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Body odor – Causes and Symptoms of Body Odor

Body odor is an unpleasant smell that is produced as a result of perspiration. Odor occurs when the sweat combines with bacteria that usually reside in the skin. Sweat itself is odorless but when it gets combined with bacteria can produce an offensive odor. Good hygiene and antiperspirant deodorants can be used to manage body odor. Sweating is a minor issue but the odor is more troublesome. For normal sweating and body odor, lifestyle changes and home treatments can effectively manage the symptoms.

Causes of Body odor
The main cause of body odor is bacteria which combines with sweat and causes bad smell. The other causes include:

  • Anaerobic bacteria which flourishes when the body does not have enough oxygen may be the cause for body odor.
  • Metabolic imbalance also causes strong odors from the body.
  • Some people who eat large amounts of meat or those who are vegetarians have a distinctive body odor.
  • Certain foods and drinks like garlic, coffee, onions, spicy foods and alcohol also cause body odor.
  • Sweat glands under the arms and in the groin secrete a substance that causes bad odor.
  • There may be underlying causes of excessive sweating like low blood pressure, diabetes, metabolic dysfunction, parasites, menopause or emotional stress.

Other disease conditions causing body odor
The conditions causing body odor include:

  • Gastrointestinal disorders
  • Diabetes ketoacidosis
  • Urinary tract infection
  • Typhoid fever
  • Scurvy
  • Athlete’s foot
  • Fish odor syndrome
  • Hepatic failure
  • Hyperhidrosis
  • Vaginal discharge
  • Isovaleric acidaemia
  • Levocarnitine
  • Methyl cysteine
  • Normal aging
  • Normal puberty
  • Pitted keratolysis
  • Poor hygiene
  • Trypasinaemia type-1
  • Low levels of male hormones
  • Hyperthyroidism
  • Hereditary factors
  • Weak metabolism
  • Fungal infection
  • Fever
  • Low blood sugar levels
  • Prolonged illness
  • Strong medicines
  • Bacteria present in the sweat
  • Smoking
  • Fungal infection
  • Deficiency of zinc mineral, toxins, cavities etc
  • Menopause
  • Eating curry or cumin
  • Chronic renal failure
  • Fatty foods
  • Intake of caffeine or carnitine
  • Hepatic failure

Symptoms of body odor
Giving off an unpleasant smell is the only symptom of body odor. This happens when most people sweat. The factors that cause most people to sweat include:

  • Hot weather
  • Nervousness
  • Stress or anxiety
  • Exercise

When to consult a medical professional?
Contact your medical health professional if you experience the following:

  • Sweating disrupts your daily routine
  • When you notice a change in body odor
  • Sudden sweating which can be more or less than the usual
  • Night sweats without any reason
  • A change in the body odor can be a sign of certain medical conditions and may get complicated.
  • Consult your doctor if you notice these symptoms.

3 responses to Body odor – Causes and Symptoms of Body Odor

  1. body odor is nasty that is why i always take a bath twice a day.”‘:

  2. Emma, you are an idiot. It’s people like you that shouldn’t blog. Obviously you didn’t read the article. Poor hygiene is only one reason for body odor…the majority of reasons are underlying medical conditions. I wish you begin to suffer, then you will know how it feels. Two showers a day won’t save you!

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