What Are the Causes of Body Odor?

Smelling bad isn't always a hygiene problem. Sometimes, it has to do with the foods you eat. There are certain ingredients that often cause these problems. Learn about them in this article!
What Are the Causes of Body Odor?

Last update: 04 May, 2022

Did you know that some foods make us smell bad? We give off an odor through our sweat. This happens more often than normal when we eat certain dishes. We aren’t talking about eating raw garlic then reeking for hours. We’re talking about smells that linger despite brushing your teeth or eating breath mints. In this article we’ll be telling you all the real causes of body odor.

What are the causes of body odor?

Woman with surprised look on her face

We shower twice a day, change our underwear, put on deodorant, and so why do we still smell? The bad smell that you release comes from your pores, in a manner of speaking. There are foods that increase your body odor, because they raise the acidity of your sweat. The unpleasant smell comes from a natural chemical imbalance.

Your internal toxins are eliminated in different ways. The main ways are through feces, urine, breath, and sweat. Some things make it more likely that your body will release a stronger, penetrating odor.

This often happens if our diet isn’t adequate or is based on a lot of acidic foods. Why? Because your body has to work more to get rid of the waste.

See also: How to Prevent Excessive Sweating

What foods cause bad odors?

Have you tried everything all you can to be clean and hygienic but you still smell? If so, don’t blame anything but the food you ate last night. Clean clothes, French perfume, or talcum powder in your shoes won’t help.

Want to know what foods increase your body odor? Here they are:

Red meat

Pieces of raw meat

In Charles University, Prague, scientists carried out a very odd and interesting study. They collected the sweat from men that ate red meats and from vegetarians. Then, they made a group of women smell the samples. After, they were asked to tell which were the most unpleasant.

According to the volunteers, the most unpleasant smells came from the men who had eaten meat.


First of all, this causes bad breath. However, it also causes bad body odor in some people.  It is an essential ingredient in many recipes. but contains volatile substances that are released through your sweat. These get absorbed by your blood and lungs, and make your skin and breath give off a horrible smell.

Hydrogenated oil

This is used in junk food, and quickly decomposes in your body. You barely finish eating your hamburger and the start to notice a smell. Your skin becomes greasy. It doesn’t matter if you stay still or sit for a while. You’ll give off a bad odor due to the oil that is also in the french fries you get with the burger.


The aromatic spices in curry, like cumin, are great for giving your food a different flavor. However, they also turn into an enemy for your personal hygiene. For instance, when you eat an Indian dish and then exercise, your sweat will smell much stronger. The smell will also last even after taking a bath.


Glasses of drink with trumpet in the background

Alcoholic drinks have more cons than pros.you’ll certainly smellcomes out through your pores and breath


What happens here is similar to what happens with meat and junk food. If you love sausages or pates, maybe this is the reason for your bad smell. Sausages decompose in such a way that they cause stomach acid and gas. This can be one of the main causes of body odor.



This vegetable is delicious and healthy. However, after eating it,  you’ll notice a strong smell in your urine. This is caused by mercaptan sulfur, a component present in asparagus.


Fish usually smells a bit from the time we buy it until the time we cook it. It can also be one of the causes of body odor too. However, it only affects those who suffer from a hereditary metabolic disease called trimethylaminuria.

This problem causes a delay in breaking down the fish, and, as a result, it’s harder to get rid of the toxins.

Cabbage and broccoli

Cut broccoli florets

Cabbage and broccoli are delicious, and you can enjoy them in thousands of recipes. However, they belong to a family of “smelly” foods. This is because they’re rich in sulfur.
The smell that leaves your body as gas is similar to putrid eggs. If you like these foods a lot, though, the benefits still outweigh the cons as they give you a lot of antioxidants and nutrients.


Are you one of those people who can’t start the day without a hot cup of coffee? Or maybe you’re someone who drinks coffee several times during the work day. This may be is one of the causes of body odor, despite you bathing or changing clothes. Caffeine stimulates your sweat glands and increases your perspiration.


Onion is such a versatile food, but it can also be the cause of the odor on your skin and in your breath (especially if you eat it raw). The oils in onions are absorbed into your blood stream. They are filtered through your lungs, and then leave your body through your breath.

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