Body odour is never pleasant, but neither are the harmful deodorant products you'll find on your super market shelf.
With growing awareness about the toxic affects of big brand antiperspirants and deodorants, there is high demand for natural body odour solutions.
The good news is that you don't need to risk your health by using commercial products laced with invasive chemicals that block the lymphatic stream, disrupt immune system and can even cause cancer.
With just a handful of simple, natural ingredients you can DIY your own deodorant at home or you'll find some fantastic alternative products these days in your local health food market or in our store.
Keep reading to find out some of the key causes of body odour, how to reduce it naturally once and for all.
Causes of Body Odour
If you thought the cause of body odour was perspiration, you might be surprised that it has nothing to do with body odour. Perspiration on its own is odourless; it is the bacteria and other toxicities contained within the sweat that causes the odour.
Remember, perspiration is a completely, natural and healthy process of detoxification and cooling that the body defaults to when it heats up e.g. through strenuous activity or exercise.
The extent to which your body gives off an unpleasant odour is generally a reflection of how much toxicity or junk is stored below the surface of your skin.
For example, anaerobic bacteria, which flourish when your body doesn’t have enough oxygen - good clean, air to breathe - may be the cause of your body odour.
Or, it could a lack of efficiencies in your body's other channels of elimination - congestion in your bowels or urinary tract.
An efficient, healthy metabolism is one that is working optimally without constant obstruction, able to rid itself of waste products easily. Any imbalances in metabolism will result in stronger odours.
In other words, you need to support, not obstruct, your body's natural channels of elimination - Perspiration, Respiration, Urination and Defecation.
Toxins inside the body and in immediate environment are also a major contributor to body odour.
We are bombarded with toxins in the air, our food and our homes that accumulate in the body when the organs of elimination can’t dispose of them. The liver and intestines may be clogged up, causing the body to produce odours.
Other possible cause of body odour:
- Kidney disease
- Liver disease
- Fungal infections
- Refined sugar and synthetic sweeteners feeds bacteria and fungus on the skin
Learn more in 5 Signs You Need to Do a Detox Cleanse & Where to Start.
When anything seems off, it can usually be attributed to diet.
When it comes to natural solutions for body odour, changing your diet can be one of the quickest and most effective solutions.
A toxic diet laden with processed, refined and fatty foods will all contribute to the build up toxicity in the body, contributing to body odour.
Additionally, if you don't eat enough high water content fresh fruits, vegetables and drink enough water, you're going to inhibit your body's ability to process and eliminate waste from your digestive tract.
Try eliminating from your diet these types of foods:
- White flour and bread
- Cookies, cakes and biscuits
- Hydrogenated Oils e.g. Margarine and Vegetable Shortening
- Refined sugars and packaged foods
- Food colourings, additives and MSG
- Deep fried fatty foods
- Processed meats e.g. sausages, bacon and salami
- Homogenised and pasteurised dairy
Include as much whole food - food that is in it's natural un-processed state as you possibly can. Aim for 80% of your diet to include these foods.
Try drinking one teaspoon of bicarbonate of soda in eight ounces of water after your meal. Eating sprigs of parsley also eliminates garlic and onion odour.
Other causes of odour could be dietary imbalances resulting in constipation, or a deficiency of magnesium or zinc.
Some people who eat large quantities of meat or who eat a lot of junk food have a very distinctive body odour. Some individuals can’t metabolise foods containing large amounts of choline, such as fish, liver and other animals, and it can cause a strong odour. If this sounds like you, try eliminating these foods from your diet and see if the odour stops naturally.
The bottom line is that the cleaner your diet, the less likely you'll be to experience body odour over time and distance.
3. Tobacco Use
It should go without saying, tobacco use is a major cause of body odour and quitting tobacco is one of the most important natural solutions. Not only does tobacco come back through your lungs, but it comes through the skin.
It is likely that it mixes with other elements in your body’s chemistry to create a distinct odour. If you stop smoking, it may take several weeks for the body to rid itself of odour causing substances, but it will make such a change to your health and body odour.
4. More Natural Solutions for Body Odour
These natural solutions for body odour are easy to use, convenient, cost effective, and the ingredients are easy to get your hands on from your local supermarket or health food store.
