Garlic and onions add an unusual taste to our dishes, an amazing aroma and also have a number of impressive health bonuses. But unfortunately, both vegetables can cause very bad breath, also known as halitosis and especially if eaten fresh.
Why does this smell occur? The reason – sulphur-containing chemical substances, that neither peppermint gum nor a toothbrush can deal with. Among them, for example, is allicin, which is released when garlic is exposed to air and crushed. Or allyl methyl sulfide, which appears when cutting onions and garlic and after consumption enters the bloodstream and is excreted through the lungs and pores.
Also – cysteine sulfoxide, which is responsible for bad breath. However, the strong and not very pleasant smell is not a reason to give up all the benefits that onions and garlic can have for the health of the body - especially if we know how to deal with it.
Water or milk
A glass or two of water is a great way to remove the smell of onions and garlic from your tongue. This stimulates the production of saliva, which, in turn, will help get rid of odor-causing bacteria in the mouth.
Another option is a glass of milk. Scientists say that milk and milk products have the ability to reduce the concentration of sulfur-containing compounds in the mouth, and full-fat dairy products do this many times better than low-fat ones.
Complete cleaning of the oral cavity and teeth
The bacteria that contribute to bad breath are usually found in dental plaque and below the gum line. So brushing your teeth immediately after eating - but certainly with a brush that can reach the farthest corners, will definitely not be superfluous. In addition, bacteria that have accumulated on the tongue can become the cause of bad breath. In such a case, dentists recommend using a brush with a special scraper for the tongue. To complete the cleaning completely, use dental floss as well.
Rinse your mouth with solutions
Mouthwash with a bright aroma - mint or oak bark, are able to hide the smell of garlic or onions when breathing. Note that some studies show the particular effectiveness of using a rinse solution containing chlorine dioxide in terms of removing plaque, bacteria and food particles.
Fruit, vegetables and herbs
Consuming water-rich foods immediately after eating is a great way to get rid of the intrusive smell of onions or garlic. Even if you don't get rid of the unpleasant smell, you will at least hide it. Best of all in this case are fresh vegetables and fruit.
One study found that eating a green apple or a few lettuce leaves after a meal containing garlic or onion significantly reduced bad breath.
Folk wisdom often advises us to chop garlic with a bunch of parsley - there is logic in this. The bright aroma of parsley (coriander or mint) is able to kill everything, cleans the palate, where bacteria that cause halitosis can hide.
Apple cider vinegar or green tea
There is evidence that a tablespoon of apple cider vinegar dissolved in a glass of warm water after a meal can also deal with bad breath. Before checking this method, it is advisable to consult your doctor – in case you have problems with heartburn. Otherwise, you will get rid of the smell of garlic in your mouth, but then you will need to see a gastroenterologist.
Here is the better option – cup of green tea. Studies show that green tea can eliminate odors no less than peppermint, chewing gum, or parsley oil products. Add to that, that green tea has additional benefits for the oral cavity: the catechins it contains remove plaque as effectively as an antiseptic mouthwash.
If the smell of garlic and onions doesn't bother you, we recommend trying one of our delicious recipes for:
- tripe soup;
- garlic soup;
- or potato salad with onions;