The surprising foods you should eat to banish garlic breath 你应该吃什么来去除口中的蒜味

2017-01-11 15:21 千龙网

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Garlic, as many chagrined garlic-bread lovers have discovered, has surprising staying power. Twenty-four hours after eating the stuff, a pungent scent still lingers on the breath and even in the sweat. In fact, one doesn't even need to put the garlic in one's mouth to get garlic breath.

大蒜具有令人惊讶的持久味道,这让许多爱吃蒜蓉面包的人苦恼不已。即使吃过大蒜24小时之后,刺鼻的蒜味依然残留在人们呼出的气息甚至排出的汗液中。事实上,人们甚至无需吃蒜身上就会有蒜味。

In 1936, doctors reported in the Journal of the American Medical Association that a patient who'd been given garlic soup through a feeding tube had it on his breath a few hours later. Another doctor wrote that he had experienced something similar after delivering the baby of a mother with “a very decidedly obnoxious garlic odor to her breath.” Soon after birth, “I was surprised and rather amused to note that the child also had a strong garlic breath odor,” he wrote. “On occasion I have mentioned this to other men and they usually think that I am attempting to be facetious.”

1936年《美国医学会杂志》刊登的医生报告中提到,一位靠食物导管摄取大蒜汤的病人在几小时后呼出的气体中就带有蒜味。另外一位医生提到自己也有过类似的经历,一次他为一位“口中充满了令人讨厌的蒜味”的孕妇接生,婴儿一出生,“我发现他的呼吸中有股浓重的蒜味,这让我既惊讶又觉得非常有意思”,他写道:“有时候我对别人讲起这件事,他们通常以为我是在开玩笑。”

The reason garlic breath can happen to people who haven't even chewed the stuff themselves, like babies and feeding-tube patients, is that garlic is stuffed with sulphur compounds that are released into the bloodstream after being digested. Whisked along by the blood, they seep out into the lungs and up the throat and out the mouth. No amount of brushing your teeth will get rid of it – the smell comes not from any garlic hanging around your mouth but from chemistry happening inside you.

有些人并没有咀嚼大蒜但仍然会在呼吸中带有蒜味,比如说婴儿和靠导管进食的病人,原因在于大蒜中充满硫化物,这些硫化物被人体消化后会进入血液,它们在血液中快速移动,渗透到肺、喉咙和口腔中。刷牙并不能去除蒜味——因为蒜味并不是来自口腔中的残留的蒜渣而是来自发生在身体内的化学反应。

Fighting chemistry with chemistry, it turns out, is a better approach. Some years ago, Sheryl Barringer, a scientist at Ohio State University who studies how volatile molecules contribute to flavour, had a student ask her about doing a project on garlic breath. There was some research on foods that, if eaten alongside the garlic, seemed to destroy the odour: some top performers included lettuce, chicory, celery, potato, parsley, mint leaves, peppermint, basil, and mushroom. But not as much was known about why. Barringer and a number of students since have looked to see just how well certain foods eliminate garlic breath and how, exactly, they do it.

用一种化学反应去对抗另一种化学反应是比较好的清除蒜味的方法。几年前,一位学生就一项关于呼吸中存在的蒜味的研究请教俄亥俄州立大学教授谢里尔•巴林杰,一位研究挥发分子如何影响气味的科学家。有研究表明,如果大蒜和其他食物一起吃,蒜味就可以消除。最佳去蒜味的食物包括生菜、菊苣、芹菜、土豆、欧芹、薄荷叶、胡椒薄荷、罗勒和蘑菇,但原因尚不明确。巴林杰和学生们一直在试图发现一些食物清除口腔蒜味的具体功效以及它们是如何去除蒜味的。

Lettuce, mint, and – somewhat surprisingly – apples have been a focus so far. “Apple is one we discovered accidentally,” says Barringer. A student who'd eaten garlic and sipped water, as a control experiment, saw surprisingly low levels of odour molecules. Going back through everything eaten that day, the student remembered eating an apple a couple hours before. Lo and behold, when they tried chewing a bit of apple after eating garlic, down went the odour.

