Garlic breath…every foodie's nightmare. It can last for about 24 hours, so we're paying pretty heavily for enjoying most of our favorite foods.
Luckily for us, Ohio State University scientists seem to have found a cure. A study was published in the Journal of Food Science outlining these exciting findings.
The scientists started by explaining what causes garlic breath in the first place: “The volatiles responsible for garlic breath include diallyl disulfide, allyl mercaptan, allyl methyl disulfide, and allyl methyl sulfide,” says the abstract.
Who knew garlic could be so complicated?
In order to test their theory, the team conducted a study in which they had a test group of participants chew on 3 grams of garlic for 25 seconds before drinking water as a control. Immediately after, they were given raw, juiced, or heated apple, raw or heated lettuce, raw or juiced mint leaves and green tea.
Results were measured via ion flow tube mass spectronomy. Basically, they measured the amount and presence of each of the volatiles mentioned above, and they did so for up to an hour after consumption.
According to Munchies, the green tea made no difference at all, so don’t try that one. However, the study did find that raw apple and raw lettuce worked surprisingly well. Each decreased the concentration of the smelly-breath volatiles by 50% or more compared to water, for the first half-hour.
Of course, I don’t think any of us are surprised that mint leaves had an even better deodorizing effect. Why else would our toothpaste be mint flavored? There were some differences between the apple, lettuce and mint to note, though. Each food was tested using both heated and raw versions, and while both worked, raw versions of the foods worked better.
The next time you are having your favorite garlicky pizza, pasta or pretty much anything else (since garlic works with almost everything), remember to have a raw apple incorporated into dessert, or order a dessert that comes with mint leaves if you’re at a restaurant. Apple pie a la mode, anyone?