Everybody has body odor, but that doesn’t make it any less embarrassing. A person can take many measures to prevent and reduce it. Often, these measures focus on reducing the amount of sweat the body produces because the most basic body odor develops due to sweat glands and bacteria. However, a variety of other conditions can cause foul body odor, as well.


1. Basic Body Odor Causes

Human skin has two types of sweat glands: eccrine and apocrine. Eccrine glands exist throughout the body while apocrine glands develop primarily in areas with many hair follicles -- in most people, the groin, armpits, eyelids, ear, nostrils, and breasts. Apocrine glands secrete fat droplets in breast milk while the glands in the ears help create earwax. In the skin, they produce an odorless liquid that contains a special protein. The process of bacteria breaking down this protein creates odor. This is why armpit sweat often stinks, but forehead sweat does not.

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