During the safe at home orders we are continuing with online classes through Facebook live here.
What is Wellness Education? A world of knowledge in your hands!
A series of classes developed by Jennifer, Mother Jai, Lawson. They are typically held in Assisted and Independent Living Communities. They cover the basics of physical, mental, emotional and spiritual wellness; herbal remedies and aromatherapy; self-care and alternative therapies. Jennifer provides lots of information on ways to develop your personal wellness.
Jennifer has compiled information from multiple reputable sources and put it together for ease of use. These books include the information discussed during classes. There are three books so far. Each covering different aspects of personal wellness.
Herbal Remedies – 300 pages of info on common herbs, flowers, and spices. Including their uses, benefits, side effects, and interactions. Recipes for preparation, storage and use are also included.
Skin, Hair & Nails – over 100 pages of everything you need to know to take care of your skin and all of its conditions. Plus information on caring for your hair and nails.
Wellness Education – over 400 pages of health and wellness from head to toe. Including alternative therapies, fitness, anatomy and physiology, and self-care. Instructions and full color images are included.
The largest organ of the body, with a total area of about 20 square feet. The skin protects us from microbes and the elements, helps regulate body temperature, and permits the sensations of touch, heat, and cold. Skin has three layers:
The epidermis, the outermost layer of skin, provides a waterproof barrier and creates our skin tone.
The dermis, beneath the epidermis, contains tough connective tissue, hair follicles, and sweat glands.
The deeper subcutaneous tissue (hypodermis) is made of fat and connective tissue.
The skin’s color is created by special cells called melanocytes, which produce the pigment melanin. Melanocytes are located in the epidermis.
Your skin’s the barrier between the outside world and the rest of you. It constantly renews itself and produces sebum (oil) to ward off contaminants, pollutants, and microbes. Alas, sometimes it goes under or overboard and you end up with clogged pores that can harbor bacteria and lead to breakouts and infections.
Dry Skin and Infection
To restore your skin to good health, you must actively replenish the moisture down to the deeper layers, not just cover the skin. Moisturized, intact skin is your body’s best defense against bacteria and viruses because it is a natural barrier that keeps moisture in and infectious agents out.
Mother Jai’s Skin Care Recommendations:
Skip the glycerin soap when it comes to cleaning your face – all facial cleansers should be glycerin-free.
Avoid petroleum based ‘moisturizers’, they only trap moisture, they do not nourish or provide moisture to the skin.
Breathing, sweating and most of your other bodily processes remove water from your cells. That is why it is so important to drink at least a half-gallon (2 liters) of water every day.
Essential fatty acids are crucial to keeping your skin looking healthy. Omega-6 – poultry, grains, cooking oils; Omega-3 – cold-water fish (salmon, sardines), kidney beans, walnuts, and spinach Gamma linolenic acid – plant oils.
Beneficial to both your body and skin, antioxidants are crucial for healthy skin cells. Antioxidants fight free radicals, which can otherwise damage healthy cells.
Eat a healthy, well-balanced diet. Findings from a few studies suggest that eating plenty of fresh fruits and vegetables may help prevent damage that leads to premature skin aging. Findings from research studies also suggest that a diet containing lots of sugar or other refined carbohydrates can accelerate aging.
Drink less alcohol. Alcohol is rough on the skin. It dehydrates the skin, and in time, damages the skin. This can make us look older.
If you smoke, stop. Smoking greatly speeds up how quickly skin ages. It causes wrinkles and a dull, sallow complexion.
Exercise most days of the week. Moving the body and stretching the skin regularly tones and strengthens it, improving tone and tightening wrinkles. Findings from a few studies suggest that moderate exercise can improve circulation and boost the immune system. This, in turn, may give the skin a more-youthful appearance.
Wash your face once a day and after sweating heavily. Perspiration, especially when wearing a hat or helmet, irritates the skin, so you want to wash your skin as soon as possible after sweating.
Apply a natural facial moisturizer every day. Moisturizers provides moisture to our skin, giving it a more youthful appearance.
Stop using skin care products that sting or burn. When your skin burns or stings, it means your skin is irritated. Irritating your skin can make it look older.
