Garlic breath is a common problem that affects many people. When you consume garlic, the compounds in the food break down in your digestive system and travel through your bloodstream to your lungs. This causes a strong odor to be emitted from your mouth when you exhale. Many people turn to mouthwash, like Listerine, to try and get rid of the garlic smell. But does Listerine really work?
The Science Behind Garlic Breath
Before we dive into whether Listerine can help with garlic breath, it’s important to understand why garlic causes bad breath in the first place. When garlic is digested, compounds called allyl methyl sulfide are released into the bloodstream. These compounds are then carried to the lungs where they are exhaled, creating the strong odor. Unfortunately, brushing your teeth or using mouthwash does not completely eliminate the odor because the compounds are also released through the pores in your skin.
How Listerine Can Help
While Listerine may not completely eliminate garlic breath, it can help to mask the odor. Listerine contains a high concentration of alcohol and essential oils that can help to kill bacteria in your mouth. This can help to temporarily reduce the odor caused by the garlic. However, it’s important to note that Listerine does not eliminate the compounds that are released through your pores, so you may still have some garlic breath even after using mouthwash.
Tips for Reducing Garlic Breath
While using Listerine can help to reduce garlic breath, there are other things you can do to minimize the odor. Here are some tips:
1. Chew Parsley
Parsley contains chlorophyll, which can help to neutralize the odor of garlic. Chewing on a sprig of parsley after eating garlic can help to freshen your breath.
2. Drink Green Tea
Green tea contains polyphenols, which can help to neutralize the odor of garlic. Drinking a cup of green tea after eating garlic can help to freshen your breath.
3. Brush Your Teeth and Tongue
Brushing your teeth and tongue can help to remove any food particles and bacteria that may be contributing to the odor of garlic. Be sure to brush for at least two minutes and use a tongue scraper to remove any residue from your tongue.
4. Drink Water
Drinking water can help to flush out any odor-causing compounds from your mouth and body. Be sure to drink plenty of water after eating garlic to help minimize the odor.
In conclusion, while Listerine may not completely eliminate garlic breath, it can help to reduce the odor by killing bacteria in your mouth. However, it’s important to remember that the compounds that cause garlic breath are also released through your pores, so you may still have some odor even after using mouthwash. To minimize the odor of garlic, try chewing parsley, drinking green tea, brushing your teeth and tongue, and drinking plenty of water.