Skin Problems


how to detect and get rid of many skin problems such as

1-Acne (back acne) & (Adult Acne)

 2-Stretch Marks & Pregnancy


4-Undereye circles

5-Dry Skin Fixes 

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Make Yourself a Homemade Salt Scrub ( treatment for dehydrated skin in winter )

Winter is a harsh time for skin. Excessively cold air coupled with lack of humidity in indoor spaces caused by heating can leave skin dehydrated, scaly & patchy. Head to a posh spa & you can treat yourself (for a mere $100-$300) to an all-over body salt scrub. Or why not do-it-yourself for next to nothing? All you need is liquid body soap, a coarse salt & a nice, warm bath.
Difficulty: Easy
Time Required: 10 minutes

Here's How:

  1. Run a warm bath & soak for a good 10 minutes (you can also skip the bath & do this in the shower)
  2. Put on loofah mitts (the softer, the better)
  3. sprinkle a palmful of sea salt on a mitt
  4. mix in liquid body soap
  5. rub mitts together so the salt & soap are mixed together
  6. rub the mixture all over your body, rubbing in a circular motion. Rub harder on tougher areas such as the bottom of your feet, elbows & knees. Avoid your face.
  7. Rinse thoroughly
  8. Follow with a thick moisturizer (we like Shea butter). Avoid alpha hydroxy products



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Skin Problems (treatment of Undereye Circles)

Dark circles are famously annoying and unfortunately, there's no way to get rid of them. However, you have 3 basic options for concealing them:

Option 1: 
Use a proper concealer. 
                                               Test out the best colors at a department store counter or at Sephora. (Tip: Tell the makeup artist you are looking to correct the undereye circles and are testing several different types before purchase). Choose concealer that's a shade lighter than your foundation. And if your circles are very dark, go 2 shades lighter. You might be choosing a concealer that's too light if you are getting a 'raccoon look.'

We find it works best to apply stick concealers with your finger dabbing a few dots under your eyes.

Option 2:
 Invest in a vitamin K-based eye product 
                                                                                    Eye creams such as Vita-K Solution gel can help strengthen capillary walls so dark circles and veins become less visible.

Option 3:
 Laser treatment 
                                    If you have a chronic case of undereye circles, you should contact a doctor about lasers. Lasers can thicken the skin by increasing collagen production, so you are less likely to see veins,

How to Fix Puffy Eyes



Woke up with puffy eyes? While a washcloth soaked in chamomile tea works great, as does the teabag itself applied to puffy bags, I find a bag of frozen vegetables does the trick in less time. Simply place the bag (Real Simple Magazine suggests corn or peas -- I prefer peas)over eyes for a couple minutes and watch the puffiness disappear

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Skin Problems (Undereye Circles)-1

Causes Undereye Circles 
                      Oh if only we could take a magic pill to cause the blue veins under our eyes to recede back into our heads, or the dark circles under our eyes to magically lighten to match the rest of our skin.
Unfortunately, there is no magic pill to combat dark, undereye circles, which you were likely born with. Yes, it's true. Your parents are to blame for your dark undereye circles, according to dermatologist David J. Leffell of Yale School of Medicine, in "O" magazine.
So, now that we have them, is there any way to get rid of them? 

Three Types of Undereye Circles

There are basically three types of undereye circles: 

1. Hyperpigmentation.
                                          Hyperpigmented undereye circles can be dark circles often found in women with darker skin tones (African, East Indian or Latin descent). This is caused by the over-abundance of melanin in skin. 

2. Blue-ish veins.
                                  As we age, the skin around our eyes thins out, causing the veins underneath to show. This is typical in women with lighter skin. 

3. Poor circulation. 
                                       These undereye circles tend to be puffy or baggy. This is usually caused by poor blood flow or water retention under the eye. Large bags that don't recede in time are hereditary.
To determine the cause of your undereye circles, press your thumb on the shadows. If the shadows momentarily lighten, the cause is poor circulation. If they don't lighten, the cause is hyperpigmentation, according to dermatologist Macrene Alexiades-Armenakas of Yale University in the November, 2007, issue of Elle Magazine.