Exfoliating is essential for skin strength and elasticity. Removing dead skin cells on a regular basis stimulates regeneration of healthy tissue below. It prevents clogged pores, rough and scaly skin, and helps moisturizers absorb more effectively.
Get some sun every day if possible. The sun in moderation does not cause cancer. Too many sunburns and overuse of sunscreen cause skin cancer.
Natural Make-Up Remover
Microfiber actually works great for this too and removes even mascara without soap or oils. Plain olive or coconut oil will also remove mascara (even waterproof) and will remove other make-up as well but isn’t as ideal if you have oily skin. For oily skin- Liquid Castille soap in water will remove makeup without adding oils to the skin or stripping the natural ones.
Mother Jai’s Coconut Oil Soap – only organic coconut oil, distilled water and sodium hydroxide (lye). Just like the good ole days! Truly natural and nourishing soap. Great for oily skin types.
Mother Jai’s Skin Cleanser/Toner – yes it does both. Made of distilled organic witch hazel, organic apple cider vinegar, everclear, distilled water, and essential oils.
Lotions and Moisturizers
For most people, pure coconut oil is all that is needed for moisturizing the face. It is naturally full of collagen supporting lauric acid and is easily absorbed by the skin. Even for oily and acne prone skin, coconut oil’s natural anti-bacterial properties make it a great option. Sunflower oil can be a less greasy and less expensive option.
Mother Jai’s Moisture Balm – coconut oil, olive oil and sunflower oil blended together for a non-greasy and deeply moisturizing lotion without any water or preservatives.
A sugar/oil scrub is great for most skin types when extra exfoliation is needed. Just mix equal parts oil (coconut, olive, sunflower, etc.) and sugar (white or brown) or Epsom salt and use as a whole-body exfoliator. For more oily skin, plain baking soda can be used to exfoliate skin and remove blackheads or dirt.
Mother Jai’s Coffee Scrub – coffee grounds, raw cane sugar, distilled water and Everclear come together to exfoliate and tone skin naturally.
Mother Jai’s Charcoal Mudd Mask – activated charcoal, arrowroot powder, and baking soda blended with water and/or honey for an amazing toning, clearing, and antibacterial mask.
Mother Jai’s Mineral Milk Bath – buttermilk, Epsom salt, oatmeal and baking soda blended for exfoliation and nourishment. Use as a body scrub or soak in the tub.
There are a ton of anti-aging products available, but the best options are the ones you take internally. All of the collagen products that are supposed to firm up skin don’t take into account that collagen must be produced internally and is too large to absorb through the skin. To promote natural collagen production use coconut or sunflower oil as a moisturizer and take Gelatin or Arrowroot, Fermented Cod Liver Oil/Butter Blend or eat Sardines, and Vitamin C or eat oranges to support natural Collagen production internally.
Mother Jai’s Face Serum – deeply nourishing to skin with safflower, sunflower and MCT oils. Use after cleansing and toning to hydrate and protect skin.
Mother Jai’s Tightening oil/balm/toner – collagen building and skin tightening blends are made with tea tree, frankincense, and geranium essential oils. Strengthens collagen, shrinks pores, smooths lines, and softens skin naturally.
Free Radical and Antioxidants
Free radicals are atoms or molecules with one missing electron. They can be caused by exposure to pollutants/contaminants or created naturally by our bodies over time. Over time, they can cause a wide range of damage (including heart disease and cancer) by “stealing” electrons from important cellular structures.
Antioxidants are substances which can freely, safely ‘donate’ an electron. They make atoms/molecules stable again by neutralizing the free radical.
Vitamin C: It’s vital in maintaining healthy skin. It’s an important part of collagen production and has antioxidant properties that can limit/reduce damage caused by excess sun exposure. Collagen is part of your skin’s support structure and, when it’s healthy, prevents and reduces wrinkles.
Vitamin E: Sunflower oil is one of the best natural oils for skin care because it’s especially rich in Vitamin E, and Vitamin E’s a top antioxidant. It’s also been shown to help reduce inflammation and moisturize dry or sunburned skin, lessening premature signs of aging.
Vitamin K: This vitamin plays a critical role in a variety of systems, from blood to bones. In skin care, vitamin K plays a major role in wrinkle reduction by preventing the hardening of elastin, the stretchy protein that gives healthy skin its soft, springy texture.