One of the simplest solutions is to prepare your own Deodorant or Body Spray at home, using Distilled Water and Witch Hazel as a base and then by adding several drops of your favourite Essential Oils.
With hazel is an astringent that kills bacteria and helps to rid the skin of trapped moisture and oils. It won't leave residue on the skin and eliminates odour fast.
DIY Deodorant / Body Spray
Using a glass spray bottle, mix the following:
- 50 ml of Witch Hazel
- 1 TBSP Distilled Water
- 1/2 TSP Magnesium Flakes
- Pinch Sea Salt
- 12 drops of Lavender, Ylang Ylang and Grapefruit essential oils (can also use Bergamot or Tea Tree)
Another good way to help eliminate body odour is to take a hot bath in Epsom Salts 2-3 times per week. Epsom salt is an antioxidant known to detoxify the body through the pores. It also helps to produce serotonin, which helps us to relax, relieving stress which can be a factor in the production of body odour also.
Detox Epsom Baths
- Fill a bath tub with hot water and pour 2-3 cups of Epsom Salts into the running water.
- Add 10-15 drops of Tea Tree and/or Lavender Essential Oil
- Soak your whole body and relax for 20-30 minutes.
We also hand-prepare and make available some delightful Detox Bath Salt Blends in our store for your convenience.
Here are a variety of other tips:
Alcohol or Witch Hazel: Wipe your armpits with grain alcohol or witch hazel instead of deodorant.
Apple Cider Vinegar: ACV eliminates underarm body odour when used in place of deodorant because it reduces the pH of the skin. Bacteria can’t live in areas with low pH.
Learn more in The Self Care Powers of Apple Cider Vinegar.
Baking Soda: Baking soda, the odour-eating standby, can be used instead of deodorant. Just apply the powder to your dry armpits. It will kill bacteria and help absorb perspiration. Cornstarch can also be used instead or mixed with the baking soda.
Alfalfa or Parsley: Chewing alfalfa, parsley and other leafy greens will help neutralise body odour (likely due to the deodorising effect of the chlorophyll).
Radishes: Juice about two dozen radishes, add one-fourth of a teaspoon of witch hazel and put in a squirt or spray-top bottle. Use as an underarm deodorant or to reduce foot odour.
Rosemary Oil: It’s an excellent deodoriser. Put 8-10 drops of the essential oil in one ounce of water and apply where needed.
Sage: Drinking a cup of sage tea daily to reduce sweat gland activity can work wonders, especially for those who perspire excessively due to tension. Use one and a half teaspoons of dried sage or two tea bags in one cup of water and steep for ten minutes. Drink in small doses throughout the day. Fresh sage leaves blended with tomato juice has also been found to be very effective.
Turnip Juice: Turnip juice will reduce underarm odour for up to 10 hours. Grate a turnip and squeeze the juice through cheesecloth until you have two teaspoons. Wash your armpits first and vigorously rub one teaspoon of the mixture on each one.
Wheatgrass: Drinking two ounces of fresh wheatgrass does the trick. The chlorophyll will dramatically reduce body odour.
Ginger: Take one big piece of ginger and mash it up. Use a cheesecloth to get the water from it. After showering, apply it under your armpit with cotton. Body odor should disappear within two weeks. Save the ginger water in the refrigerator after every time you use it.
Tomato Juice: Start by drinking six ounces of tomato juice per day for one week. Cut down to 12 ounces every two to three days the following week. Once the odor has cleared, drink the juice on an as needed basis. The salt in this juice evens out the pH balance as well.
Lemon: Cut a lemon in half and place it over the part of the body that the odor is coming from. You can use this on the hands, underarms or the entire body. Leave it on or shower it off, whichever works best for you!
Learn more in 9 Incredible Health & Healing Benefits of the Lemon.
If you love using deodorant but want a better option for your body, try the Noosa Roll On Deodorant or the Deodorant Stick. With only organic, natural ingredients, these deodorants will keep you feeling fresh and your body healthy.
There are many different reasons for body odour, but that doesn't mean you have to live with it.
There are so many natural solutions for body odour, none of which involve harmful antiperspirants that introduce dangerous toxins into your body or that stop a vital bodily function from occurring. Experiment with these different natural solutions to find the best option for your lifestyle and body chemistry.
Tolman Self Care.