Body odour is an unpleasant smell that happens when you sweat.
This odour is caused by bacteria that lives on the skin and breaks down your sweat into acids that are absorbed by your body.
Every person experiences body odour at different points in their life but for some, it can be a constant problem.
Body odour signs and symptoms
If you’ve reached puberty, your apocrine sweat glands will have developed and started to produce sweat.
When this sweat reaches certain areas of your skin, it reacts with the bacteria, such as protein, and creates a byproduct which smells.
There are some factors which may make body odour worse. Being overweight, eating rich or spicy foods and medical conditions can all create different bacteria on the surface of your skin that might smell strongly.
Body odour can be controlled by keeping the areas of your body that regularly sweat clean and dry.
Wash your armpits, feet and folds of the skin regularly to limit the number of bacteria on your skin. In some case, you might need to use an antibacterial soap or bodywash.
It’s also recommended to wear clothes made of natural materials, such as cotton, and wash them regularly to remove excessive sweat already on the material. This prevents bacteria building up.
Regularly shaving your armpits can also help reduce body odour. The hair traps sweat and odour so by removing it, you reduce the smell.
Your diet can have a strong impact on how your sweat smells so limit the amount of spicy foods and garlic you eat.
There have been studies to show that eating lots of red meat can also make your body odour worse.