Omega-3, 6 & 9 (Essential Fatty Acids): In addition to Omega-3 and Omega-6, high-oleic sunflower oil contains Omega-9. All three of these monounsaturated fatty acids (MUFAs) help prevent and reduce skin inflammation, protect against infection, and reduce signs of aging caused by sun exposure.
Amino Acids: These are the building blocks of the proteins you need to survive. High-oleic sunflower oil contains a lot of them, and cold-pressing helps preserve them (they’re easily rendered unusable by heat). Think of amino acids as fuel for your skin’s natural renewal process: as cells divide to produce collagen, elastin, new skin cells, and other components of healthy skin, they need enough amino acids “in the tank” to continue functioning properly.
Natural Skin Care
Macadamia nut oil (majestic macadamia trees originated in Australia and are now grown worldwide) is a light, non-greasy healing and regenerative, stable oil. Macadamia nut oil delivers omega-7 and vitamins A and E, and is a protein-rich ultra-moisturizing elixir. This plant oil easily absorbs into skin, scalp and hair due to its uncanny ability to mimic the body’s own natural oils and its high palmitoleic acid content. Other major benefits include UV barrier protection from excessive heat, wind, hair color oxidation and sun and chemical damage. Use generously as a body cream for all skin types; it’s especially beneficial for mature, aging, dry complexions. Renew scalp and hair by massaging in one tablespoon, wrap with a warm towel and shower cap for 15 minutes. Follow with a light shampoo and cool rinse.
Coconut oil is often referred to as “the healthiest oil on earth.” Its essential proteins and capric and lauric acids fight wrinkles, and tone and tighten skin while nourishing healthy hair. As nature’s richest source of MCFAs (medium-chain fatty acids) coconut oil is easily absorbed by the body, strengthening your skin’s connective tissues therefore also promoting a healthy scalp, and reinforcing lackluster hair strands caused by sun, heat and chemical damage. For a special scalp and hair treatment, massage in one tablespoon and then wrap with a warm towel and shower cap for 15 minutes. Follow with light shampoo and cool rinse.
Sweet almond oil, containing vitamins A, B1, B2, B6 and E, is an all-natural beauty treatment for all skin, scalp and hair types. Its anti-aging properties naturally and visibly plump, fill and moisturize your skin. While its B6 benefits are known to promote healthy hair growth – therefore stimulating and rejuvenating the scalp – its fatty acids and mineral content of magnesium, iron and unsaturated triglycerides provides nourishment to the hair.
Jojoba oil (grown in Northwestern Mexico, California, and Arizona) contains micro-elements such as zinc, copper, silicon, iodine, chromium, and vitamins E and B. It closely resembles your own skin sebum and your skin’s own lubricating medium, giving jojoba a natural affinity to the skin and scalp. It easily absorbs without making the skin feel greasy or tacky and it does not clog pores. Jojoba oil has exceptional skin-softening properties, as well as the ability to minimize fine lines and wrinkles, promoting suppleness and rejuvenation. Try adding a few drops of jojoba oil to your anti-aging creams, body lotions and conditioners, but the oil also stands well on its own for skin, hair and nail care.
Grapeseed oil (derived from the seeds of a grape) is a very light non-greasy antioxidant that protects skin from free radicals and premature aging. It is loaded with EFAs, proanthocyanidins (known as OPCs) and flavonoid complexes that are known to play a role in the enhancement of collagen and the maintenance of elastin. Grapeseed oil is a great conditioner for the scalp, hair and nails. Use a few drops and massage into desired area for its moisture-retentive properties.
Apricot kernel oil is rich in potent antioxidants and protective fatty acids. The kernel of the apricot has even been studied for its anti-cancer properties after a particular nutrient called laetrile or vitamin B 17 was found to play a powerful role in killing cancer cells. The kernels also possess antimicrobial properties, which extend the shelf life of this oil to about 6-9 months. This oil is prized for its ultra-light and easily absorbed molecular structure. It is one of the least pore-clogging natural oils and is a great choice for those with oily or acne prone skin as well as those who do not like a greasy after feel. Its anti-inflammatory properties also make it a good choice for those who suffer from acne or rosacea.
