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Why Does Ketosis Make Your Breath Smell?

Do You Have Bad Breath? From Licking The Back Of A Spoon To Ditching High-protein Diets, Experts Reveal How To Deal With It...and Why Mints Just Make The Problem Worse

Do You Have Bad Breath? From Licking The Back Of A Spoon To Ditching High-protein Diets, Experts Reveal How To Deal With It...and Why Mints Just Make The Problem Worse

The date's gone well, your jokes have been funny and it's soon time for that all-important first kiss. But that age-old worry is never far away - does my breath smell? Bad breath can be a real mood killer, annoying everyone from colleagues to fellow commuters and frightening away potential mates. And while many of us believe a quick breath check - blowing into the palms of the hands and sniffing – is enough to detect an unpleasant odour, experts warn this method is actually ineffective. Instead, they advise licking the back of your wrist or touching a spoon against the tongue for a truer measure of freshness. Here, they reveal the most effective ways of identifying bad breath, and how to get rid of it once and for all… ‘Breathing into the palm of your hand doesn’t always work, as you only really get the smell of your hands and it has to be really bad,’ says Dr Uchenna Okoye, clinical director of London Smiling Dental Group and an Oral B smile director. Instead, she says licking the back of the wrist, waiting until the saliva dries and then smelling it will give a better indication. ‘It’s a way to isolate the saliva. If you have bad breath the saliva will smell. ‘Bacteria in the mouth break down food and make sulphur compounds which is what produces the pong,’ she explains. The smell of breath might change throughout the day, so it’s best to check up to three or four times over the course of 24 hours, she said. Another method is to lick the back of a spoon and once again wait for the saliva to dry, then smell it again. Looking at the tongue can be a good measure of the mouth’s cleanliness. ‘If the tongue is covered in a white coating it means you’re not quite right. There are some people that naturally have a whiter tongue,’ Dr Okoye said. A p Continue reading >>

How To Tell When You’re In Ketosis

How To Tell When You’re In Ketosis

Ketosis isn’t some mystical state, achieved only by days and months of fasting and spiritual connection. Kind of the opposite, actually. A lot of people (whether or not they follow a low carb diet) go into a state of ketosis every night without even trying, just by having a functioning metabolism. Of course, as soon as they eat carbs again, they’re knocked out and back to burning carbohydrates preferentially – but we’re not here to talk about them. The question at hand is for those following a low carb diet, who want to be able to tell when they’re in ketosis. Seems simple enough. Keto Sticks I’m including these, and listing them first, because they’re pretty widely known in the keto community. You really can’t throw a rock without hitting a post about them. The thing is, keto sticks work nicely to tell that your body has been in a ketogenic state recently, they just aren’t the best at letting you know whether or not you’re in a ketogenic state now. I’m not totally against using them, just not as a regular means of identifying your body’s current state. They’re certainly a good starting point to try and see when you hit that keto place. Keto Meter There are two varieties of these: blood & breath. Both test your current state of ketosis, but are costly. The advantage of breath over blood is no skin pricking, and any diabetic will tell you that has its benefits. The breath meter will also save you in the long run, if you plan on using this daily for any duration of time. While the blood meter is initially 1/5 the cost of breath, use requires testing strips that are $35 for 10. Yikes. Of course, if you don’t want to spring for a testing meter, you can check your body’s symptoms… Your Pee & Poo Yup. Get excited, you’re about to become very Continue reading >>

How To Combat Bad Breath While Dieting

How To Combat Bad Breath While Dieting

Nobody wants bad breath. Bad breath can be embarrassing and problematic–especially if you have a social occupation! So what do you do about the bad breath that often accompanies dieting? First of all, it helps to understand what causes your bad breath. When dieting, bad breath is normally caused by the metabolic state of ketosis, in which the body burns fat more efficiently. Ketones are released during this metabolic process into the urine and the saliva. The good news is that if you have bad breath while dieting, you are probably doing a good job sticking to your diet and losing weight. The bad news is that bad breath caused by these ketones gives breath a heavy fruity or acidic odor–not good for those of us who like to carry on a conversation. Also, increased acid in the stomach that is not buffered by food can also add to the unpleasant breath odor. So, what do you do about bad breath while dieting? Keep in mind that this is not an oral hygiene problem. No amount of brushing or flossing will help bad breath caused from dieting. So, we must address the source of the problem. If the bad breath is caused by the ketones released while burning fat, one of the most effective ways to treat this is to dilute your saliva by drinking lots of water. You may also try munching on parsley or other pleasant spices like cloves. If your bad breath is caused by extra stomach acid, then you may find success in eating foods that are more alkaline. Alkaline food can help neutralize the amount of acid in your stomach. Additionally, eating Tums can help neutralize the odors and supply you with extra calcium. Finally, chewing digestive gum will aid in proper digestion of your food and ward off odors caused by indigestion. In summary, here are some tips to combad bad breath while dieting Continue reading >>

