8 Foods That Can Cause Bad Breath

Nobody wants to be the person with bad breath. Unfortunately, almost everyone experiences it at some point, thanks to eating certain foods. Sure – you can always swivel some mouthwash to try and eliminate the smell, but usually, the damage goes beyond that! 

While it doesn’t make sense to avoid these foods forever, if you have an upcoming date, it’s probably best to keep the following eight foods that can cause bad breath off the menu. 

1: Garlic

Garlic is one of the most well-known foods that cause bad breath. Usually, the more potent the garlic is, the smellier your breath becomes. It’s thought that the reason behind this is the sulfur-containing compounds. After eating a garlic-heavy dish, you might notice your breath smelling like garlic for hours. 

2: Citrus Fruits

You might enjoy citrus fruits as part of a healthy diet, but beware that acidic foods like this can cause bad breath! This is particularly true in people prone to acid reflux, as the increase in acid can cause an unpleasant smell from the back of your throat. Having a mouth rinsed with mouthwash can help with this. 

3: Onions

Most people know that onions cause bad breath, but they are still worth mentioning! Onions can be found in many dishes, including soups, pasta, curries, casseroles, and many more, making them a big offender when it comes to bad breath! The reason onions cause bath breath is similar to garlic – the presence of sulfur-containing chemicals. Swish with a high-quality mouthwash to reduce the risk of bad breath after eating onion. 

4: Tinned Tuna

Eating tuna from a can makes a quick and tasty lunch or dinner. However, be aware that you might have some stinky breath following it! This is because fish within a can have already started oxidizing, and when this oxidized fish enters your mouth, it creates an unpleasant smell. Plus, fish generally contains high amino acids, which can also contribute to bad breath. It’s up to you whether it’s worth it or not! 

5: Coffee 

Everyone has smelt coffee breath on someone before. Unfortunately, it doesn’t have the same fresh coffee scent that comes off a freshly brewed cup of joe. Instead, it smells stale and unpleasant. 

So, why does coffee cause bad breath? The presence of sulfur (which is responsible for foul rotten egg smells!). When consumed, these cause compounds create bad breath. So, after having your much-needed coffee in the morning, don’t forget to brush your teeth and tongue thoroughly. Also, follow up with mouthwash! 

6: Alcohol

If you’ve ever had a heavy night drinking alcohol, you’ll know that it causes an unpleasant feeling in the mouth the next day. It’s not just a hangover you have to battle – you also have to deal with bad breath. One reason is acid reflux which commonly occurs after drinking alcohol. Another is that drinking alcohol dries out the mouth as it reduces saliva production, which can also lead to poor-smelling breath.  

7: Tomatoes 

Bacteria love acidic food, which is why even tomatoes can cause bad breath! Yes – whether you’re eating them as part of a salad or in a pasta sauce, you may notice a slightly funky smell after consuming them. Drinking water can help keep the bacteria in check. 

8: Spicy Food

You might love that spicy Indian dish you’ve mastered or the mouth-watering enchiladas you get from your favorite restaurant. However, be aware that consuming spicy foods can lead to bad breath. The reason? The chemical compounds in spicy foods enter your bloodstream, causing you to smell a little funkier than usual all around! 

Tips for Treating Bad Breath Caused by Food

All of the above eight foods contribute to bad breath, so avoid these foods if you want to stay smelling fresh. If it’s too late and you’ve already eaten one of these foods, there are some ways to try and combat the bad breath smell. First, try brushing your teeth and using a tongue scraper, being very thorough with the motions. You can also try using sugar-free gum to see if it masks the smell! 

More generally, it’s important to take good care of your oral health. Brushing twice daily, flossing, using mouthwash, and visiting a dentist Dr regularly will all play a crucial role in preventing bad breath. You might also consider eating foods and drinking beverages that fight bad breath, which include:

  • Green tea
  • Celery
  • Parsley
  • Apples
  • Carrots

Food Not the Issue? Other Causes of Bad Breath

There are more bad breath causes other than the foods listed above. 

  • Gum disease and gingivitis 

Gum disease and gingivitis refer to the inflammation of your gums. This can create a plaque build-up, contributing to bad breath. If you think you have gum disease or gingivitis, see your dentist. 

  • Cavities

Cavities can quickly lead to bad breath. It happens because odor causing bacteria get stuck within the cavity, eventually leading to decay. It’s crucial to see a dentist to fix a cavity; otherwise, it will likely only get worse. 

  • Smoking

Another common cause of bad breath is smoking due to the increase in sulfur compounds, which contributes to the development of halitosis. Plus, most people find the smell of stale tobacco unpleasant. 

Keep Bad Breath at Bay with a Good Dentist 

One of the best ways to reduce the risk of bad breath is by finding a good dentist like BAFdentistry and visiting regularly. That way, if any issues arise, such as gum disease or cavities, your dentist will spot them sooner rather than later. This will lead to faster treatment. 

Of course, avoiding the eight foods covered will also help you fight bad breath. Although, keep in mind some of these foods are still good for you overall, so you don’t have to avoid them forever! Maybe just keep a handy pack of sugar-free gum in your bag. Or, if you’re at home, quickly brush your teeth and use mouthwash after consuming them.