Body Odor – Don’t let that smell be me


Ever been to the gym and the stench of sweat fills the air or even worse, you get self-conscious because you can smell yourself? Body odor and perspiration are part of life. This can happen while exercising, when feeling too warm, when feeling stressed or anxious, or when nervous. The body has two main sweat glands that don’t actually produce odor, rather, the poor smelling perspiration is a result of bacteria mixing with the sweat. Keeping this odor at bay can be controlled by taking a few precautions.

It is necessary to keep yourself clean, and this can be done by showering at least once per day. That might be stating the obvious but not everyone practices daily bathing. This will help wash off the bacteria and sweat from the skin. It is important to wash the areas where you particularly sweat. After the shower, it is necessary to dry off. Moisture and bacteria produce the smell. Using antibacterial soap while showering can help cleanse the bacteria and keep the odor away. After drying off from the shower, one should then apply an antiperspirant under the armpits. Antiperspirants contain aluminum chloride which helps control sweat. They usually also contain deodorant. For improved results, this can be applied more than once daily. Clothing should also be washed and changed often, especially any that have been heavily sweated in. For example, changing your socks becomes important to avoid foot odor especially if your feet sweat.

There are natural ways to reduce body odor. Look for probiotic deodorants. You can also use a solution of hydrogen peroxide and water to cleanse the areas needed. Apple cider vinegar, lemon juice, and witch hazel can help reduce sweat.

Certain foods can also be avoided that make a person sweat more. Onions and garlic are two common culprits. Spicy food can also lead to body odor. Drinking too much caffeine or alcohol can also induce sweating. Smelly foods such as broccoli are also broken down into smelly compounds that enter the blood stream and produce the sulfur smell. Being overweight can also lead to increased sweating which leads to increased bacterial mixing, exuding body odor.

Hyperhidrosis is a condition characterized by excessive sweating. Diabetic ketoacidosis can also change a person’s breath and create an odor that enters the sweat glands to be released.

Body odor usually starts to occur when a person reaches puberty. Body odor is most likely to occur in the following areas: armpits, groin, feet, armpits, belly button, genitals, and behind the ears. An interesting fact is that dogs can learn to indicate who their owner is based on their familiarity of the reoccurring body odor they are exposed to by their “human”.

There are also certain medical conditions that can cause an increase in sweating. An overactive thyroid or menopause can cause a person to sweat more, increasing the likelihood of body odor. Other conditions such as liver disease, kidney disease, or diabetes can produce a different type of odor via sweat. It is important to see if a doctor is a person has reoccurring night sweats, you have reoccurring cold sweats, or if sweating disrupts your daily routine. Different smells can be different indications of poor health and therefore, it is important to seek a doctor’s help for diagnosis. Body odor can certainly make a person self-conscious and it is associated with personal hygiene. Therefore, taking the necessary precautions to stay squeaky clean and odor free, become necessary.

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Understanding the microbial basis of body odor in pre-pubescent children and teenagers | Microbiome | Full Text (

SHAREABLE RESOURCE: Ten Things to Know About Body Odor : ACSM’s Health & Fitness Journal (

Body Odor: Causes, Changes, Underlying Diseases & Treatment (

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Dr. Megan Johnson McCullough owns a fitness studio in Oceanside CA called Every BODY's Fit. She has a Doctorate in Health and Human Performance, M.A. in Physical Education & Health Science, and she's an NASM Master Trainer & Instructor. She's also a professional natural bodybuilder, fitness model, Wellness Coach, and AFAA Group Exercise Instructor. She has 6 books on Amazon too,.