How to Treat Undereye Circles

Dark circles from hyperpigmentation can be treated with lasers in a doctor's office. However, Alexiades-Armenakas warns that lasers don't always work well on darker skin. "The laser may turn on melanocytes to produce more pigment," she says in Elle Magazine. For dark skin, she prefers topical solutions made with kojic acid, such as Skinceuticals Phyto+ gel. Creams with hydroquinone are also commonly used to treat undereye circles. Both kojic acid and hydroquinone brighten hyperpigmented skin, according to "Getting Gorgeous," a book by the editors of InStyle magazine.
If you suffer from puffy eye bags, sleep on your back with your head propped up. You can also treat puffiness with black tea bags. Chill steeped tea bags in the fridge first. Place chilled bags over the eyes. The tannins in black tea help reduce bloat, according to "Confessions of a Beauty Editor," a book written by the editors of Allure magazine.
If bags are constant and never go away, see a doctor for treatment options.

Camouflage Undereye Circles With Makeup



To cosmetically camouflage dark undereye circles, use eye creams that contain mica or other light-diffusing particles. For darker circles, you'll want to use a creamy concealer.
To apply concealer, first prep eye with an eye gel. Dot concealer over the blue veins or dark circles and tap, never rub, concealer into the area surrounding the eye.

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Skin Problems (dry skin)


 fix of dry skin 
            If you suffer from dry skin, consider this remedy: Skip the cleanser (which can be drying) and opt for a bit of Omega-3 oil or Pure Almond Oil (you can find these in any health food store or shop online below). Put a few drop in your palm, mix with warm water (never wash your face in hot water) and then massage into your face & neck. Let sit for a couple minutes then gently wipe face clean with a damp washcloth. (Tip: Never use a washcloth more than two days in a row, they are a breeding ground for bacteria). Follow up with a moisturizer. 

How to Exfoliate the Body

How Much Should I Exfoliate?Women should exfoliate using a scrub once or twice a week. You want to be sure not to overexfoliate or use a product with granules that can tear at the skin (I'm thinking of those hard, rocklike exfoliators you can buy over the counter, avoid those at all costs). Rub the product in a circular motion for 30 seconds & then wash off. If you have oily skin, large pores or acne-prone skin, you can try an at-home microdermabrasion system.

Causes of White Bumps on the Backs of Armshose little white bumps are actually very common & the result of clogged pores in the hair follicles. You'll notice them mainly in winter because of the low humidity in the air. Common spots include arms, buttocks & the backs of legs. So how to get rid of these suckers (actual name is is keratosis pilaris, better know as 'chicken skin')? Exfoliate. Try a loofah or washcloth in the shower or do like our friend Janine and opt for a professional scrub

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Skin Problems (Adult Acne)

If you noticed the acne you had when you were 15 has returned in your 30s, rest assured, you're in good company. One in five women between the ages of 25 and 40 suffer from adult acne. Here are a few facts about adult acne and how to rid your skin of it:

 Fact #1: Acne usually begins with blackheads 
                      Blackheads are not dirt, they're actually the result of oil and dead cells getting trapped in a pore where they block the duct and mix with bacteria. They then turn black when exposed to air. Red pimples develop when blackheads become inflamed and they spread when touched with dirty hands. When the pimple becomes infected, it develops a whitehead or pustule. These can break and cause scars. So how to banish blackheads? Gently, according to San Francisco Seth Matarasso to InStyle Magazine. People tend to scrub too hard which causes inflammation, he says. Instead of a grainy scrub, Matarasso suggests trying an exfoliant with alpha-hydroxy acids. You can also use a salicylic acid cleanser . These chemical products clean out pores better than scrubs. For a great quick fix.

 Fact #2: There are several causes of adult acne                     
                      These are: Stress, bad cosmetics, hormones and birth control pills. Stress causes your oil glands to overcompensate. Bad cosmetics lead to bacteria-laden pores. Hormones cause the sebacuous glands to overact and birth control pills with androgen in them can cause breakouts. To keep breakouts at bay, look for oil-free, non-acnegenic products

 Fact #3: Cheese and chocolate have nothing to do with your acne 
                            Your skin, however, WILL benefit from a good facial. Why? Because acne is not a disease, rather it is a condition of the skin and a good facialist knows exactly what your skin needs: Sulfur, zinc and camphor masks, exfoliation, blackhead extractions and at-home follow-up.

