Bad Breath -- a 'dish' to be avoided

Taste and smell play a big role in our everyday lives, particularly when it comes to enjoying food. We even use them in analogies such as 'the smell of success' or a 'taste of paradise'.

Taste encompasses many things, ranging from how we class food, such as sweet or savory, to helping us ascertain if it may be bad to eat.  Smell has many roles too, and may play a part in stimulating our appetite.  

Enjoying food and drink that both smell and taste good can be a great pleasure. In the UK an estimated 23 million people now regularly eat curry,  with all its complex tastes and smells. Onions are a prime ingredient in many dishes while garlic has been cultivated for millenia and used as a medicine as well as a culinary addition.  Drinks can range from the aroma of freshly ground coffee to the lingering smell and taste of alcohol. 

It is perhaps not surprising that some foods and drinks may leave evidence of their consumption on our breath. When this happens foods such as garlic may provoke a response from others, who may try to avoid close contact, while the smell of alcohol may give possible information about our lifestyle. 

Bad breath brought about by consuming food or drink is usually temporary. By not eating or drinking them, the bad breath can be avoided and is helped with practicing good dental hygiene.  The smell of bad breath resulting from the consumption of such foods could cause embarrassment for the sufferer or even induce some to keep their distance for a little while. But imagine if an odour carried on the breath did not extinguish after a short period, that when some form of close proximity were offered it was perhaps declined or fleeting, or people stepped away when conversation began.  If an individual were unaware of the reason why others remained distant, it could be puzzling. If aware that the problem was breath malodour, this could extend to embarrassment or worse.

Halitosis, or bad breath, is a condition that affects up to one quarter of adults in this country on a regular basis.  Long time sufferers of halitosis may find the condition affects their social life, and may reveal itself in different levels of inhibition or even isolation.  

While bad breath can be caused by various underlying medical conditions, diseases and problems, it largely originates in the oral cavity with microbial degradation as the main cause. Malodorous gases known as volatile sulphur compounds (VSCs) are formed, and largely produced by oral bacteria breaking down food debris.  

For sufferers of this troublesome condition, combatting bad breath may make a difference not only to their breath, but to other aspects of their lives. One product that has been clinically proven to help in the fight against the symptoms of bad breath is CB12. The innovative mouthrinse neutralises the three VSCs that cause bad breath, rather than just masking the smell, and is effective for up to 12 hours. CB12 is also easy to use and while it does not cure halitosis, used regularly it can help to maintain fresh breath.

So while it may be said 'you can never have enough garlic' , bad breath is something most would certainly prefer to do without.


Pub Med Health. The U.S. National Library of Medicine. Informed Health online. Title: 'How our sense of taste works.' Author: Institute for Quality and Efficiency in Health Care (IQWiG). PubMed Health. Available at website address: accessed on 14th June 2014.

Fifth Sense Charity. At website accessed on 10th June 2014. Select tab for Tab for 'Smell Taste and Food. Select tab for 'Smell Taste and Flavour'.

The National Curry Week website accessed on 10th June 2014 at: Select National Curry Week link. Select Press Room link. Look Sept 2013 'Minister Pledges Support' ref 

Kew Royal botanic Gardens.Website accessed on 10th June. From home page select science and conservation tab. Select Plants and fungi tab. Search for garlic and choose allium sativum.-- web address.

NHS Choices website. Website address: . Choose Health A-Z tab. Select 'H'. Select Halitosis (Bad Breath). Select 'Causes of bad breath'. Accessed on 10th June 2014.

Dental Health Foundation Charity. Accessed website on 10th June 2014. Website address" Select 'Tell me about' tab. Select 'Caring for Teeth from menu. Select 'Bad Breath' from side menu. 'How can I tell if I have bad breath'.

NHS Choices website. Choose Health A-Z tab. Select 'H'. Select Halitosis (Bad Breath). Select Overview. Accessed on 10th June 2014. 

Findings, Diagnoses and Results of a Halitosis Clinic over a Seven Year Period. Zürcher, A., Filippi, A.  Schweiz Monatsschr Zahnmed. Vol. 122. 3/2012. 

Halitosis: the multidisciplinary approach. Curd, M.L., Bollen, Beikler, T., Int. Nournal of Oral Science (2012) 4, 55-63.

Morley Safer. Source"  New York Times archive. Article: In the kitchen with: Morley Safer; Serving Up Brouhahas And Garlic By Bryan Millerchester, Conn. Published: October 5, 1994. Access on 10th June 2014 at website:

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