and Onions

These are possibly the most well known of the bad breath causing ingredients, and it is often warned to avoid. This is because they both contain sulfuric compounds that get absorbed into your bloodstream and then flow into your lungs or be released via your pores causing the smell to linger long after your meal. No wonder they say to stay away from garlic bread on a first date!

spongebob bad breath

Dairy Products

A diet with an adequate amount of calcium is necessary for strong, healthy teeth and bones, but sometimes dairy can cause the naturally occurring bacteria in your tongue to feed on the amino acids in milk and cheeses, producing a smell in an odor that can be pungent and unpleasant.

Coffee and Alcohol

These liquid culprits can also affect the way your breath smells for a couple reasons. For starters, these are drying agents, meaning that they inhibit the flow of saliva and thus create a dry mouth. Because salvia acts as a way to clear out the mouth and remove unwanted bacteria or food particles from between the teeth, a lack of it can create a prime-breeding place for harmful bacteria. Drinking water can help your mouth produce more salvia, which can help counter this if you truly can’t live without your morning coffee.

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Who knew your breath could be affected by one of the least unsuspecting food items: condiments. Particularly horseradish. This is because horseradish sauce is derived from a plant that produces isothiocynate – a natural chemical so odorous, even animals avoid it.


This may come as no surprise, but tuna is a particularly smelly fish. It does make for a delicious lunchtime snack, but tuna, particularly of the canned variety, has a very noticeable smell. This is because of the oxidization that commonly occurs during the canning process. Acidic additions can increase that smell. Chewing sugar-free gum after a tuna melt sandwich will not only help freshen your breath, but can also loosen lodged food remains and encourage saliva production.

Proactive Dental Health Services

A happy, healthy smile is our number one priority at Acosta Dental Arts, PA. The best way to ensure this is by following a dedicated daily brushing, flossing, and rinsing routine alongside regular dental cleanings. Maintaining good oral hygiene and a balanced diet can not only help reduce the risk of bad breath, but also help reduce your risk of gun disease and periodontitis. Contact our North Palm Beach office to schedule your Free Smile Assessment!

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