Keto Breath: Cause And Remedies

Keto Breath: Cause And Remedies

You’ve been on a ketogenic way of eating for a couple of weeks now, and you’ve stayed under your 20g of carbs every day. Congratulations on your dedication, your reward is… stinky breath? That’s right, most people who try keto at some point in the first month or so of being in ketosis will experience some unpleasant breath. Some people describe it as “metal smell” or having “metallic taste in the mouth”. What a fun reward for choosing a healthful way of eating! The Cause of Keto Breath The explanation is simple, though it’s usually unavoidable, at least until you’re fully fat adapted. As the body shifts into ketosis, it turns fats into ketone bodies, specifically beta hydroxybutyrate, acetoacetate, and acetone. They are all completely normal and healthy to have in the body in the amounts it produces. These ketone bodies, especially acetone, can be detected by smell on the breath. This is actually one of the most reliable ways to tell when you have gotten into ketosis, and can be smelled more easily when you are deeper into this fat burning carbohydrate deprived state. Studies have shown this, and there are devices such as breath ketone test monitor that can measure the amount of acetone in your breath, and tell you the level of ketones that you’re producing (1). The science of this lays in the lungs, and the blood vessels that supply them. Since ketones circulate in the blood, they interact with the small air sacs in the lungs. As these ketones are exposed to the air in your body, they are expelled as a gas, with the distinctive odor of acetone. How Long Does Ketosis Breath Last? Some people never experience this phenomenon, even when they are doing the keto diet correctly and healthfully. Others experience it more as a taste than as an odour. For Continue reading >>

6 Simple Ways To Get Rid Of Ketosis Breath

6 Simple Ways To Get Rid Of Ketosis Breath

Is your breath starting to smell a little funky on the ketogenic diet? Don’t worry, ketosis breath is a common side effect. Here are easy, simple ways to get rid of it. Going on a low carb diet has become a popular way of losing fat and helping to treat some health conditions. The essence of low-carbing is to get most of your calories in the form of fat, protein, and leafy greens, rather than starchy carbs. Do you struggle with bloating, gas, constipation, or other digestive issues? We’ve created a FREE guide to healing your gut naturally. Click here to get your FREE copy of our Digestion Guide! While there are many benefits to starting a low carb diet, you can also experience several unpleasant side effects. The common one we’re going to discuss here is ketosis breath and how you can get rid of it. What is Ketosis Breath? When you go on a strict low carb diet, you’ll probably notice that your breath begins to have a unique, fruity, and sometimes even nail-polish-like smell. To understand why this happens, it helps to have a little background on how your body reacts to a low carb diet. Firstly, the body’s main energy source is glucose, which comes from carbohydrates. When you go on a low carb diet, your body is unable to find any of this fuel, so it enlists it’s backup option: burning fat for energy (1). The problem with ketones is that they contain acetone as part of their makeup, which is what gives them their characteristic smell. When your body begins to burn fat for fuel instead of sugar or carbs (yay, fat loss!) it produces substances called ketones in the process. This state is also referred to as “ketosis,” which is where the nickname “keto” in keto breath comes from. The main way your body burns off ketones is through urine and, you guessed Continue reading >>

Ketosis Breath: How To Stop Bad Keto Breath

Ketosis Breath: How To Stop Bad Keto Breath

Keto breath is a common complaint new people on the keto diet have. I want to address what keto breath is, why a keto diet causes bad breath, and lastly, how to stop bad breath on a ketogenic diet. What Causes Keto Breath? I have to tell you about how ketosis works in order for you to understand why you get keto breath in the first place. Ketosis happens when your body has burned off all the excess stored temporary energy in your body and is now utilizing fat in your body or the fat you eat as energy. You’ll be in a state of burning carbs and burning fat at the same time, which is 100% normal. When you restrict carbs dramatically, like on a ketogenic diet, your body is forced to turn to fat for fuel. As you burn more and more fat, your body will create ketone bodies. Ketone bodies are a by product of fat metabolization. In other words, anytime you burn fat, wether its from the fats you ate or the fat that exists in your body, your body is creating ketones. There are 3 main ketone bodies, but I don’t think it’s important to get into them in this article. Acetone is one of them and that’s what is likely causing your breath to smell bad. This is important: The ketone bodies that are generated from burning fat is “energy” your body can use (instead of using glucose). In fact, your brain prefers ketones over glucose to function! HOWEVER, when you are in the state of becoming keto adapted, that is, your body is NOT fully able to burn fat for fuel, you will have excess ketone bodies in your body. Excess ketone bodies is BAD for your health. Either your body utilized them for energy or it needs to get rid of them. Your body gets rid of excess ketone bodies through your urine and your breath. And that’s how KETO BREATH happens. It’s when your body has excess keto Continue reading >>

