Get a Little Closer… What Bad Breath Says About Your Health


Although a sensitive topic, bad breath should not be ignored and looked at as bad, or not important. It is necessary to deal with, as it not only affects the person with the symptoms, but also those around them. There is nothing worse than having people either step back, or sadly, away all together because of a nasty smell coming from your mouth. There could be serious underlying causes that should not be underestimated

There are many causes that could contribute to this problem. Often gum disease, referred to as gingivitis, is a large contributing factor. Treating the problem with an over the counter mouthwash is not recommended as the chemicals it contains are detrimental to healthy gut flora and in reality does absolutely nothing to treat the cause. The actual time that these products help mask bad odor is quite minimal anyway. The first thing that must happen is a visit to the periodontics to look at what can be done to better your oral health. Correct brushing along with flossing is crucial at least 3 times per day. I like to recommend adding liquid chlorophyll to your water bottle as it not only tastes good, but immediate alkalizes it, an internal deodorant so to speak. Chlorophyll is extremely energizing and may even help you increase your daily water intake. I have heard many dentists say that chlorophyll is good for the gum health!

Medication and anti-biotics may also contribute to foul breath. Sadly, it is a well-known side effect of many meds, but can also be a hint that you are not drinking enough water, or perhaps  an adjustment in meds may be needed. Speaking to your doctor about this is important. Never ignore signs of discomfort or change.

In my practice, I have experienced many bad breath cases coming from poor gut flora because of poor digestion. Eating too many processed foods, a lot of red meat, refined sugars and poor combinations of foods that are hard to digest can result in acid reflux and a buildup of too much acids and toxins. Eating a more alkaline diet (plant-based) can be a very positive step in helping you to digest your food better. Adding more fruits to your diet and salads is an optimal way to increase fiber. Fiber acts like your ‘intestinal broom’, helping to move food along easier. Red meat contains large amounts of protein, which must be broken down into amino acids in order for digestion to be successful. Reducing your quantity can be extremely helpful in improving gut flora.

Other obvious factors contributing to bad breath are excessive alcohol consumption and smoking. These are habits that are not as easy to change. Recognizing and wanting to are the first steps that need to be taken.

By Frances Michaelson

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Based in the West Island of Montreal, Frances Michaelson is author of several publications including her upcoming book, Let’s Practice Health: Learn Why Your Gut Is the CEO of Your Health. With over three decades of experience, and a broad knowledge base, Frances is widely recognized as a leader in the health and fitness field. She is the former owner of Muscleup Inc., an exercise product distribution company, which she founded and operated for over 20 years. Frances is a licensed naturopath in Quebec and has been a personal trainer for the past 17 years. She is also an avid health and fitness blogger and a frequent conference presenter.

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