Bad breath? Certain strains of probiotic bacteria may help

When it comes to persistent bad breath, the types of probiotic bacteria found in fermented foods like yogurt, sourdough bread and miso soup can help alleviate the offensive odor, according to a new study.

An analysis of previous studies revealed that some bacteria were taken as supplements. Lactobacillus salivarius and Lactobacillus reuteriIt can help freshen breath, according to the report published Tuesday at the BMJ Open.

Halitosis, or halitosis, is the “third most common disease in referral of patients to the dentist, second only to it. [cavities] and periodontal disease,” write Chinese researchers.

The researchers note that the main cause of persistent bad breath is mixtures of gaseous sulfur and other elements, known as volatile sulfuric compounds, produced by mouth bacteria.

Is it possible to neutralize the effects of these compounds?

Researchers scoured the medical literature for studies on the topic to take a closer look at whether probiotic bacteria could help manage bad breath. In the end, they found seven clinical trials involving a total of 278 people ages 19 to 70.

The severity of bad breath in the trials, compounds detected in the mouth, with a score indicating how strong bad breath odors are at various distances from the mouth.

When the researchers pooled data from seven studies, they found that the compounds associated with breath odor were significantly reduced in participants who consumed probiotics, compared to those given a placebo. However, the improvements were not permanent and took about four weeks.

While the findings are encouraging, the researchers caution that the original studies were quite small.

“More high-quality, randomized clinical trials are needed in the future to confirm the results and provide evidence of the effectiveness of probiotics in the treatment of halitosis,” they said.

D., chief of oral medicine, oral oncology, and dentistry at Baptist Health Miami Cancer Institute in South Florida. Alessandro Villa said the findings are significant. What is unknown is whether substituting real foods like yogurt or pickles will have the same positive effect as taking supplements.

Villa said it would be reasonable for someone with bad breath to run a short experiment — about a week or so — to see if consuming such fermented foods could make a difference.

Associate professor of periodontitis and preventive dentistry at the University of Pittsburgh. Fermented and probiotic foods are made up of beneficial live microorganisms, but it’s important to know what type and how much bacteria they contain, says Martinna Bertolini.

“One thing to consider is that the consumption of dairy products to include in a probiotic-rich diet can lead to increased carbohydrate and sugar consumption and increased plaque and biofilm accumulation,” Bertolini said in an email.

Nutritionist Perri Halperin said people with persistent bad breath should see a dentist for potential underlying health issues.

“It can be indicative of health problems that are not dental issues,” said Halperin, clinical nutrition coordinator at Mount Sinai Hospital in New York.

Possible causes of bad breath include:

  • gum disease
  • gaps
  • certain foods, such as garlic
  • problems with tonsils
  • kidney disease
  • severe diabetes
  • dry mouth

Dry mouth, a condition in which the body does not produce enough saliva, can be caused by inadequate hydration as well as medications such as drugs used to treat high blood pressure and diabetes, Villa said.

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