Ketogenic Diet Leads To Acetone Bad Breath

Ketogenic Diet Leads To Acetone Bad Breath

Q. I have been reading about the advantages of a ketogenic diet to lose weight and control blood sugar. I tried this in the past. I lost fat and felt healthy, but I had horrible acetone-smelling breath. This was even mentioned in my student evaluations, not a good thing for a professor. Is there any way to avoid this? A. A ketogenic diet gets very little of its energy from carbohydrates and most of it from fat. In this low-carb high-fat plan, protein intake is moderate. Under these conditions, the body burns fat for energy and produces chemicals called ketones as a by-product. Such a diet helps with body fat loss and improves metabolic markers such as HDL cholesterol and triglycerides. Acetone is one of the ketones your body makes, and it shows up in the breath when following a strict no-sugar no-starch approach. According to Eric Westman, MD, a proponent of this diet, the acetone breath should eventually fade. Until it does, he suggests drinking plenty of water, brushing teeth (and tongue) regularly and chewing sugarless gum, mint leaves or cinnamon bark. Would you like to learn more about the ketogenic diet and why it works so well to shed pounds? We recently had the opportunity to talk to Dr. Westman about his research and the low-carb approach to weight loss, blood sugar control and heart health. Show # 958 titled Flipping the Food Pyramid Upside-Down aired a few weeks ago. It will be free for another two weeks as an mp3 download from this link. Don’t miss this chance to get specific details about the pros and cons of the ketogenic diet. Continue reading >>

How Diet Can Cause (or Help Fix) Bad Breath

How Diet Can Cause (or Help Fix) Bad Breath

Bad breath isn’t a life-threatening problem, but it’s socially embarrassing and it can make life pretty rough, especially if your job has some kind of social component. And even though it sometimes comes from poor oral hygiene, even people with totally solid brush/floss/mouthwash/tongue scraper routines can get breath problems, because not all bad breath is caused by germs in your mouth. Here’s a look at the relationship between diet and breath, including the infamous “keto breath,” but also including other factors like the bacterial population of your mouth and how different foods you eat can affect odor-causing bacteria. Diet and Breath The obvious connection between diet and breath is smelly foods, like garlic, coffee, and fish. Obviously, these foods do have an effect, but it’s temporary: you can brush your teeth and get rid of it. A harder problem is bad breath that persists even if you aren’t eating anything particularly smelly – clearly there’s something else going on here. This study goes over some of the causes of bad breath. In 90% of cases, the problem has something to do with the bacterial population of the mouth. The human mouth naturally plays host to a lot of different bacteria, just like the gut. Just like healthy gut flora, healthy mouth bacteria don’t cause problems, but if something goes wrong, various species of mouth bacteria can produce several different compounds that make your breath smell bad. The study also goes over some other related problems. For example, the inflammation involved in gingivitis and other inflammatory diseases can make the problem worse. Another problem is saliva. Saliva basically “washes” the mouth at regular intervals If you’re not making enough saliva for some reason, bacterial populations in the Continue reading >>

Get Rid Of Keto Breath

Get Rid Of Keto Breath

How to Get Rid of Bad Breath Caused by Ketogenic Diets Did you know that there is a connection between certain diets and bad breath? And no, this isn't just referring to eating lots of onions and garic! Low carbohydrate/high protein or high fat diets, such as the Keto, Paleo, South Beach, and Atkins diet, can actually cause bad breath. This foul smelling breath problem is referred to as "Keto Breath" in many communities. Diets that put the body in ketosis, while excellent for losing weight, may leave your mouth with an offensive taste and odor. Why do Ketogenic Diets cause this "Dragon Breath"? There are two main reasons that a low-carb/high-protein diet causes bad breath: 1. Volatile Sulfur Compounds (Sulfur gases): There are billions of bacteria living in your mouth at any given moment. These bacteria consume protein from the foods you eat and produce sulfur gas, or bad breath as a waste product. By eating high protein content and fewer carbs, your are introducing more protein for bacteria to eat and this allows them to produce additional bad breath. 2. Ketosis The main goal of ketogenic diets is to minimize the consumption of carbohydrates by replacing them with healthy fats and proteins. This method is commonly used in order to achieve timely weight loss. Typically, the body uses glucose from carbohydrates as a source of energy. However, on very low carb diets, the body is instead forced to burn fat for energy. This burning of fat is known as ketosis and produces ketones that are expelled from the body through urine or exhalation. In excessive amounts these ketones can produce a foul smell and create ketosis breath, or keto breath. How do I stop it? Luckily, there are multiple measures you can take to help prevent keto breath while on low-carb/high-fat and high-prot Continue reading >>