 Fact #4: Don't treat adult acne like the teen kind           
              The products you used as a teenager won't work on adult skin. Here's a 2-step program for cleansing and treating your blemished skin: Step 1: Pick the right cleanser. Look for medicated cleansers with benzoyl peroxide or salicylic acid. Step 2: Exfoliate with a salicylic acid treatment, which will clean out pores. Just don't exfoliate too much or scrub too hard (see the blackhead section above). Two to 3 times a week is perfect.

 Fact #5: Treatment systems have completely cleared up skin on many people
                               Proactiv Solution 3-step System ($40 at is a classic kit that has worked wonders on many. L'Oreal Acne Response Daily Adult Acne Regimen is a 3-step program that is highly recommended.

 Fact #6: The dermatologist will clear your skin up fast
                                   Too many women wait to see a doctor for their skin problems. If you have basic acne, over-the-counter treatments with salicylic acid (there's that magic word again) to unclog pores and benzoyl peroxide to reduce bacteria on skin should do you, but for serious acne, a dermatologist has an arsenal of products to clear up your skin. Retinoids, antibiotics, azelaic acid and birth control pills are all options usually covered by insurance. You might consider laser treatments, but these are more costly (about $500-$2,400). Severe cases are best cleared up by Accutane, which is a 5-month course that is considered the most effective treatment available. It can, however, cause serious birth defects if taken during pregnancy. 

 Fact #7: Yes, those new machines that target acne do work  
                        We were surprised to hear this as well, but the reports are out on machines like Zeno Acne Clearing Device and they are good. They won't help blackheads or deep cystic acne, but they do work for your general run-of-the-mill pimples, according to the April, 2006, issue of Glamour. So how do they work? The Zeno, which is a handheld machine that looks like an iPod, works by driving heat through a pimple. The heat kills the bacteria and supposedly improves blood circulation to the affected area so it heals faster. Clinical trials show 90% of pimples treated with Zeno disappeared or were significantly reduced within 24 hours. 

Skin Problems (back acne)

‘Bacne’ is another term for back acne or body acne. It tends to form on the back and the buttocks and can take several forms: pimples, blackheads, pustules and cysts, which are painful and form deep under the skin's surface. 

What Causes Bacne? 



There is no scientific evidence for what causes back acne.
According to an article on the Acne Resource Center back acne tends to occur around puberty when the sebaceous glands, which produce sebum, start functioning. When too much sebum is produced pores and hair follicles can become clogged attracting bacteria. This can lead to acne.
Stress, oily or fatty foods, excessive sweating and even heredity do not seem to play a role in the causes of back acne, according to the Acne Resource Center. There is also no proof back acne is developed from tight clothing, excessive sweating and heavy backpacks (although it is possible 'bacne' is exacerbated by this).

How to Treat Back acne?

For milder versions of back or body acne a topical 10 percent benzoyl peroxide cream or gel will suffice. Cysts should be treated by a dermatologist.
To treat mild back acne: 

Step 1 
            Wash the back with an anti-bacterial cleanser formulated for the face, Stay away from regular soap. Let skin dry.
Step 2 
            Follow with a 10 percent benzoyl peroxide gel or cream. Let dry.
Step 3 (optional) 
                             Some experts suggest using the benzoyl peroxide in tandem with an alpha hydroxy treatment such as Alpha Hydrox Enhanced Lotion is optimal.
For severe back acne, consult a dermatologist for prescription treatment. Cysts can be treated in the office.

How to Prevent Back Acne

Exfoliation is a great way to get rid of dead skin cells that tend to build up on the back, buttocks and back of the arms. Use a sugar scrub (milder than salt scrubs) in the shower on a weekly basis.


How to Protect Face Skin in the Winter

Your Face Needs Extra Care in Winter

Cold, winter wind can wreak havoc on skin. To keep your face supple in winter, apply moisturizer to your face before going out into the cold and cover your face with a scarf in harsh wind.
If you have super, duper sensitive skin, consider avoiding rinsing your face with tap water, which can contain harsh minerals that are especially drying to the skin (Dr. Dennis Gross once said New York water contains a lot of harsh minerals, while Seattle water, for example, does not. Go figure).
Instead, do like the French and cleanse skin in winter with a cleaner that does not require rinsing, like Pond's Cold Cream. You can also rinse with special water that contains selenium and chamomile, suggests beauty expert Valerie Monroe in the September, 2006 issue of O, the Oprah Magazine.
Extra tip: Try spritzing your face with facial water before applying moisturizer several times during the day in the office. The water locks in moisture and leaves skin refreshed even in harsh office heat.
Protect Face Skin in the Winter

