Penis looking good? Check. But a good-looking penis isn’t enough – a partner wants a member that smells as fine as it looks – or at least doesn’t emit a strong penis odor that works against its handsome appearance. Basic penis health regimens, such as washing regularly, can help to fight penis odor. But sometimes a stubborn odor requires fighting on multiple fronts. In such cases, clothing and diet choices can have an impact on a guy’s penis odor situation.

Why the rank smell?

Just why is penis odor such a common issue for men? Well, it actually makes sense when a guy looks at it objectively.

First off, everyone knows that body odor tends to come about from sweating. Sweating releases bacteria on the skin, which creates a strong odor. Sweat, of course, comes from physical exertion and/or higher temperatures—and the penis is generally in the “tropic zone” of the body. First, unless a guy regularly goes nude or commando, the penis is most often kept beneath two layers of clothing (trousers and underwear)—and often one or both have a snug fit, which increases heat.

Second, unless a guy manscapes, the crotch is filled with a big thatch of pubic hair, which provides insulation to increase the heat quotient. Beyond that, when blood rushes into the penis, as it does several times a day, it increases the heat as well.

All of which combines to make sweating more likely, and therefore increases the chances of penis odor.

Diet and clothing

As mentioned, washing regularly is the first step in the charge against penis odor. But what a guy wears and eats/drinks can also have an impact. With that in mind, the following tips may be helpful.

- Be careful of smelly foods in the diet. Some foods are associated with strong smells naturally, and these aromas often have an effect on body odor as well. For example, onions and garlic are generally associated with a “big’ smell. But every person’s body metabolizes food differently, and what may produce no smell in one guy might cause a reek in another. It pays to experiment to see if certain foods are better or worse for an individual’s penis odor.

- Add more water to the diet. Staying hydrated is important for general health, but it also can help reduce penis odor. The more water in the body, the more it is able to dilute or weaken strong odors.

- Check zinc and magnesium levels. A man might want to ask his doctor about his zinc and magnesium levels. If these levels are low, body odor tends to increase. If it turns out he needs more, he should discuss with his doctor whether a change in diet or use of a supplement is in order.

- Go loose. Tight clothing shows off a man’s assets, but if it’s too tight in the crotch, there’s more sweat. Choosing looser-fitting underwear and/or trousers can make a difference. So can opting to lose clothing altogether; if a guy is able to go naked at home for a couple of hours a day, it can help to “air out” his penis.

- Go natural. Synthetic fibers trap more heat; natural fibers let the skin breathe. When possible, go with cottons, etc., rather than rayons or nylons in choosing pants and underwear.

Making smart diet and clothing choices can have a positive impact on penis odor, as can making a smart choice when selecting a superior penis health creme (health professionals recommend Man 1 Man Oil, which is clinically proven mild and safe for skin). First things first: look at the label and be sure that the chosen crème contains vitamin A, which has antibacterial properties that can help reduce unwanted penis odor. The crème should also include antioxidants, such as alpha-lipoic acid and vitamin C, which can eliminate excess free radicals and thereby prevent damaging oxidative stress.