Aside from tooth decay, gum disease, and other consequences of terrible parenting, the most common reason Americans go to the dentist is to solve the mystery of bad breath. Some patients genuinely suffer from bacterial halitosis, but most carriers of stank-mouth forgot they had a tuna sandwich an hour ago on their lunch break, and are just out there ruining the mood of everyone they come into contact with.
So, to help you keep your breath as gloriously fresh as the factory where they make Listerine, we've ranked the top eight foods to avoid (beer is excluded, because we absolve it of all sins) to ensure your mouth is as clean as a dental assistant's gumline.
8. Indian curry
Despite some proposed antibacterial qualities, the hard-hitting spice of Indian curry demands a fistful of fennel, lest you want to smell like a slumdog of the not-millionaire variety.
This Mediterranean delicacy pairs spitted, high-fat meat like lamb with stinky dairy products (feta, tzatziki), a healthy dose of acidic tomatoes, and the Pig-Pen of the vegetable kingdom: the onion.
Coffee smells great... and then it hits your mouth. At that point, the acidity and natural enzymes in the coffee combine with your saliva in a bad, bad way. It neutralizes the acid in your stomach, which sends up some gastric juice reinforcements that belong nowhere near your tongue.
Your roast beef sandwich gets half of its flavor from horseradish sauce, and horseradish sauce gets most all of it's flavor from isothiocyanate, a chemical compound in the plant with a scent so putrid that it's a natural defense against animals, and also people who might want to be your friend.
Hippies, Whole Foods shoppers and hippie Whole Foods shoppers swear by this fizzy fermented tea, and the acrid stench of kombucha after-burps makes you want to swear at hippies. And though even the purest 'bucha will give you bad breath, should your mouth smell like nail polish remover, it's probably due to foreign bacteria creating aldehyde. Or you may smell like an orange gone bad -- another completely normal side effect.