Hazel nut oil is healing to the scalp and can help promote re-growth of hair. A few drops massaged into the scalp and allowed to absorb in before a light shampoo and cool rinse. Its benefits are increased twice over when combined with rosemary leaves or essential oil.
Applying Oils to the Skin – When applying a single oil or oil blend to the skin, fill the palm with a teaspoon of oil at a time and always start at the bottom of the application area and spread the oil in an upward motion.
Making Your Own Natural Skin Care Products
The first step in making your own skincare is to choose the right ingredients. There are so many wholesome foods and other all-natural ingredients to choose from that make excellent skincare products.
Avocado has amazing moisturizing properties, which makes it especially excellent for dry skin. The healthy fats and other beneficial nutrients in avocado help to prevent premature wrinkling and reduce inflammation. In addition, many facial care experts recommend using avocado oil, since it closely resembles our skin’s own natural oils.
Baking Soda works well as a natural means for exfoliating dead skin cells, leaving your face smooth and clean. In addition, baking soda’s slightly antiseptic properties can help alleviate breakouts.
Egg Whites help to tighten skin, giving your face a healthy glow while diminishing the look of fine lines. Egg whites also help to remove dead skin cells and draw excess oil from the pores while tightening them.
Fresh Fruits often are used in facial products because they’re rich in nutrients that aid in healthy skin. For example, papaya helps to moisturize and even-out skin tone. Strawberries function as a mild alpha hydroxyl acid helping to exfoliate skin, and the antioxidants in blueberries help to hydrate and repair dry damaged skin.
Honey is a wonderful friend to your skin. Its soothing anti-inflammatory properties are perfect for any skin type. Full of B vitamins and polyphenols, honey protects skin from damaging free radicals which helps to reduce wrinkles and encourages the formation of new skin cells. In addition, the antibacterial and antimicrobial properties of honey naturally help acne-prone skin to heal and clear.
Yogurt is a common ingredient used in homemade facial masks. It helps to absorb excess oil and makes your skin feel tighter and smoother. It also helps even out skin tone and has anti-aging properties that help fight free radicals.
Washing your hands is essential to removing bacteria and viruses from your skin. The type of soap is important – bar soap is made with lye and liquid soap is a low grade detergent with ‘antibacterial’ chemicals added. Sodium Hydroxide (lye) used in saponification of fats for making soap is known to kill bacteria by breaking down the phospholipid bilayer that make up their cell wall. Once the cell wall is open the cell bleeds out and dies. Detergents do not kill bacteria they simply emulsify organic material for removal from cloth, surfaces or skin.
Alcohol Derived from Petroleum
The problem with ‘antibacterial’ chemicals is that they kill ‘good’ bacteria too. These ‘good’ bacteria are essential to our life; we have healthy bodies due to the symbiotic relationship we have with ‘good’ bacteria. Antibiotics and alcohol based antibacterials indiscriminately kill all bacteria and viruses. This leads to over sanitation or overkill of bacteria.
Over sanitation is one cause of the spread of infection in children and adults. If we kill all the bacteria on/in ourselves and on the surfaces of our homes then we directly affect our immune system’s ability to defend us. Our immunity is dependent on bacteria to function properly, these bacteria live within and around us for a reason. When we indiscriminately kill all the bacteria, we kill what we need as well.
Alcohol based hand sanitizers and air sprays are the leading cause of this problem. Alcohol at 60% concentration or stronger kills all bacteria, good and bad. Harming our internal environment and reducing our immune function. Also the companies that produce these products cannot guarantee their effectiveness because the products strength decreases the longer it sits on store shelves or in back-stock warehouses. This is especially true of the sanitizing wipes. They have been tested and proven to be completely ineffective after only 6 months of storage. So how long do they sit it warehouses before placed on a shelf for you to purchase? At least 3 months, sometimes more with companies like Walmart that purchase huge amounts of product at once to gain a discount.
Now that we’ve covered that let’s take a look at what we can do to prevent infection in ourselves and our homes without these man-made, chemical based antibacterials and sanitizers.
