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These 5 Foods Will Give You the WORST Body Odor

author image Hannah Hargrave
Hannah Hargrave is a British journalist, blogger and Livestrong.com contributor. She’s a mom of 2 & a big friend of fitness. Hannah has worked with the likes of Marie Claire, Us Weekly, People Magazine & Grazia & after 15-years of living in LA she’s recently returned to the UK. In addition to writing about celebrities, parenting, health & just about everything else, she also blogs about her amusing experiences of moving from Hollywood to the British countryside. www.hollywoodwife2countrylife.com

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These 5 Foods Will Give You the WORST Body Odor
The food you eat could be causing body odor. Photo Credit: stocksy/Jill Chen

You’ve tried every deodorant and soap to get your body odor under control, but you still have an unpleasant smell about you. It might be time to take a good look inside your fridge in order to get to the bottom of your BO problem. Strange as it may sound, a meal can make more than just your breath smell funky; there are actually some foods that can change your aroma too. From the spice that makes your sweat stink to the veggies that give you gas, these fabulous foods could be the real culprit behind your body-odor woes.

1. Cruciferous Vegetables
Foods like broccoli, cabbage and cauliflower release stinky sulfur. Photo Credit: canyonos/iStock/GettyImages

1 Cruciferous Vegetables

Cruciferous vegetables might be good for your gut, but they’re not so great for your body odor. Foods like broccoli, cabbage and cauliflower release stinky sulfur that can make its way to your sweat glands and cause body odor. On top of that, it also gives you unpleasant-smelling wind.

“These vegetables are double trouble for body odors,” nutritionist Shona Wilkinson confirms. “Not only are they sulfur rich and break down into mercaptan (a colorless gas with a disgusting smell), they also contain a type of fibre called raffinose. This fiber does not get broken down in the gut and serves as a fecal bulk and as a food source for beneficial bacteria.” The result? Smelly gas production from bacterial fermentation.

2. Red Meat
Red meat is harder to digest, and the residue it leaves behind in the digestive tract putrefies. Photo Credit: yulka3ice/iStock/GettyImages

2 Red Meat

Opting for a vegetarian diet could have a surprising impact on your body odor. A 2006 study published in Chemical Senses determined that men on a meatless diet smelled considerably more pleasant than those who indulged in red meat. Women had to rate the attractiveness of the perspiration samples, and meat-free sweat was the overwhelming winner. The likely reason behind this is because red meat is harder to digest. The residue it leaves behind in the digestive tract putrefies, eventually resulting in bad odors and toxins that are released through sweat.

3. Fenugreek
Fenugreek can make you smell of maple syrup. Photo Credit: Andrii Pohranychnyi/iStock/GettyImages

3 Fenugreek

Fenugreek has been proven to have a multitude of health benefits, including lowering blood sugar and lipids. Unfortunately, those benefits can come at a pungent price. The plant, whose fragrant seeds and leaves are often used in cooking and to make medicine, has a certain stench about it that is often compared to that of maple syrup.

“Because sotolon, the component responsible for this smell, passes through the body unchanged, it is eliminated in sweat and urine,” explains Wilkinson. “Sotolon is actually also found in maple syrup and aged rum.” Wilkinson says the only way to get rid of the smell is to stop taking fenugreek.

4. Fish
People with fish odor syndrome should avoid seafood and choline-rich food. Photo Credit: elena_hramowa/iStock/GettyImages

4 Fish

Fish is normally one of the first foods that springs to mind when you think about a healthy diet because of all those heart-healthy omega-3 fatty acids. But when it comes to body odor, some folks have to steer clear of seafood. Wilkinson explains that seafood, along with several other foods rich in the essential vitamin choline — such as cow milk, eggs, beans, chocolate and peanuts — can be very problematic for a few unfortunate souls who have a condition called trimethylaminuria (aka fish odor syndrome, or TMAU). “This syndrome occurs in people who have a genetic inability to break down choline, resulting in a strong fishy odor,” the nutritionist explains. “To treat it, they must avoid all of these foods.”

5. Coffee
Caffeine activates your sweat glands. Photo Credit: LIVESTRONG.com/Scott Clark Photo

5 Coffee

This news literally stinks: Your beloved morning coffee doesn’t just make your breath smell, it can make your armpits whiff too. Studies have shown that the caffeine in coffee activates your sweat glands and causes excessive perspiration and, in turn, body odor. Switching to decaf coffee or less-caffeinated tea could help your perspiration problem. If decreasing your caffeine intake doesn’t make you smell less, then cutting out caffeine completely might be the only option you have.

What Do YOU Think?
Have you suffered from foul-smelling body odor? Photo Credit: Astarot/iStock/GettyImages

What Do YOU Think?

Have you suffered from foul-smelling body odor? Have you ever tried to lessen it by changing your diet? Let us know in the comments section below!

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