Interesting Facts You Might Not Know About Body Odor

· November 13, 2014

The human body has 50 thousand sweat glands that can produce up to one liter of sweat a day and release harmful toxins.  The groin and the armpits are the areas that produce the majority of odor.  In the following article we are going to explain a few interesting facts that you may not have known about body odor, so keep reading.

Did you know that your body odor is unique and one-of-a-kind?  It’s the truth, it’s like your DNA or fingerprints.  It depends on several different factors like your diet or the chemical processes developed inside you.  Each person’s smell is a reflection of what the eat and is part of an ancient system of communications with fellow humans.  That’s why, for example, women in their most fertile state “smell” more without working out, and even after bathing.

The odors we perceive throughout our lives are stored in our olfactory memory.  Both perfumes as well as bad smells can influence emotional states and provoke us to accept of reject food, people, and objects.

Everyone believes that bad body odor is caused purely by lack of personal hygiene, however, it could also be due to climatic factors, hereditary factors, or diet and consuming certain medications.

The most “conflicting” areas (the feet, groin and armpits) have glands that are in charge of producing larger amounts of sweat, and are also areas that have very little ventilation, which allow bacteria to grow and decompose sweat.

Bad foot odorSkin is formed by thousands of orifices called “pores” that allow the body to breathe.  It is an escape channel for the sweat glands that is used to produce this salty liquid known as sweat.  This substance is meant to regulate body temperature, which is why we sweat when we have a fever, strong emotions, when it’s hot, when we exercise or eat something spicy, etc.  It also promotes the elimination of toxins, water, and mineral salts that are no longer serving a purpose.

Tips for preventing bad body odor

  • Don’t use the same shoes several days in a row without airing them out.
  • Use products that are specific for each area.
  • When you take a bat, spend more time cleaning more complicated areas (the feet, genitals, groin and armpits)
  • Use antibacterial soap.
  • Dry your body very well after bathing, especially your toes.
  • Wash clothing properly, using special disinfectants if necessary.
  • Opt for clothing made from natural fibers like cotton, to absorb and evaporate sweat.

Bad odor

  • Remove armpit hair to prevent secretions from decomposing by bacteria.
  • Apply sodium bicarbonate or cornstarch to your armpits to reduce sweating and kill bacteria.
  • Reduce your consumption of red meat, fats, garlic, onions and alcoholic drinks (opt for fresh fruits and vegetables).

Foods that cause bad odor

As said previously, diet has a lot to do with the smell our bodies create, beyond hygiene or the season of the year.  If you have problems with your body odor, it could be due to something you’re eating.  Pay attention to the foods that cause bad odor.

Chewy candies

Bacteria that cause bad odors love sweet things.  When yeast grows, the sugar in sweets is converted into alcohol.  As a consequence, this creates more acidity than the body needs, therefore producing a more intense odor.

Hydrogenated oil

This is an ingredient in junk food.  Yet another reason (beyond just causing weight gain, high cholesterol, cardiac problems, etc.) for not eating it.  Hydrogenated oil quickly decomposes and causes poor digestion, causing body odor to increase.

6 reasons to not eat junk foodPackaged food

Pate or sausages are not good for body odor.  When they decompose (during digestions) they cause stomach acid, heartburn, flatulence, etc.  This means that it’s best not to consume them so much, regardless of how much you like them.


Excessive milk, yogurt, or cheeses is one of the things that causes bad body odor.  This is because, according to studies, these products contain a lot of protein (casein) that produces Hydrogen sulfide when it breaks down, which is a favorite for bacteria.


One of the reasons you may sometimes smell like “fish”, is because of a genetic disorder known as trimethylaminuria.  Eggs are one food that causes this, regardless of whether you consume it raw, fried, or in some sort of meal.

Egg whitesSpices

Chile, primarily, but other spices as well that are used in cooking, like cardamom, cumin, or curry.  Opt for more gentle spices, like mint, parsley or basil.


Especially red meats and fish.  This is because they take a long time to pass through the digestive tract, causing them to putrefy and release bad odors and toxins.  They then turn into sweat and flatulence, causing bad odor.


Legumes and beans, as well as whole grains, produce methane, hydrogen and carbon dioxide during digestion.  This means they are food for bacteria and cause bad body odor.  Do not eat too much of these foods.



This strong flavor and odor has to “escape” some way.  Caffeine, on the other hand, produces chemical effects that produce a change in the way the body sweats and the amount it sweats.


Alcoholic beverages are quickly transported to the blood stream and changes decomposition, accelerating the sweating process, even though the odor may penetrate and could stay around for longer periods of time.