Mechanical protection like masks and gloves are beneficial when outside of your personal environment but must be removed prior to entering your home or car to prevent bringing infection in. Although paper masks do little to prevent you from breathing in small particles like bacteria, they do help in reducing the spread by slowing the speed of your breath (and mucus) as it comes out of your mouth and thus reducing the distance that your breath travels. Gloves only prevent bacteria from touching the skin of your hands. So if you touch your mask or face to adjust with the gloves on you just spread everything you’ve touched onto yourself, destroying the purpose of wearing them in the first place. These tools can be beneficial if used properly.
We have the tools for defense. Now how about a stronger healthier body capable of preventing infection all by itself.
First and foremost we need sleep. Not just a certain number of hours of sleep but a deep restful sleep that allows the body to regenerate. If you’re not sleeping well, then your body is not as strong and healthy as it could be. Which does put you at a higher risk for infection.
The next most important is your diet. The type of nutrition you get greatly affects your immune function and ability to prevent infection. Brightly colored fruits and vegetables are more nutrient dense, so they offer more nutrients that the body can use to build strong immune cells.
Sun, Air, Nature & Exercise
Another important factor to consider is your outdoor exposure. Not just sunshine but also fresh air, plant life, dirt and wildlife are beneficial to our physical and mental health. Exercise is also very important for maintaining a healthy immune system. Movement alone stimulates ‘good’ hormones that make the body feel good and be more productive. Spending time outdoors, no matter what you are doing, is going to help boost your immune function.
Regarding the sun; it is essential for proper vitamin D balance in the body. Which in turn is essential for all hormone and immune cell function throughout the body. All you need is at least 10 minutes of direct sunlight on your skin to produce sufficient vitamin D for the day. In other words, there is no reason to get a sun burn. There are exceptions to this at higher latitudes, due to the angle of the suns rays.
Other options for preventing infection naturally include Aromatherapy, Herbal Remedies, Supplements and Skin Care.
Aromatherapy: using concentrated aromatic compounds taken directly from plants with water distillation, alcohol extraction or fat absorption and used externally either through inhalation on absorption through the skin to nourish the body and support healthy function.
Herbal Remedies: dried plant materials prepared in various ways for the purpose of healing the body and reversing the cause of illness and infection through nutrition instead of chemical intervention. Herbs, spices and flowers provide nutrients that are not commonly found in foods commonly consumed everyday.
Check out Mother Jai’s Aromatherapy products and Herbal Remedies.
Bath & Body Oils – 2oz Bottle
Add natural moisture and aroma to any bath. Simply pour and enjoy!
Supplements: concentrated extracts of plants and minerals for the purpose of nourishing the body and providing nutrients not commonly found in every day foods. Beware of overuse with these large doses of plant compounds. You can end up feeling worse than better if you’re using too many supplements.
Skin Care: besides our nose, our skin is our next whole-body defense against infection. If it is dry or cracked, anywhere, it is susceptible to invasion through the openings in the top layer. Soft and supple, moisturized skin is the best protection against external invasion.
The composition of the products you put on your skin have a dramatic effect on your skin’s health. Petroleum is not moisturizing, it is coating. Coated skin does not breathe or exchange gases with its environment, thus decreasing its function of toxin removal and electrolyte balance in the body. Sunscreen reduces or prevents vitamin D formation by the skin, thus reducing or preventing vitamin D to be available to be used in the body for essential hormone production and immune function. Most sunscreens also contain petroleum.
Magnesium: essential for cellular function throughout the body. As we consume fewer strong tasting, magnesium rich foods, like onions and garlic, the less magnesium we have for bodily function. Epsom salt and magnesium oil are two great ways to get more magnesium into the skin.
Mother Jai’s provides fitness classes for people who are less capable. Jennifer created these unique classes for people who want exercise but cannot stand or maintain their balance while moving. They are various full body warm-up and exercise routines that can be done from any chair, wheelchair, or even the couch. Anyone of any ability can participate and enjoy these exercises.
Jennifer has been instructing Senior Fitness classes in Adult Day Programs, Nursing Home, Independent and Assisted Living Communities since 2013. She is an ACE Certified Group Fitness Instructor, Silver Sneakers Approved and Certified Instructor and RenewActive endorsed instructor. She also holds a Integrative Aromatherapy Certification and a Bachelor’s of Science in Integrative Therapies.
Join Jennifer, Mother Jai, Lawson on YouTube for recorded videos of all of her routines.
