Body Odour Due to Alcoholism (Smell like Garlic?)

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Call our local number 01603 513 091
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Anything too much is not normal, just like drinking alcohol.

Enough amount of alcohol in the body is beneficial, but it will have adverse effects if there is excessive alcohol intake.

Having a body odour can make a person feel uncomfortable and uneasy. There can be more unfavourable situations that may arise because of having unpleasant body odour.

Therefore, as early as possible, find out the root cause of body odour and do something to minimize the smell, at least if not avoiding it.

Alcohol starts affecting the whole body once you began to drink. Having a glass of wine or beer occasionally will not be a problem, but high content of alcohol can affect the system.

Better to watch out for your health and drinking habits to avoid body odour and future problems related to alcoholism.

If you’re having body odour due to alcohol addiction, you should need medical advice for treatment of alcohol problems.

Does Alcohol Cause Body Odour?

Alcohol, in its most straightforward description, is toxic. When people often drink beer, wine, and other alcoholic beverages, their liver converts most of the alcohol into acid.

However, some of it comes out of the body system through sweat and breath.

It is very easy to determine if a person is having high-level alcohol content such as his behaviour, smell on his breath, or having a strong odour on his pores or skin.

Drinking too much alcohol can lead to body odour. Therefore, one reason for having body odour is due to alcoholism.

It does not matter what type of alcoholic beverage one drinks, such as beer, vodka, and others; once the body receives it, the same smell will come out of the body system.

According to the expert John Mayer, PhD, alcohol treats toxins in the body. However, the liver can only use 12 ounces of beer per hour.

If a person drinks beer more than that, his body will take time to metabolize it.

The body will get rid of excess alcohol in the body through urine, sweat, and breath, as explained by Jim White, an exercise physiologist and a registered dietician.

The higher the alcohol content in the body, the more chances of alcohol oxidation will occur, which means that there will be more stink-causing acid that can lead to body odour.

To avoid such body odour, one can have options by either stop drinking alcohol, or select a lower intensity kind of workout or hydrate.

Taking a shower and wearing clean clothes can minimize the smell of the body.

Still, one should reduce the amount of alcohol intake and drink more water to dilute the alcohol substance in his body and excrete alcohol faster than its usual way, keeping him from having a body odour.

Before getting into the habit of drinking alcohol, find out its effects to anticipate its impact on one’s health. Too many alcohols in the human body can affect the whole nervous system.

Alcohol hinders chemical signals in the neurons, which may cause prominent intoxication signs such as impulsive behaviour, poor memory, incoherent speech, slow reflexes, and less or proper coordination in the human body.

At some point, too much alcohol in the body can also affect the human body’s circulatory system. If a person drinks alcohol, then he can temporarily increase his heart rate and blood pressure.

Long-term alcohol drinking may also be a cause of constant heart rate, weakening of heart muscles, irregular heartbeat, and high blood pressure.

Thus, alcoholism is highly related to cardiovascular illnesses or diseases like high blood pressure, stroke, arrhythmia, anaemia, blood clotting, and cardiomyopathy.

Can a Person Smell Like Alcohol Without Drinking?

Anyone can smell like alcohol even without drinking alcohol. People can certainly have some ways to smell like alcohol even without taking any alcoholic beverages.

One typical example is the heavy utilization of some rubbing alcohols for medical reasons. Cheaper sort of vodka also has a similarity with rubbing alcohol when it comes to its scent.

In some other ways, people can get a smell of alcohol when they try to wear a specific type of clothing that already smells like alcohol before washing the clothes to make the scent away.

Some people can also smell like alcohol from the mouth wash products they are using every day.

In some severe instances, people can smell like alcohol even without drinking in recent days since this could be one of the side effects of alcohol addictions.

Their breath and pores could have scents of beers, wines, any other type of alcoholic beverages, or even fermented sugar, which is also related to some kinds of alcohols.

There are also some instances that people can smell like alcohol even without drinking alcoholic beverages because of some illnesses or diseases they experience.

The most type of condition that may cause their breath or pores to smell like alcohol is diabetic ketoacidosis. It is a type of condition related to type 1 diabetes.

This type of health condition, diabetic ketoacidosis, was typically manifested by the breath of an individual who bears an alcoholic or fruity odour.

And this is mainly because a person’s cells cannot utilize glucose which he could consume for energy, caused by the low insulin level of the cells.

Because of this, the human body starts to burn fat to give energy to cells, and some by-products like ketones began to produce.

Once ketones started to accumulate in the bloodstream, an individual’s breath could start giving off odours like alcohol.

Generally, diabetic ketoacidosis is life-threatening. If an individual has this kind of health condition, then much better to see his doctor for a regular check-up, resulting in early diagnosis and treatment if necessary.

Although this kind of situation is quite rare, it is still possible to know more about this matter and know how to avoid such a condition causing a smell like alcohol.

A regular check-up with the primary physician is essential for ensuring that overall health status is appropriately checked.

And once needed treatment for some unique instances, there would be an immediate response that the medical specialists could do.

Learn Some Ways on How to Evade Smelling Like Alcohols

There are several ways on how people can avoid smelling like alcohols and for them to have a refreshing smell or fragrance every day.

Alcohol’s smell has been lingering on the skin or clothes for several minutes or house after they drink wine, beer, vodka, or some other types of alcoholic beverages.

The skin pores and breath of a person could still have a scent of alcohol after taking even a few glasses of alcohol.

Fortunately, there are some ways and procedures on how people can avoid having a scent of alcohol after drinking a few glasses of alcoholic beverages. Here are some of the things that people should know about this matter:

Eat some foods with onion and garlic

One of the most effective means to hide the scents of alcohol is to take pretty stinky foods. People should try eating foods containing onions and garlic for breakfast. These foods could be breakfast omelette, savoury crepes, savoury scones for breakfast, and others.

Take a cup of coffee

Coffee is another item that people could try to conceal the scent of alcohol on their bodies. They could take coffee during breakfast, and they may continue taking coffee on that day.

However, they need to ensure that they only have moderate taking of coffee because too much coffee could increase the pulse of the heart.

Have some peanut butter for lunch meals

Peanut butter is also an effective way of hiding alcohol breath. People could somehow try some foods like a jelly sandwich with peanut butter, noodles containing peanut sauce, and others.

These are just some of the steps and effective ways to conceal the scent of alcohol on their bodies.

But the most important and effective way for them not to smell like alcohol is to minimize having alcohol intake.


People should not consume too much alcohol so that their bodies can recover from alcohol scents or smells.

It is vital to regulate or minimize taking alcohols to maintain their healthy living, resulting not to experience any harmful condition like diabetes which may cause smells like alcohols on their skin pores or breath.

If people want to recover from alcoholism fully, they should avoid alcohol intake since this is a primary reason alcohol odours stay in their bodies.

Is drinking alcohol causing your body odour? Abbeycare is here to help you over your alcohol addiction and have a healthy and odour-free body again!

Schedule your appointment with any of our clinics in found in Gloucester and Scotland, whichever is closest to you. Or you may call us directly on our local phone number  01603 513 091.


About the author

Peter Szczepanski

Pete has been on the GPhC register for 29 years. He holds a Clinical Diploma in Advanced Clinical Practice and he is a Clinical Lead in Alcohol and Substance Misuse for Abbeycare Gloucester and works as the Clinical Lead in Alcohol and Substance Use in Worcestershire. To read more about Pete visit his LinkedIn profile.