Don't Forget Your Lips

Protect lips in the Winter


Licking your lips will not moisturize them and instead will help dry them out. Lips retain less moisture than other parts of the body, so they tend to dry out more quickly. A simple lip balm helps, as does my all-time favorite lip trick learned in high school from "Seventeen" magazine: moisturize your lips with Vaseline. Take a toothbrush and "brush" your lips in a circular motion. This will remove dead flakes and leave your lips soft and supple.

Consider Fish Oil Pills 

Fish Oil Pills


New studies show omega-3 fish oil pills may soothe super dry skin. Patients who took fish oils pills in a study reported in Allure magazine, saw significant results within a few weeks. "You can see, within six weeks, the skin, hair and nails improve markedly," according to skin expert Dr. Andrew Weil in Allure. Ever since I started taking fish oil pills in March, 2007, I have received numerous compliments on how amazing my skin looks. So there you have it.

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Skin Problems & Pregnancy

Pregnancy is one of the most beautiful times in a woman's life, however, you might not feel so gorgeous when you're battling a few of motherhood's downfalls, including stretch marks, undereye circles and problem skin. Here we run down a few solutions to typical pregnancy problems.

Problem #1: Stretch marks 

Stretch marks in pregnancy


If you are genetically prone to stretch marks, there's not much you can do to prevent them. Stretch marks occur when skin grows too fast for its fibers to handle. These can tear, leaving violet-colored marks. To help improve your skin's elasticity, you can rub your belly several times a day in a circular motion with creams or oils that contain cocoa butter, vitamin E or sweet almond oil.

Problem #2: Brown spots 



Pregnant women are susceptible to splotchy pigmentation. These brown spots are caused by hormones and sun exposure and are aggravated by the sun. 
To prevent brown spots, use a sunscreen with at least 15 SPF. To lighten dark patches you can try topical vitamin C serum under moisturizer.

Problem #3: Lifeless Hair Color 

hair care during pregnancy


While it's true hormonal changes during pregnancy will make hair stronger and shinier than ever, hair benefits usually kick in after the first trimester, according to Marie Claire's, "Hair & Makeup" book. In the first three months, oil can be oily due to overactive sebaceous glands. To battle oily hair, Marie Claire suggests washing hair daily with a mild shampoo. Some women experience dry hair during pregnancy. Using a moisturizer daily and a deep conditioning treatment weekly will help.
Many pregnant women avoid getting their hair colored during pregnancy, however, medical experts agree it's safe to color your hair after your first trimester. Consider highlights over a full color. Many women opt for vegetable dyes during pregnancy. The fewer chemicals to touch your scalp, the better.

Problem #4: Dry skin and acne

These problems are also effects of hormones. The only thing you can really do is moisturize nd exfoliate daily. . Keep in mind that this is NOT the time to use products like Retin-A, salicyclic acid or benzoyl peroxide.

Problem #5: Dark undereye circles

There's no real way to fix undereye circles,  for covering them up. Use a proper concealer

Dark undereye circles in pregnancy

Problem #6: Sore muscles

Prenatal massages are great for expectant moms but wait until after the first trimester. Massages relax both mom and baby. You can expect work on your lower back.

Problem #7: Varicose veins



The American Institute of Preventive Medicine offers these suggestions to help prevent them from forming: wear elastic support stockings, elevate legs when resting and take long or short walks every 45 minutes during long flights or car rides. Avoid standing for long periods and don't cross legs when sitting (like you can do this when heavily pregnant!).

Problem #8: Aching legs and feet

To ease foot soreness, soak feet in a cool bath sprinkled with a capful of Epsom salts, then follow with a foot cream with menthol. You might also invest in special medical socks that keep fluid from buiding up. 


Skin Problems(Stretch Marks causes and treatment )

Stretch marks are at best, fine pink lines that appear around the fourth month of pregnancy. They can appear on the arms, thighs, buttocks, breasts and most commonly the abdomen. 

They occur in 50 to 90% of women for a variety of reason and can range from the silvery pink color mentioned above to bright red or purple lines.