Low-carbers Beware The Breathalyzer

Low-carbers Beware The Breathalyzer

A recent article in the International Journal of Obesity should give low-carbers cause for a little alarm. Here is what happened to a man in Sweden on a low-carb diet: We report a case of a 59-year-old man, body mass index 26.6 kg/m2, who began a weight reduction program, partly because of knee pains but also because he was a glider pilot where weight is important. He used a Swedish textbook on obesity treatment written by S Rössner together with the commonly used Swedish VLCD [very low calorie diet] Nutrilett (Cederroths, Stockholm, Sweden), 5 packets/day for 3 weeks, which is an approved standard regimen. This treatment resulted in a weight loss of 7 kg. During dieting, the man discovered that an alcohol ignition interlock device, installed in an official company car, indicated that he had consumed alcohol and the vehicle failed to start. This was confusing because the man was a life-long teetotaller and was therefore both surprised and upset by the result. As he had been supervising private aviation he had access to a second breath-alcohol analyzer, which indicated a simultaneous BAC ranging from 0.01 to 0.02 g/100 ml. A VLCD diet (very-low-calorie diet, a protein-sparing modified fast) contains mainly protein along with a small amount of carbohydrate and very few calories, usually fewer than 1000 per day. Just about anyone going on one of these diets will soon be in producing ketone bodies at a pretty high rate. But the same goes for a more traditional low-carb diet as well. If carbs are kept at a low level, ketosis will occur. In fact, it’s desired. Ketone bodies are water-soluble products of fat metabolism. The body has three ways of dealing with ketones: it can burn them for energy (which it does with great success), it can release them in the urine (which is Continue reading >>

Is Your Low-carb Diet Giving You Ketosis Breath?

Is Your Low-carb Diet Giving You Ketosis Breath?

One of the possible "side-effects" of following a low-carb diet (be it the Atkins Diet, South Beach Diet, or any other low-carb diet plan) is "bad breath", sometimes accompanied by a bad taste in the mouth. This is distressing, of course, but don't think you're condemned to live with it! Causes There are many causes of bad breath, but if the change in your breath happened suddenly after starting a low-carb diet there are two main causes: 1) bad breath due to acetone caused by ketosis, and 2) an excess of protein in the diet producing ammonia in the breath. Bad Breath from Ketosis ("Keto-Breath" or "Ketosis Breath") One of the results of cutting carbohydrates in our bodies is that we start to use more fat for energy. This process generates molecules called "ketones." One type of ketone, called acetone, tends to be excreted both in the urine and the breath. The description of the smell varies, but it is often described as "fruity" or like the smell of apples which are "past their prime" (or even downright rotten). The good news is that keto-breath usually doesn't last forever. Most people find it dies down after a few weeks or at the most a few months. The reason is unclear, but it seems our bodies adapt in some way. Children on a ketogenic diet for epilepsy have been shown to have less acetone in their breath as time goes on, for example. In the meantime, there are things you can do to minimize the impact of "keto-breath": Drink more water: try 8 glasses per day to see if this helps, and then you can experiment from that point. Natural breath fresheners to try include mint, parsley or other greens, cloves, cinnamon, and fennel seeds. Some people swear by breath capsules, which are usually made from parsley oil (e.g. Mint Assure) for keto-breath. Others find they do not h Continue reading >>

