A new study suggests that milk is perhaps even more effective at banishing garlic breath—particularly if you drink it before or during a garlicky meal. Researchers found that milk offered greater odor-reducing effects for garlic breath than other foods previously tested—prunes, basil, burdock, eggplant and mushrooms. “The water [in milk] rinses the mouth,” says Barringer, “but it’s not just the water; it’s the fat.” That’s why whole milk was more effective than skim.
Can’t mix milk with your Asian stir-fry? Drinking green tea before or during a meal may also mitigate garlic breath, as the polyphenols reduce volatile sulfur compounds.