10 Foods That Cause Or Prevent Bad Breath


If you are one of the 90 million Americans suffering from bad breath, or “halitosis,”  don’t be so “down in the breath.” Along with maintaining adequate dental hygiene, you can resolve embarrassing breath odor by managing the type of food you eat. Many of the external and internal factors that contribute to halitosis can be manipulated by certain foods, giving all the bad breath sufferers and the innocent bystanders, a chance at redemption.

Best Foods for your Breath


Consuming parsley is a world renown method of treating, and even eliminating bad breath. Its rich green color is an indication of the photosynthesis-involved companion: chlorophyll. Chlorophyll containing foods are great for treating breath odor because chlorophyll embodies antibacterial and antifungal properties. The sulfur compounds that cause halitosis are caused by different strains of bacteria that multiply by dining on the food crumbs in your mouth. The crisp and refreshing flavor of parley also makes it a natural antiperspirant.

Green tea

Green tea contains a powerful antioxidant called catechin. A study administered in Technion- Israel Institute of Technology found that the polyphenol antioxidants in green tea inhibits bacterial growth. This potent antioxidant also protects against dental decay and oral cancer.


Biting into an apple is a great way to push plaque out of your teeth, making apples a great natural deodorizer. Apples also help with the production of saliva. This is important for fighting halitosis because dry mouth is a common cause of bad breath. Saliva purifies your mouth from unwanted debris that can cause odor.

Probiotic Yogurt

Probiotic yogurt is well known for its ability to produce healthy bacteria in your gut. Healthy gut bacteria can diminish bad breath by lowering the amount of sulfur produced in your digestive system. Sulfur compounds produced in your digestive system can cause bad breath odor by transferring these potent compounds into your lungs.


The vitamin C provided by oranges is a great natural remedy for breath odor. Oranges help promote an acidic environment in your mouth, making it difficult for bacteria to thrive. These benefits are favorable for anyone suffering from bad breath, gum disease or gingivitis. Orange-infused water can further enhance these benefits by keeping you hydrated.

Worst Foods for your Breath


Foods that have a naturally strong-smelling odor can cause bad breath because of their high sulfuric composition. Onions themselves emit these compounds through the process of both chewing and digestion. This means that eating onions and other pungent-smelling foods on a regular basis can wreak havoc on your breath.


Bacteria thrives in sugar. The excess bacteria that cultivates in your mouth after eating a boatload of sugar makes candy a foe to halitosis sufferers. This list includes processed sugary goods, such as candy, soda, and surprisingly, breath mints. Regularly consuming these foods will result in strong and consistent breath odor.

Canned tuna

Seafood naturally causes bad breath as it starts to oxidize and create oxygen-loving (anaerobic) bacteria. Specifically speaking, canned tuna intensifies this oxidation effect because of the metallic can it’s stored in. If you plan on eating a tuna fish sandwich for lunch, be sure to keep your toothbrush and some sugar-free gum on hand.


Like onions, garlic is high in sulfuric compounds, making it another culprit for foul-smelling breath. The specific type of sulfur that makes up garlic- allyl methyl sulfide- takes garlic a notch above onions by passing from your bloodstream and into your lungs. Garlic odor can be emitted from both your pores and breath, making it a double threat to bad breath sufferers.


Mouth bacteria loves dry environments. Caffeine is a natural diuretic, meaning it dehydrates your body from. This creates an optimal environment for bacteria to thrive in. Many coffee drinkers also add sweet creamers and sugar into their coffee, which exacerbates these effects. If morning coffee is a staple in your daily routine, make sure to drink an extra cup of water for every cup of coffee you drink. Another pro tip is to drink your coffee black, or with sugar-free creamer.

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