Food and Bad Breath

We often suspect that there is a connection between food and bad breath: the mouth might taste a little strange after a meal containing spicy food or food with strong flavors, and certain foods such as cucumbers and raw onions tend to be followed by burping and breath which tastes, to us, rather unpleasant. These problems are transient however, and tend to pass within a few hours, the question is, does food really cause bad breath? It can do so in a number of ways that researchers in the field are just beginning to understand. The important ones are those that foster the proliferation of anaerobes – bacteria that live in the mouth and produce sulfur compounds with a foul odor.

Some of the known foods that cause bad breath are drying agents – they cause a decrease in the amount of saliva in the mouth. Saliva flushes out the oral cavity, kills off harmful organisms, and keeps the oral tissues healthy. When there is too little of it, food particles and other proteins remain in the mouth and begin to break down. They feed anaerobic bacteria, which are not being washed away. The delicate cells lining the mouth can start to break down. All of this promotes the proliferation of anaerobes and their bad smelling byproducts. Alcohol and tobacco are both notorious drying agents; however, anything that dries out your mouth can forge the link between food and bad breath.

Foods high in protein or sugar, and those with an acid pH have also been identified as foods that cause bad breath. In each case, the foods promote the growth of anaerobic bacteria. Protein breaks down in the mouth producing amino acids, which bacteria eagerly consume and use as cell building blocks, much as our own bodies use amino acids to build and repair tissue. Sugary foods provide carbohydrate energy for cell metabolism, and acid foods create a low pH that many bacteria love. In the end, food and bad breath are related to each other because the same nutrients that feed us also feed the bacteria that cause bad breath. If we keep our mouths clean and healthy, brushing and rinsing after eating, there will be less for bacteria to eat.

Spices and strong flavored foods cause an unpleasant odor on the breath, and sometimes it is related to sulfur compounds; however, these odors do not originate with oral bacteria. They are directly related to the odor or the digestion of the food itself and thus, disappear after a few hours – a day at most. Typical foods that cause bad breath in this manner are spices such as curry, cumin, and paprika, onion, garlic, strong cheeses, fish, smoked products, and fermented foods. Those who love these foods shouldn’t have to give them up: use breath mints (avoid sugar) or other breath fresheners to mitigate the problem. Remember, too, that food and bad breath can be related in an opposite way: certain herbs and spices, such as mint, parsley, cilantro, cloves, and cardamom are great natural foods for freshening the breath.

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Food and Nutrition Sector: What You Need To Know

Food and Nutrition is one of the largest, most essential sectors of any government around the world. The supply and demand of food products is essential in any economy, much less in any healthy and thriving community.

The issue of food and nutrition is considered as one of the most essential components of a successful community as it makes up most of a person’s daily life. The United States understands this, which is why it has created several governmental agencies that are tasked solely to support and consolidate food and nutrition-related concerns.

On top of the list is the National Institute of Food and Agriculture, otherwise known as NIFA. Established in the year 2008, the agency was specifically designed to consolidate all federally-funded agricultural research, and will be subordinate to the Department of Agriculture.

The mission of the NIFA is to “stimulate and fund the research and technological innovations that will enhance American agriculture and make it more productive and environmentally sustainable while ensuring the economic viability of agriculture and production.”

And it aims to achieve this by administering a slew of programs and initiatives like the Food Security Learning Center Program which aims to create and maintain a national, web-based clearinghouse of information on community food security concerns and common community problems related to the underlying causes of hunger and poverty, including the loss of farms and ranches, rural poverty, welfare dependency, hunger, and food access issues.

On the other hand, there also exists the United States Food and Nutrition Service, otherwise referred to as the FNS. The agency operates under the United Department of Agriculture is generally responsible for administering the country’s domestic nutrition assistance programs and initiatives.

The agency has established several projects and grant programs to achieve their primary agency mission, such as the Innovative Food Defense Program (IFDP) which mainly seeks to generate food defense tools and resources which are easily replicated and can most definitely complement, aid in the development of, or improve state, local, tribal and territorial food defense programs.

Meanwhile, there is also the United States Food and Drug Administration (FDA), one of the largest agencies under the United States Department of Health and Human Services.

The FDA is espcially designed to safeguard and promote public health through the regulation and supervision of food safety, tobacco products, dietary supplements, prescription and over-the-counter pharmaceutical drugs (medications), vaccines, biopharmaceuticals, blood transfusions, medical devices, electromagnetic radiation emitting devices (ERED), and veterinary products.

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