Body odor (or B.O., bromhidrosis, osmidrosis or ozochrotia) is a perceived unpleasant smell our bodies can give off when bacteria that live on the skin break down sweat into acids – some say it is the smell of bacteria growing on the body, but it really is the result of bacteria breaking down protein into certain acids.
Body odor usually becomes evident if measures are not taken when a human reaches puberty – 14-16 years of age in females and 15-17 years of age in males. People who are obese, those who regularly eat spicy foods, as well as individuals with certain medical conditions, such as diabetes, are more susceptible to having body odor.
Find a great all natural deodorizing spraybelow.
Aroma Spray – 2oz Mister
Water based sprays with 10% essential oils for personal Aromatherapy.
Sweat itself is virtually odorless to humans; it is the rapid multiplication of bacteria in the presence of sweat and what they do (break sweat down into acids) that eventually causes the unpleasant smell. The smell is perceived as unpleasant, many believe, because most of us have been brought up to dislike it. Body odor is most likely to occur in our feet, groin, armpits, genitals, pubic hair and other hair, belly button, anus, behind the ears, and to some (lesser) extent on the rest of our skin.
Body odor can have a nice and specific smell to the individual, and can be used – especially by dogs and other animals – to identify people. Each person’s unique body odor can be influenced by diet, gender, health, and medication.
Two types of acid are commonly present when there is body odor:
Propionic acid (propanoic acid) is commonly found in sweat – propionibacteria break amino acids down into propionic acid. Propionibacteria live in the ducts of the sebaceous glands of adult and adolescent humans. Some people may identify a vinegar-like smell with propionic acid, because it is similar to acetic acid, which gives vinegar its sour taste and pungent smell.
Isovaleric acid (3-methyl butanoic acid) is another source of body odor as a result of actions of the bacteria Staphylococcus epidermidis, which are also present in several strong cheese types.
What causes foot odor?
Most of us wear shoes and socks, making it much more difficult for the sweat to evaporate, giving the bacteria more sweat to break down into smelly substances. Moist feet also raise the risk of fungi developing, which can also give off unpleasant smells.
Diagnosing body odor
In the vast majority of cases of body odor it is not necessary to see your doctor. The individual himself/herself may be aware of it, or a good friend or a member of the household may tell them about their body odor. There are some self-care techniques that will usually successfully treat the problem.
When to see your doctor about body odor.
Some medical conditions may change how much a person sweats, while others can alter how we sweat, subsequently changing the way we smell. For example, hyperthyroidism (an over-active thyroid gland) or the menopause can make people sweat much more, while liver disease, kidney disease, or diabetes can change the consistency of sweat so that the person smells differently. You should see your doctor if:
You start sweating at night
You start sweating much more than you normally do, without any logical reason
You have cold sweats
Sweating disrupts your daily routine.
You should also see your doctor if your body smells differently. A fruity smell could indicate diabetes due to high levels of ketones in the bloodstream. Liver or kidney disease can often make the individual have a bleach-like smell due to a build-up of toxins in the body.
Can you change your natural body odor?
While you might mask your natural scent with deodorant, perfume, or scented lotion, your natural chemical odor can still be detected by those around you. Still, you can change this scent if you find that your natural aroma is not exactly pleasing. Here’s a look at some of the controllable factors that influence how you smell.
How you bathe – Hygiene plays an important role in body odor, because odors are produced by bacteria naturally present on the skin. Sweat itself is odorless, but when it evaporates on the skin, there may be unpleasant odors caused by bacteria. While you won’t want to eliminate bacteria completely with antibacterial soap, you might switch to a more gentle cleanser and use products like tea tree oil to shrink the pores and minimize sweat.
What you eat – Have you ever noticed that eating too much garlic can actually make you smell garlicky the next day? That’s because your diet has a strong effect on your body odor—particularly when you eat foods high in sulfurous compounds like broccoli, cabbage, and cauliflower. Foods that tend to make you sweat more, such as hot peppers or other spicy foods, might also contribute to body odor. Drinks with caffeine or alcohol may also cause you to sweat more.
How your body metabolizes food – Hard-to-digest foods like wheat, red meat, and dairy might also cause you to stink. If your body is unable to metabolize certain foods properly, toxins may build up in your digestive tract and seep through the skin.
