Friday, March 20, 2009

Bad breath: Simple Chinese herbs

For bad breath in general, we can use fresh reed rhizome (鲜芦根; Xian Lu Gen). Use large amount of fresh reed rhizome and boil it in 3 litres of water. Consume it as replacement of daily intake of water.

For chronic respiratory diseases that give rise to bad breath, lily bulb (百合; Bai He) and green mung bean (绿豆; Lv Dou) can be boiled into soup for regular consumption. Lily bulb is sweet and slightly cold. It nourishes the lung and clears away heart-fire whereas mung bean is cooling and helps to detox inflammatory factors. This combination is also good for cigarette smokers.

For chronic gastrointestinal problems that give rise to bad breath, fresh hawthorn fruit (生山楂; Sheng Shan Zha) and tangerine peel (陈皮; Chen Pi) are two proper herbs to be used together. Hawthorn fruit, sour and sweet in flavour and warm in property, acts on the spleen and stomach channels to remove retention of food and resolve blood stasis. Tangerine peel, pungent and bitter in flavour, warm in property, has the effects of eliminating dampness and resolving phlegm. Together, they get rid of food retention and dampness that contribute to bad breath. A little rock sugar adds good taste to it.


Cosinensis said...

I really like your article. It includes some really surprising Chinese herbs that even I did not know about.

John J. C. Lew said...

Dear Cosinensis,

You're welcome. Hopefully more and more people will choose to use simple herbal solutions. It's more suitable for biological bodies of us.

John Lew

Lynda Ong said...

Can you tell me what to take for "fung mok"? I have been told something abt a imbalance between internal & external body heat? And that "pak kei" will help. Pse share.

John J. C. Lew said...

Hi Lynda Ong,

You must mean hives or urticaria.

The general body syndrome of hives ranges from external wind heat, deficiency of blood and sometimes deficiency in the Ren channel. Depending of the body type and physical symptoms, prescriptions can vary greatly.

You mentioned Pak Kei, I presume it's Milkvetch root or Astragalus root. It's useful for people with deficiency in Lung energy and sometimes some skin issues.

A prescription can range from 2 herbs to 20 or even 30 herbs. And a face-to-face consultation is necessary for the prescriptions to be given.

The idea of taking one or two herbs for any illness or diseases, without taking account of the body type or syndrome, is not recommended.

Please consult a qualified TCM physician for a face-to-face consultation, for proper diagnosis and prescriptions.

Take care,

Lynda Ong said...

Thanks for the guide.

Anonymous said...

@john is there a pills to eliminate bad breath. nothing gas wirk for me and trust me when I say I've trued everything.

John J. C. Lew said...

Hi Anonymous,

There are many causes and different types of body that may give rise to bad breath. To name a few: Phlegm heat in the stomach, fire due to lack of yin fluid, hyper heat in the lungs, and food stagnation are possible causes of bad breath. And the remedies for them are quite different.

You may wanna visit a TCM physician at your place for better body diagnosis and appropriate treatments.

Good luck.

June Low said...

Read from TCM, that when a person is always hungry and has bad breath, its deal to stomach heat. What are the varies way to solve stomach heat issues? Can the hawthorn fruit and tangerine peel tea, solve it??

John J. C. Lew said...

Hi June,

What you say makes some sense about being hungry easily and having bad breath may be contributed by stomach heat. That's certainly a guided diagnosis. The two herbs that you list are, on the other hand, mostly for food indigestion; not so much for stomach heat or fire.

My advice has always been go see a local TCM practitioner for proper diagnosis and proper herbal prescriptions.

Good luck.