Interesting Facts You Might Not Know About Body Odor

In the following article, we're going to explain a few interesting facts that you may not have known about body odor, so keep reading!
Interesting Facts You Might Not Know About Body Odor

Last update: 12 May, 2022

The human body has 50 thousand sweat glands that can produce up to one liter of sweat a day and release harmful toxins that cause body odor. The groin and the armpits are the areas that produce the most odor.

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 inside your body. Each person’s smell is a reflection of what they eat.

The odors we perceive throughout our lives are stored in our olfactory memory. Both perfumes and bad smells can influence emotional states and make us accept or reject foods, people, and objects.

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

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

Bad foot odor.
Skin is formed by thousands of pores that allow the body to breathe. They are escape channels for the sweat glands that are used to produce this salty liquid known as sweat. This substance is meant to regulate body temperature. This 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.

Tips to help you prevent bad body odor

  • Don’t use the same shoes several days in a row without airing them out.
  • Use different products for each area.
  • When you take a bath, spend more time cleaning more complicated areas (feet, genitals, groin, and armpits)
  • Use antibacterial soap.
  • Dry your body very well after bathing, especially your toes.
  • Wash your clothing properly, using special disinfectants if necessary.
  • Opt for clothing made from natural fibers like cotton that absorb and evaporate sweat.
  • Remove armpit hair to prevent secretions.
  • Apply baking soda 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 we previously said, our 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. Here are some foods that cause bad odor:

Chewy candies

Odor-causing bacteria loves 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.

Junk food.

Packaged food

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

Dairy products

Eating a lot of milk, yogurt, or cheese 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.


One of the reasons why you may sometimes smell like “fish” is a genetic disorder known as trimethylaminuria. Eggs can cause this, regardless of whether you consume them raw, fried, or in some sort of meal.

Egg whites.


Chile and other spices that are used in cooking, such as cardamom, cumin, or curry, can cause body odor. 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. These toxins 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. Don’t eat too much of these foods.


Coffee’s strong flavor and odor has to “escape” some way. Caffeine produces chemical effects that cause a change in the way the body sweats and how much it sweats.


Alcoholic beverages are quickly transported to the bloodstream and change its composition. This accelerates the sweating process, even though the odor may penetrate and could stay around for longer periods of time.

This text is provided for informational purposes only and does not replace consultation with a professional. If in doubt, consult your specialist.