Watch your stress levels – When you exercise or otherwise get overheated, your eccrine (sweat) glands produce a watery substance designed to regulate body temperature. But emotional stress triggers different glands—the apocrine glands, which are found mostly in the underarms and groin area—and they secrete a milky fluid. This fight-or-flight-related liquid is made up of water and lipids, so it’s a veritable feast for odor-causing bacteria, according to experts at the Mayo Clinic. Meditation, yoga, and other calming practices may help.
Wear breathable fabrics – Naturally derived fabrics like cotton, silks, and wools have more breathability than most man-made materials like rayon or spandex, according to research published in Applied and Environmental Microbiology and other journals. But when it comes to workout clothes, look for moisture-wicking synthetic materials.
Natural Treatments for Body Odor
Apply apple cider vinegar – Acid, like the kind found in apple cider vinegar or lemon juice, inhibits the growth of bacteria—including the kind that makes your sweat smell gross. Just be cautious, and use it sparingly: “While apple cider vinegar and lemon juice may help reduce levels of odor-causing bacteria on the skin, they may cause skin irritation,” says Zeichner. So if you decide to dab a few drops on your underarms with a cotton ball or add a splash to your bathwater, make sure you have no minor cuts or scrapes. Witch hazel and tea tree oil are also believed to be antimicrobial.
Go herbal – Sage is a delicious addition to both savory and sweet foods, and it turns out that it may also help blast BO (when an extract of it is applied topically). Rosemary oil may work similarly, as it’s been shown to be antimicrobial and “refreshing.” Incorporate a few sprigs to spritz up your daily water intake, or add it to your bath for some wonderful scents. Other herbs like parsley and mint have also been known to up the refreshing note because the strong oils they contain.
Essential Oils – Essential oils are natural oils found in fragrant plants, such as jasmine or orange blossoms. These oils can be used in place of chemical-heavy manufactured perfumes. Mix 6 to 12 drops of essential oil per ounce of carrier oil — such as grapeseed, sunflower or olive oil — and apply a small dab onto your wrists or behind your ears to leave you smelling heavenly throughout the day. As an added benefit, essential oils retain their scent for longer, because they’re more concentrated than perfumes, which are alcohol-based.
Perfumed Sachets – Perfumed sachets are small bags filled with fragrant herbs or blossoms. You can purchase them pre-made, or you can make your own, filling a small fabric or mesh bag with dried herbs or flowers. Common choices include lavender, rosemary and rose petals. For a more exotic combination, think of mixing together dried ginger and cinnamon. Keep the sachets in your closet, where they will gently perfume your clothes, helping you stay fresh smelling.
Baking Soda – Baking soda is a natural deodorizer. You can use it to absorb extra sweat and oils after a strenuous workout — it makes a natural underarm deodorant — or it can be used to deodorize clothes. A common use is to sprinkle some into shoes and let it sit overnight, as it will absorb foot odors, reducing your chances of having smelly feet. You can also sprinkle and rub some onto your hands to remove odors left from food preparation.
Drink More Water – While the standard guideline is to drink 8 glasses of water each day, people do differ from each other, be it in metabolism rates, and activities level. Instead, I would recommend drinking enough water means when your pee looks pale yellow, or clear. When we are dehydrated, our urine becomes acidic and makes us taste sour. Drinking enough water helps us to flush out toxins that makes us stink, and have the added benefits of making our complexions looking dewy. In addition, two published studies (1, 2) indicated that drinking 500 ml (17 oz) of water can temporarily boost metabolism by a 24-30%. It was estimated by the researchers that the sheer fact of drinking 2 liters (68 ounces) water in a day can actually increase your energy expenditure by 96 calories daily!
Chew On It – Indians have been known to chew on fennel seeds and cardamom seeds to get rid of bad breath post meals. The oils in the fennel and cardamom seeds have antibacterial properties, as well as help neutralize foul smelling odors and aid with digestions. Just pack a few seeds in a small ziplock bag in your purse for some immediate discreet deodorant action.
