Can garlic breath be beaten?


Hmm...shall or I shan't I ?

No matter how much you brush, swill and suck on the mints, why is it that garlic breath is with you for the whole day after?

What you are smelling is a collection of sulphur compounds that result from garlic being metabolised. Some of these compounds are present in your mouth as you are eating so a brisk bout of mouth swilling should do the trick, right?

Wrong! Because these smelly sulphur compounds are also absorbed into your bloodstream from your gut…and are exhaled from your lungs for many joyful hours afterwards. No amount of oral hygiene is going to help you now!

So what are your options for the morning after?

Scrub and swill

Having a nice clean mouth is still going to help…so a good tooth brushing and flossing session is the first thing to do. And why not give that tongue a bit of a brush while you are at it.

Mouthwashes are also a good idea….you can read more about which are the most effective. And of course, chewing gum.

There are also a number of “cures” for garlic breath…some of which may or may not be as effective as their proponents make out!

Fruit & veg

Apples are supposed to be good according to some articles, as is sucking on a lemon wedge(!). Leafy green vegetables may also help.

Some herbs may also be effective: chewing on parsley according to some sources. Some recipes include parsley as an ingredient when garlic is used.

Green tea

Green tea contains polyphenols which apparently can neutralize the sulphur compounds.

Drinking milk

This has been reported as an option…as has chewing on coffee beans. Although that would then presumably give you coffee breath as well!

Needless to say, the only way to beat it, is not to eat it…but life without garlic??

There are grand claims of the health benefits of garlic as a super food, including being able to lower blood pressure, lower cholesterol, even reduce the risk of cancer.

The NHS Choices website has a good summary of whether these claims stand up to scrutiny.

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