Monisha’s Minute: Fresh Pits

About a year ago, I made the switch from aluminum deodorant to non-aluminum deodorant. Now I am not about to get into research that has and has not been done linking antiperspirants and deodorants to cancers and cysts. But I will state this, putting a substance containing aluminum under your arms day after day for years and years with it going into your pores sounds a little harsh on the body when you think about it. Right?


Various types of women deodorant

I have to be honest folks. The first time I tried to switch from an aluminum antiperspirant to a non-aluminum deodorant, I went cold turkey and it did not go so well. I threw out my Secret and bought one of those crystal rocks. Things were all great for about two weeks. Then it seemed like no matter how many times I wiped my armpits throughout the day, they smelled like potent curry powder! And you do know how curry powder smells right? Straight up musty!

At the time I worked in an office setting and I had a big afro. The last thing I wanted people to think was that I was trying to become  so one with nature that I had stopped bathing. So I went back to my deodorant containing aluminum 🙁

About a year and some change later, I met a lady and in conversation she mentioned she did not wear deodorant.  Why she brought that up? I have no idea. But after she mentioned it, I realized she wasn’t funky. So I told her about the not so good experience I had with the crystal deodorant rock. She shared with me some information and tips that explained why things didn’t work out for me and my pits the first time around:

LadyPitsGive Your Pits Time To Detox: If you are like me, you probably started wearing deodorant in your adolescent days. During puberty the sweat glands become active and this is when most children develop body odors. If you have ever worked with a group of 6-8 graders you would know this. The scent of a class of middle schoolers around 2:00PM can be used as a weapon of mass destruction. So if you are 26 years old, you have basically put deodorant (that contains aluminum) under your arms for at least 15 years. Yikes! So your body needs time to sweat that out. This is the super raw smell you get after a few weeks of not wearing deodorant or antiperspirant that has aluminum in it. But there is a way to cut the odor folks.


Cut Back On The Red Meat: An article in the Natural News reports that consuming red meat is the primary cause of body odor, because it “putrefies” in your digestive tract and releases toxins in your bloodstream. Foods that lack fiber, contain hydrogenated oils and other processed ingredients may also contribute to body odor. Cutting back on the beef and pork during this period of time is very important.

Crank Up The Chlorophyll: This one surprised me. Does anybody remember the word chlorophyll from science class? It was that word you learned around the time you learned about photosynthesis. Okay…I just revealed I’m a geek. When ingested, chlorophyll (also known as a photonutrient) acts as an odor neutralizer alkalinizing food. It can also help offset the acidifying effect of the typical high-fat, meaty diet that most of us in the United States have become accustomed to.  Some foods that contain a whole heap of chlorophyll are parsley, lime, wheat grass, spinach, collard greens, and kale. To make sure you get an ample amount of chlorophyll in your system, you can buy a bottle of chlorophyll tablets. I did!

To my surprise, I followed the three tips and was weaned off of aluminum deodorant in about four months. I think in the past year I may have worn a deodorant or antiperspirant with aluminum in it maybe twice.  I don’t eat beef or pork but there are times when I go in overtime on the meat. I do notice a difference in the smell of my sweat during those times. I’ll take a chlorophyll tablet for a few days and I notice the smell of my sweat becomes less noticeable.

As you travel the road of healthy living, I want you to think not only about what you put in your body, but also what you put on your body. Topical creams, lotions, deodorants, and antiperspirants can very well affect your health just as much as what you eat. I don’t blog in hopes to change the way you think. I just want to give you something to think about. So give me your feedback folks! I want to hear from you. And be honest, did you take a whif of your armpits when you read this? Hahaha!

Love, Peace, and Sweat,

Monisha R.

Monisha is the author of Runner’s Revelations: How Running Changed My Walk. To learn more about Monisha, her book, and her mission, please visit


  • nessa says:

    Wow, I would of never thought about the things we put on our body to affect our health. Never even crossed myind but since you have broken it down it makes since. By the way…yes i did smell my arm pit while reading this. Lol *thankz for the info*

  • Alexandria says:

    Wow.. I needed this post.. I did take a whif of my armpits as I read it too. But I must say what do you use if anything? Do you still use the crystals or something else? I am going to try this..

  • Monisha says:

    Well for the first four months I used regular baking soda. It’s a little different than just rolling on some deodorant and walking out the door. After that I started using the original scent Tom’s deodorant. I’ve used the Whole Foods brand too. There was this expensive European one I used and it works just like the Whole Foods and Tom’s brand. I haven’t found a brand that is super better than the other. I’ve learned that how much I sweat and the scents my body create has a lot to do with what I eat and how much (or little) water I drink. And for the record, I do bathe on a daily basis, sometimes twice depending on when I workout:)

  • Ileana says:

    This was very informative! After a family member had a health scare some of us tried to switch to aluminum free deodorants and definitely had ‘odor’ issues after a few weeks. I might try again after I get this ‘healthier eating habit’ together:}

  • Sinclaire says:

    Wow. I thought I was going nuts trying to find anyone with the same problem I have!! After dating my new bf we would go out to eat steaks and just devour ourselves. Probably 4 times a week of beef products. I’ve quit eating pork years ago and started again here and there just to get a bite or two of what my bf would feed me!! Suddenly my system was slowing me down. Slower to digest and the smell of musty curry appeared!!!!! At first I thought it was time to swap deodarants so I tried toms organic. Hahahha that did not work at all, the peach scent just made it worse. Then I did Mitchum. Haha uh no!! Waste of money. Then I tried the lemon juice, the baking soda paste, the vinegar half and half with water, the milk of magnesia, the hot towel under armpit, Saran wrapping the pit…….. All results would work two days to five days and boom ” mr curry was back”.

    Not only have I quit on deodarants I have quit on all home remedies. I stopped eating beef and the little pork that I did eat, and started chlorophyll , btw I read this post about a month ago. Now I’m smell free, “MR CURRY FREE” and I feel positive instead of negative!! Now I’m the one to tell people ” I DON’T USE DEODARANTS!!!”

  • Monisha says:

    Way to go Sinclaire! I’m glad you stuck with it. Now that you’re on the other side of the process, you may notice how different things you eat affects the smell of your sweat and skin. Cheers to great health!

  • Jennine says:

    Hi Monisha,
    Thanks for the inspiration – I’m eager to try again after many stinky failures with cold turkey and health brands! I’m slowly transitioning into a greener way of life – it takes time to learn.
    Question: how are the pits when one wears synthetic fibers? I have a lot of lovely clothes that have some or all synthetic fibers (due to durability and ease of care).
    Thanks for reply 🙂

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  • Weston Seegert says:

    Chlorophyll molecules are specifically arranged in and around photosystems that are embedded in the thylakoid membranes of chloroplasts. In these complexes, chlorophyll serves two primary functions. The function of the vast majority of chlorophyll (up to several hundred molecules per photosystem) is to absorb light and transfer that light energy by resonance energy transfer to a specific chlorophyll pair in the reaction center of the photosystems…,’-

    Have a good one

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