Body odor is a condition that is medically referred to as bromhidrosis. Although it is closely associated with scent, the fact that you have body odor simply means that your smell is unpleasant. Just in the same way that your fingerprints are unique, scientists have discovered that everyone has a unique body odor, leading the now common term “odor print”. This explains the reason why a trained dog is able to track a suspect and not any other person.
Contrary to common misconception, body odor has nothing to do with sweat. Sweat in itself is odorless. However, you are most likely to have body odor in case of excessive sweat.
It is apparent from the above explanation that we all have body odor. While some people have a mild odor, others have a strong odor that borders on pungent smell. Interestingly, what you perceive to be a strong body odor may not necessarily be strong to a different person who may perceive the same to be a nice odor.
Like everyone else, your body odor is evident in your armpits, groin, feet, genitals and other closed areas of your body. Luckily, some of such areas have hair, which plays the important role of diffusing the odor.
Cause(s) of Body Odor
The cause of body odor is the bacteria that are naturally found on your skin. The bacteria act on secretions produced by both eccrine and apocrine sweat glands, the glands that secrete chemical compounds that your skin needs for its own maintenance. The action of bacteria leads to the production of isovaleric and propionic acids, leading to either vinegar or cheese-like smell.
There are also those people whose body odor turn out to be that of fish, the “fishy smell”. Such people happen to have a genetic disorder referred to as trimethylaminura. This is a rare disorder that inhibits the body’s capacity to metabolize the chemical compound trimethylamine. The un-metabolized chemical compound produces the “fishy” odor, which the body releases through breath, sweat, and urine.
Why do we all have body odor yet some people’s odor turn out to be stronger than others’? This is simply because your body odor can be influenced or is informed by various factors including;
- Psychological conditions, including high-stress level, which leads to stinky odor.
- Medical conditions, including diabetes and trimethylaminura, leading to “fishy” odor.
- Excessive sweating, which leads to increase of bacteria on the skin, leading to over-production of acids on the skin.
- A change in diet to spicy foods and foods low carbohydrate.
Home Remedies for Bad Odor
Although there are various conventional ways you can employ to manage your body odor, there are simple home remedies that you can use to effectively manage the odor.
- Diet – Diet influences your body odor in a major way. You can effectively manage your body odor by simply choosing the kind of foodstuffs to include in your regular diet. You need to avoid spices and red meat.
- Warm bath – Having a shower every day with warm water helps kill some of the bacteria on your skin, leading to reduced production of acids on your skin and, therefore, minimal odor.
- Tea tree oil – Tea tree oil has both antiseptic and antibacterial properties. Consider adding a few drops of the oil to your bathing water whenever you go to the shower to kill bacteria on your skin. You can also mix a reasonable amount of the oil with water in a spray bottle to use as a deodorant.
- Turnip juice – Like with Tea tree oil, turnips contain antibacterial property, which helps kill bacteria on your skin. Consider crushing a bunch of turnips in the blender to form a paste. Extract the juice that you need to apply to areas of your body you are most likely to sweat including in the armpits and groin area. Do this every day to eliminate body odor.
- Apple Cider Vinegar – In addition to its antibacterial property, apple cider vinegar is very effective in balancing your skin’s pH level. Balancing of the pH level prevents bacteria on your skin from being overactive, which aids in eliminating body odor. Consider adding a cup of apple cider vinegar to warm water for bathing for best results.
Your body odor can be mild or intense. This depends on various factors indicated above. Luckily, the indicated remedies has been used for decades to manage body odor. You too can use one of the remedies for fresh and pleasing odor every day.