*So what causes them to form in the first place? The weight gain is stretching the dermal collagen and elastin beyond breaking point and what you see are the scars formed as the fibres separate.
*As I mentioned above, stretch marks are forming deep within the skin, so massaging the skin with oils and creams will make you feel better, but unfortunately, you can't prevent them from occurring. 

How to get rid of stretch marks

Technically, no.  However, there are things you can do to greatly fade their appearance. 
 Ways to fade stretch marks:
+ Laser therapy 

                                    uses intense wavelengths of light to help grow collagen, elastin or melanin in your skin.

+ Tretinoin cream 
                                       (also called Retin-A, Renova, Avitaca) can help rebuild collagen and make the stretch marks look more like your normal skin. Just make sure you are treating the stretch marks early on, when they are still pinkish or purple.

+ Microdermabrasion 
                                               involves a device that blows tiny crystals onto your skin.  These crystals gently polish your skin’s surface.  This is an option for older stretch marks that have faded to white.
Are there natural ways to reduce their appearance?
Yes! But it’s not cocoa butter – even though it’s been commonly associated with getting rid of stretch marks, this study proved it’s ineffective in preventing and treating stretch marks.   Try vitamin E instead – this study showed that pregnant women who used a cream with a form of vitamin E in it developed fewer marks than those given a placebo. Here’s a great homemade recipe to reduce and prevent stretch marks:

DIY Stretch Mark Reducing Oil:
2 tbsp vitamin E oil
½ cup jojoba oil
½ cup almond oil
¼ cup sugar

Pour oils into a container and shake vigorously.  Add sugar and gently massage over affected areas daily.  This works best for prevention or right after they develop!

Vitamin E promotes skin elasticity, jojoba oil is full of fatty acids that easily penetrate deeply into the pores, almond oil gives a big dose of moisture and sugar exfoliates. 

*Actually, the amount of stretch marks you will have is genetically decided for you. If your mother and grandmother had stretch marks, chances are, you will too. 

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Skin Problems(Cellulite causes and treatment)

what is it with getting older?


 Cottage cheese pops up first on the backs of thighs, shows up later on the arms and eventually even on the calves (we saw a picture a couple years ago in US Weekly of Uma Thurman's cellulite calves!). 

So what is cellulite and how to get rid of it?

Contrary to popular belief, cellulite is not caused by excess weight. It's all in your genes, which explains why even skinny women can have it (hello Uma!). Cellulite is caused by clumps of fat cells that push up against surrounding fibrous connective tissue. "The inherent thinning of skin's support structure makes fat cells more obvious," according to *David J. Goldberg, MD, in the September, 2007, issue of Elle Magazine. This is what gives you dimples and what appears to be clumps of fat under your skin.

So how to get rid of it? 
 Unfortunately, there's not much you can do ... for now. Much research is currently underway on laser therapies, but none of have proven completely viable (or we'd be lining up at our local dermatologists, with me heading up the line).
Until a "cure" is found, there are some options which some swear are minimally successful: 

1. Exercise.
                    Some personal trainers claim exercise can cut down on cellulite. Others suggest building up the muscles in the back of the leg and in the buttocks can mask cellulite. 

2. Caffeine.

                  Caffeine, the active ingredient in many cellulite creams, works by pushing water out of fat cells, temporarily reducing the appearance of dimples. 

3. Treatments.

                         Some people have found minimal success with Endermologie (not cheap at about $100 a session). This spa treatment rolls and suctions the skin breaking up fat tissue. The results can be significant, according to InStyle Magazine, but short-term. 

4. Camouflage. 
                             Hide dimples with a fake tan. Self tanner darkens skin, effectively camouflaging dimples. 

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Bad Breath, causes and treatment

Bad breath

What is Bad Breath?

Bad breath (halitosis) is a condition characterized by consistent unpleasant breath odor.
Many conditions, such as postnasal drip, chronic bronchitis, uncontrolled diabetes, respiratory tract infection, liver or kidney disease, and digestive disorders such as acid reflux can cause bad breath. In the majority of people with bad breath, however, the problem is in the mouth and is often caused by improper dental hygiene, periodontal disease or dry mouth.
What causes the actual odor? Food particles and dead cells in the mouth collect bacteria which thrive in enviroments that lack oxygen, such as the back of the tongue and deep gum pockets. These bacteria produce odor-causing volatile sulfur compounds such as hydrogen sulfide. 