生菜、薄荷和苹果(有点儿出人意料)一直是他们研究的重点。巴林杰说道:“苹果是我们偶然发现的去蒜味食物。”在一个对照试验中,一位学生吃过大蒜后喝了点水,结果他体内的蒜味分子水平出奇地底。回顾他那天所吃的食物,这位学生记得在此之前几小时他吃过一个苹果。你瞧,当人们吃完蒜后再吃苹果,蒜味就会变淡。

The group's latest paper, which came out in September last year, traces the odour-killing power to a likely chemical reaction between four of garlic's sulphur compounds and a set of other molecules called phenolics. Volunteers chewed garlic, along with a smorgasbord of other options, and exhaled into a mass spectrometer, which detected the molecules on their breath. The researchers also mixed crushed garlic, water, and either pure enzyme or certain phenolics, including rosmarinic acid, found in mint, and had the mass spectrometer sniff these as well. Right away it was clear that raw apple, lettuce, and mint were better performers than heated versions. That indicates that enzymes, which help catalyse chemical reactions but fall apart at high temperatures, are probably involved.

研究小组去年九月份最新出炉了一篇论文,认为食物去除蒜味的功效很可能是由于大蒜中的4种硫化物和一系列被称为酚的分子发生化学反应的结果。志愿者们把大蒜和许多其他食物一起咀嚼,然后对着质谱仪呼气,质谱仪能够检测出呼吸中所含的分子。研究人员还把捣碎的大蒜、水和纯酶或一些酚类物质如薄荷中的迷迭香酸混合,然后用质谱仪检测。他们发现生的苹果、生菜和薄荷比加热之后去蒜味效果更好。这表明对化学反应起催化作用并且在高温下会发生分解的酶很可能参与了蒜味清除。

Of all the options, mint makes the most sense, says Barringer. Mint has very high levels of phenolics, to begin with. For a chemist, it's easy to look at rosmarinic acid and garlic's sulphur compounds and see very clearly just how this bit here would attach to this bit there and produce a molecule with no smell at all. Apples have a lower amount of phenolics, though still a decent helping. But lettuce had the least of any substance tested, far less than even green tea, which had no deodorising effect at all. “That's where I would say we don't completely understand what's going on,” says Barringer. Pure enzyme on its own did not do much to reduce most of the sulphur compounds, the team found. But in combination with phenolics, enzymes are probably behind the somewhat mysterious effects of lettuce.

巴林杰说,在这些食物中薄荷去除蒜味效果最好。首先,薄荷中酚类物质的含量很高。对于化学家来说,很容易考虑迷迭香酸和大蒜中硫化物之间的反应,观察两者之间是如何相互作用从而生成一点气味也没有的分子。苹果中的酚类物质含量要低一些,尽管它也可以有效地清除蒜味。但是生菜中各项检测指标的含量都很低,甚至远低于根本就没有除味效果的绿茶。“这点让我们非常费解,”巴林杰说。研究小组发现纯酶自身并不能消除大部分硫化物。但酶很可能是和酚类物质一起作用让生菜具有了消除蒜味的效果。

By making use of this still-not-totally understood chemical dance, you can tame garlic breath. But lest we forget, no amount of deodorizing will change the fact that humans are living, breathing chemical factories. The things we exhale or sweat out can reveal not only what we've eaten in the last day but the presence of certain bacteria camping in our mouths, and even whether we have certain diseases.

通过利用这一尚未完全被人类认识的化学过程,人们可以消除呼吸中的蒜味。不过我们千万不要忘记,即使我们可以去除蒜味也不能改变人类是活生生的而且会呼吸的化学工厂这一事实。我们呼出的气体或流出的汗不仅能够透露出我们吃过什么,我们的口腔中有什么细菌,甚至还能反映出我们是否带有某些疾病。

Scientists are exploring how molecules in exhaled breath could be used to diagnose lung cancer, and whether using electronic noses to sniff blood, urine, or tissue samples couple reveal tell-tale volatile signatures of everything from ovarian cancer to brain damage. While keeping one's stench to a minimum is a common courtesy, it's interesting to think that there may be something of value, after all, encoded in it.

科学家们正在探索如何利用我们呼气中的分子来诊断肺癌,以及是否可以通过用电子鼻探测血液、尿液和组织样本来揭示与卵巢癌和脑损伤等相关的挥发物特征。让我们身上的异味降到最低是一种社会公德,但这其中也可能蕴含着有价值的发现,这点至关重要。

注:英文内容来源http://www.bbc.com

责任编辑:Lu Qing(QN0045)

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