Foot inspection, 1918
Sodium bicarbonate (baking soda)
Baking soda is a solid white powder that can be used for a whole host of household applications, from cleaning to cooking. Baking soda is used to remove odors in the refrigerator, in the laundry, on carpets and rugs, in cats’ litterboxes…almost anywhere. Despite its traditional use as an odor-remover, some scientists say that baking soda is often not very effective for removing smells. But many people use baking soda to prevent foot odor and say that they find it to be very effective.
Using Baking Soda to Prevent Foot Odor
- Sprinkle one or two teaspoons of baking soda in your shoes before putting them on.
- Alternatively, try mixing baking soda with ground dried sage, and let the mixture sit overnight in an airtight glass jar. The next night, sprinkle the mixture into your shoes at night. Use nightly.
Why It Works
Baking soda is thought to soak up odors in its environment. It may also help to absorb excess sweat and keep the foot a little bit dryer in the shoe.
Baking soda is generally recognized as safe. You can eat it, apply it topically to the skin, or take a baking soda bath, with no negative side effects.
However, if foot odor is very severe, you should think about possible causes. Athlete’s foot is a common cause of foot odor and may need to be treated separately. Kidney or liver problems are also sometimes associated with foot odor. If you suspect an underlying health problem may be causing your foot odor, it would be wise to see a doctor or other health practitioner.