1- causes of Bad Breath 
                                 Most of your bad breath problems can be traced bad to poor oral hygiene. 
Bad Breath due to poor oral hygiene.

Bacteria that builds up on the back of your tongue or in between your teeth is the main culprit. These bad boys like to breed on the tongue and in crevices caused by gum disease, cavities and poorly fitting bridges or crowns. According to my dentist, bad breath can also be caused by antihistamines, nasal sprays and some anti-depressants. They can dry up your saliva, which leads to bad breath. This is why your friend's breath will smell more when she's sick. So how to fix? Make sure to floss daily, brush your teeth thoroughly & scrape your tongue with a tongue scrapper (bought at drugstores). If this doesn't work? See your doctor.

 2-How to detect if you Have Bad Breath?
wrong detection of bad breath

                                  Skip the old method of blowing into your hands and smelling your breath. Instead, lick the back of your hand, let the saliva dry, then take a whiff. What you smell is your true breath.
How to detect if you Have Bad Breath

How to detect if you Have Bad Breath?

 3-Home Remedies for Bad Breath

Home Remedies for Bad Breath

Home Remedies for Bad Breath

Home Remedies for Bad Breath

Home Remedies for Bad Breath

Brushing at least twice a day and flossing daily can help to remove odor-causing bacteria. Before trying any natural remedies for bad breath, it's important to visit your dentist to have your teeth examined and cleaned. If a cause isn't identified, consult your doctor for further investigation. Here are some home remedies to consider:

  • Drink tea. Preliminary research suggests that compounds in both green tea and black tea called polyphenols may stop the growth of bacteria responsible for bad breath. Polyphenols may also prevent existing bacteria from producing malodorous compounds such as hydrogen sulfide. Both green and black tea have polyphenols.
  • Try a mouthwash containing zinc ions. Zinc appears to directly neutralize malodorous sulfur compounds and improve breath. It's found in several health food store mouthwashes as well as some drug store brands.

  • Try a mouthwash that contains essential oils. Preliminary studies suggest that essential oils, which are plant oils, may help to reduce bad breath. One study compared an essential oil mouthwash containing tea tree oil, peppermint oil and lemon oil to a standard mouthwash and found that the level of volatile sulfur compounds was significantly less after the essential oil mouthwash compared to the conventional mouthwash. It's best to use a commercially-prepared product (check the health food store) rather than buying essential oils and making your own mouthwash. If in doubt, consult your dentist.

  • Use herbs to freshen your breath. Chew on a small sprig of fresh rosemary, parsley, spearmint, or tarragon for up to a minute. 
  • Avoid mouthwashes with alcohol. Alcohol can dry out the mouth, which contributes to bad breath.
  • Use a tongue scraper, which helps to remove dead cells, food particles and bacteria from the tongue. A tongue scaper is a special plastic instrument found in drug stores and some health food stores, that costs several dollars. In Ayurveda, a thick coating on the tongue is called "ama" and is thought to be caused by improper or incomplete digestion. Tongue cleaning with a scaper is recommended as a daily regimen to remove ama. The key is to do it gently and to rinse your mouth thoroughly afterward. If you can't find a tongue scraper, use a toothbrush to clean your tongue.
  • Drink plenty of fluids. Drinking water and other fluids will help keep your mouth moist. Another reason drinking fluids might help: In traditional Chinese medicine, bad breath is often the result of excess heat in the stomach. Water, soup and watery fruits and vegetables, such as cucumber, are thought to help to rebalance the body.
  • According to traditional Chinese medicine, bitter foods, such as Belgian endive and many dark green leafy vegetables are also believed to help stomach heat. Certain foods, such as coffee, alcohol, sugar, milk and fried or spicy foods are thought to worsen the problem.
  • Snack on crunchy fruits and vegetables such as apples, celery, carrots or jicama. Crunchy foods can help remove food, bacteria and plaque from teeth.
  • Get help managing stress. Many people have bad breath that doesn't have a clearly identifiable cause. One small preliminary study found that in healthy young men with good oral hygiene and general health, stress increased the production of volatile sulfur compounds in the mouth. 
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