Anorexia, Your Diet, And Bad Breath

Anorexia, Your Diet, And Bad Breath

Next time you think about skipping breakfast in the morning, think about the consequences it may have on your breath! This is one cause of bad breath that is easy to overcome. If you miss breakfast for whatever reason, or if you are anorexic, you extend your morning breath until you eat something. Why does this happen? When you are sleeping, your brain knows that you will not be eating. Your brain in turn slows down saliva production. Saliva has a high concentration of oxygen (which is a natural enemy of bad breath and gum disease-causing bacteria), the lack of saliva makes it easier for the bacteria to reproduce. As soon as you eat something in the morning, the salivary glands kick in and provide oxygen-rich saliva to dissipate morning breath. If one does not drink enough fluids, he or she may have halitosis from dry mouth. Also, there is also something called "hunger breath", which is caused by ketosis, a medical condition in which the body starts breaking down fat if the person is not consuming enough calories. Ketones are produced in ketosis, and if there are large amounts of ketones being produced, the acidity of the blood can be increased. In turn, the body tries to lower the pH by ridding itself of the ketones in the lungs and urine, thus causing bad breath. In a low-carb diet, this is actually the main principle, since the body is tricked into thinking it is undergoing famine, even if the person is continuing the same calorie intake. Often times, people who are on extreme diets like high protein, low-carbohydrate or have eating disorder problems have chronic bad breath. The food that you eat can affect your breath, at least for a short time, especially if you eat foods with garlic, onions and curry. Most of the time, sulfur compounds created by oral bacteria whe Continue reading >>

The Solution To Keto Breath – An Annoying Low Carb Side Effect

The Solution To Keto Breath – An Annoying Low Carb Side Effect

The keto (low carb, LCHF or whatever you want to call it) diet isn’t all bacon, weight loss and happiness. One of the side effects of being in ketosis can be bad breath, also known as keto breath. Sometimes you get it when you’re starting out with a ketogenic diet and have the keto flu. I’ve learned how to keep keto breath under control so it doesn’t bother me much these days. But when I get dehydrated I start getting that metallic taste in my mouth and know it’s probably keto breath. Luckily I know how to fix it now! Who gets it? Since I’ve been on my keto journey, I’ve encountered 3 types of people: People who don’t get keto breath at all – I don’t know why they’re so lucky. Ketosis just doesn’t seem to affect their breath at all. I have no idea why their bodies react differently. People who sometimes get keto breath – Some people don’t feel the keto breath for days and then suddenly it hits them. It can also be worse around the same time each day. If I had to guess, I’d say it’s when they’re starting to get hungry. People who constantly have keto breath – They have it 24/7, some of them can get rid of it temporarily with tricks (I´ll list some below) but some are unfortunately just beyond that. Honestly, I’m not a medical professional and I can’t explain why everyone’s different when it comes to keto breath. You can have two people who eat the exact same low carb food, one of them gets it and the other one doesn’t. Maybe it has something to do with the individuals metabolism. I’d love to hear from anyone who can explain this to me. What is keto breath like? Most people describe it as a fruity, acetone like smell. It can be quite strong. Some people who suffer from it say that they can feel it and almost taste it, like a Continue reading >>

Caveman Breath

Caveman Breath

When I first tell people I’m on a Primal Blueprint diet emulating our ancient ancestors, the witty ones are usually quick with a clever comment or two, usually referencing the Flintstones, heavy brow ridges, monosyllabic grunts, or some combination of the three. A hearty laugh is shared (mine being exceedingly polite), and they’ll go on to ask if I’ve experienced increased hair growth, whether or not I met my wife by clubbing her over the head, and if I’ve got caveman breath (always accompanied by a theatrical, exaggerated step backward). What would I do without such comedians? I gotta admit, though, they might have a point about the caveman breath. Although I don’t have a problem with it personally (unless my wife has kept quiet all these years), bad breath is a common complaint I hear about low-carb dieters. Strangely enough, I rarely hear it from actual low-carbers, but rather from overly critical skeptics. Still, bad breath does happen to everyone, and I for one would be wary of engaging Grok in a close heart to heart talk over some fermented mammoth milk. Even on our own comment boards, reader madMUHHH complained about having constant bad breath. Of course, he was also eating loads of garlic and onions, which are notorious causes of bad breath (regardless of the overall diet), but it does go to show that just because we’re eating healthy Primal foods, it doesn’t mean we’re immune to the ravages of bad breath. Bacteria/Tooth Decay Most bad breath you encounter is probably due to poor dental hygiene. Brushing isn’t enough for some people; sometimes you need to physically remove chunks of food from between your teeth. I doubt Grok was a big brusher, but he probably picked his teeth with bones or sharpened sticks (I think the annoying sensation of mea Continue reading >>

Ketosis Breath Smell Information And Possible Remedies

Ketosis Breath Smell Information And Possible Remedies

One of the drawback to a ketosis diet is the bad breath that can go along with it. 13 Pins2.74k Followers Continue reading >>

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