Probiotics – According to WebMD: “Probiotics are live bacteria and yeasts that are good for your health, especially your digestive system. We usually think of bacteria as something that causes diseases. But your body is full of bacteria, both good and bad. Probiotics are often called “good” or ‘helpful’ bacteria because they help keep your gut healthy.” Look for live probiotics in fermented goodies like yogurts, kombucha, kimchi and sauerkraut. Try your hand at fermenting them at home if you feel up to it, because you get to have more control over what goes into them, and helps to ensure that the probiotics are alive.
Eat Less Processed Foods – Almost all processed foods can be high in sugar, salts, fats and unpronounceable compounds (in any variation). Bacteria that lead to infections love sugar. Having a diet high in sugar and processed foods is almost like giving the green light to infections galore and reducing your body’s ability to regenerate itself. A diet high in sodium increases your risk of dehydration, which is a big no no when it comes to making you smell good. And if you find yourself being unable to pronounce whatever that is in the box, are you sure you really want to put in inside your body? When our bodies do not get a chance to repair itself due to the need to deal with processed foods, it gets laden with toxins and we age far more quickly than normal. We usually end up smelling a little worse for wear when that happens.
Establish Good Sleep Routine – Now what has sleeping well got to do with making our vagina smell good? Well, as it turns out, everything! When we get enough sleep and sleep quality is great, our body immunity improves and can fight infections better. According to TCM principles, the liver and gallbladder get cranking at repairing our bodies and detoxifying between 11pm to 3am. If we are not asleep by then, our liver and gallbladder cannot concentrate on detoxifying, and more toxins get retained in our bodies. Hence, it has been suggested that the best time to get ready for bed is to settle down by 10pm every night.
Essential Oils – all deodorize naturally because the all kill bacteria. Choose your favorites, dilute them in a carrier oil (3 drops per ounce), and use them as a perfume on your wrists and behind your ears. Mother Gaia’s hand blends anointing oils, body and bath oils, and truly natural aroma sprays for you to safely use. No chemicals needed!
Newspaper – Take the previous day’s newspaper and ball it up in the sleeves, underarms, or legs of your clothing and leave overnight (or at least four hours). The porous paper will eat up most, if not all, the odor. This trick also works for smelly shoes.
Kitty Litter – Keep an open bag of kitty litter in the closet to deodorize and remove the moisture from the space. Another tip is to put your clothing item directly inside of a clean container or Ziploc bag with kitty litter inside. Just shake out or brush off and wear.
Fresh air and sunlight – Nothing gets a foul odor out of clothing quite like fresh air. Even if you don’t have a backyard clothesline, you can hang your item in front of an open window for an hour or so.Sunlight can kill bacteria because of the ultraviolet rays. Hanging your clothes outside on a nice sunny day with a gentle breeze is the easiest way to remove the bacteria that’s making them smell.
Unused coffee grounds – Similar to the kitty litter method, coffee grounds will soak up environmental odors. Fill a bowl with fresh unused coffee grounds and fold your shirt or item on top and let it sit overnight. In the morning your item will be fresh. Just be careful not to get any of the grounds on your shirt, because they can stain.
Vodka – Nothing is better than straight, cheap vodka in a spray bottle to remove smells. When the alcohol in the vodka evaporates it takes the smells with it.
Baking soda – Just like it absorbs smells in your fridge or freezer, baking soda removes smells in clothing as well. Sprinkle the baking soda over the smelly areas, let it sit as long as you can and then shake off the powder.
Charcoal – A lot of odor removers use charcoal in their systems because odors actually bind with the charcoal and are removed from the air. Place some charcoal briquettes in the bottom of a paper bag and add the clothing on top, then close tightly and let it sit overnight. You can also place briquettes in shoes and boots to get rid of foot odors.
Distilled White Vinegar – Use distilled white vinegar in a spray bottle mixed with 10 drops of your favorite essential oil for a great spot fix. Shake the spray bottle to mix up the oils throughout the vinegar and spray on any spots that smell. The vinegar will work to kill 98 percent of the bacteria and the essential oil will work to cover up the vinegar smell. You can also spray the entire piece of clothing if needed.
As you can see you do not need to cover yourself or your home in chemicals to smell better. You can be less offensive naturally than with artificial fragrances and deodorants. Give your body what it actually needs and avoid chemicals as much as possible and you’ll be fresh every day.
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