Preventing Infection

Preventing Infection Naturally

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.

Advertisement

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.

Ineffective Sanitizers

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

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.

Advertisement

We have the tools for defense. Now how about a stronger healthier body capable of preventing infection all by itself.

Sleep

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.

Nutrition

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.

Alternative Therapies

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.

Advertisement

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.

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.

Advertisement

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.

Smell Better Naturally

What causes body odor?

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.

Advertisement

Find a great all natural deodorizing spray below.

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.

Advertisement

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.

Advertisement

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.

Advertisement

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.

Advertisement

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.

https://motherjai.com/shop/

Deodorizing Naturally

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.

References:

  1. https://www.memd.me/people-smell-better-others/
  2. http://chickrx.com/articles/12-tips-to-improve-your-body-s-natural-scent
  3. http://www.activebeat.co/your-health/women/7-odors-caused-by-health-problems
  4. https://www.webmd.com/skin-problems-and-treatments/reduce-body-odor
  5. https://www.prevention.com/health/7-effective-solutions-for-body-odor
  6. https://oureverydaylife.com/how-to-make-your-body-smell-good-naturally-12501185.html
  7. http://www.cosmopolitan.com/style-beauty/beauty/how-to/a4922/ways-to-smell-great-all-of-the-time/
  8. http://www.naturalhealthmag.com/expert-advice/how-can-i-get-rid-body-odor-naturally
  9. http://msue.anr.msu.edu/news/endless_uses_of_baking_soda
  10. http://www.mensfitness.com/styleandgrooming/grooming/pick-cotton-over-polyester-prevent-bo
  11. http://mountainroseblog.com/dilutions-conversions/
  12. http://curefeminineodor.com/make-your-vagina-smell-good/
  13. https://www.rd.com/home/cleaning-organizing/make-clothes-smell-better/

Healthy Hair

Healthy Hair Naturally

We know our lifestyles and environments have a huge impact on our physical health. Our hair and skin are the first to show chemical damage. Eating a healthy diet and exercising regularly help, of course, yet they aren’t enough when you’re using commercially produced, chemical laden products on your hair. So here are some natural options for strengthening and lengthening hair.

Proper Nutrition for Healthy Hair

A nutritious diet that contains healthful fats, protein, and a range of vitamins can help with thinning or thin hair. In fact, thin hair can be a sign that a person is not getting enough nutrients. To help remedy this, people with thin hair should include some of the following nutrient-rich foods in their diets:

Advertisement

  • salmon, which is high in protein and fatty acids
  • eggs, which contain protein, omega 3, and iron
  • walnuts, almonds, and other nuts, which are sources of fatty acids
  • greek yogurt, which is a source of protein
  • green, black, pinto, and other beans, which contain protein

A person should look to add 1 or 2 servings of any of the above foods to their daily diet. Even adding just 3 or 4 servings a week can contribute to improved hair health.

Regular Combing & Trimming

Comb your hair three times a day and trim it in every three months. Regular combing and trimming is extremely important for expediting the growth of new hair. Combing is essential as it provides good blood circulation, and stimulates hair follicles, helping them produce new hair naturally.

Proper Washing Technique

  1. Wash with warm water and rinse with cold.
  2. Use finger tips, not nails, to massage scalp and stimulate follicles.
  3. Always massage conditioners and oils into the scalp with circular motions.

Shampoo is Important

The type of shampoo you are using can have drastic effects on the health of your hair. It’s best to use a natural soap or a petroleum and sulfate free blend. These only remove dirt and do not strip the hair of its natural oils like commercial surfactants.

Coconut Oil Soap: easy to make or purchase (https://www.motherjai.com/shop) Full of fatty acids essential for nourishing the scalp and hair follicles and gently removes dirt and grease without over drying (stripping) the hair.

Advertisement

Natural Conditioning Can Help

Much like shampoo, conditioner contents can have drastic effects on the health of your hair. So instead of a petroleum wax and oil laden blend, try something that actually nourishes your hair. Here are some natural ways to moisturize and strengthen hair.

Apple Cider Vinegar: gently cleanses the scalp and maintains the PH balance of the hair accelerating hair growth. How To Use:

  • Wash your hair
  • Use apple cider vinegar as a final rinse after washing your hair to get healthy and shiny hair.
  • For 1 liter of solution – mix 75ml of apple cider vinegar to one liter of water
  • You may store this entirely or make it smaller batches.
  • For smaller quantities, take 15 ml of apple cider vinegar and add it to a cup of warm filtered water
  • After washing your hair, using this cup of water as the final rinse.

Aloe Gel: Applying aloe oil directly to the hair and scalp may help strengthen the hair and thicken it over time. For a homemade solution, a person can try rubbing some pure aloe gel into the scalp and letting it sit for 30 minutes before rinsing. This can be done once or twice a week.

Avocado: Avocado is rich in vitamin E, and many people believe it to be a good moisturizer. Make a simple avocado rub and apply it twice a week. Do remember it can be an ugly, squishy avocado, not a green healthy one. To make an avocado rub:

  • combine the fruit of 1 avocado with 1 tbsp olive/sunflower/coconut oil
  • apply the mixture to hair and scalp
  • let it sit for about 30 minutes
  • rinse thoroughly with natural shampoo

Cayenne Pepper: stimulates hair growth and prevents thinning of hair. It has a chemical in it known as Capsaicin. This ingredient when applied on the scalp causes the nerves to activate and increase the blood flow to the scalp. This results in increased absorption of nutrients and better hair growth. How To Use:

  • Mix 1 teaspoon of pepper powder with 2 teaspoons of olive oil
  • Apply it on the scalp where thinning is more prominent
  • Wash off with cool water

Coconut Milk: rich in iron, potassium and essential fats. It reduces hair fall and breakage. How To Use:

  • Extract the milk of a coconut
  • Apply it on the targeted areas
  • Keep it overnight
  • Rinse off with cool water the next day

Coconut Oil: Rich in potassium, coconut oil keeps your scalp healthy; promotes the growth of new hair and repairs damaged hair. It also reduces dandruff, hair breakage and hair loss. Coconut oil is also used as a pre-conditioning hair treatment for damaged hair. It acts as a moisturizer and strengthens the hair shaft from the root, thus preventing breakage. It keeps the scalp well-nourished and moisturized. Use coconut hot oil treatment for effective results.

Advertisement

Cumin Seeds: packed with 100′s of nutrients and vitamins that are great for replenishing your hair. How To Use:

  • Soak cumin seeds in olive oil or castor oil
  • Let it soak overnight
  • The next morning, apply it to the targeted areas
  • Wash after 15 minutes with a mild shampoo

Eggs: high in protein, which is essential for the body to build strong, thick hair. When used regularly, an egg treatment may help thicken and strengthen a person’s hair. To use an egg treatment:

  • beat 1 or 2 eggs together
  • apply the eggs to the scalp and damp hair
  • leave the eggs on the scalp for about 30 minutes
  • wash hair thoroughly with warm water and mild shampoo

Alternately, combine the eggs with oil and water. To use this method:

  • mix egg yolks, 1 tablespoon (tbsp) olive oil, and 2 tbsp of water
  • apply the mixture to the scalp and dry hair
  • leave for 15 minutes
  • rinse out with warm water and a mild shampoo

Fenugreek: accelerates hair growth and protects the natural color of your hair. How To Use:

  • Take 1 teaspoon of the fenugreek paste
  • Add 2 teaspoons of coconut milk to it
  • Apply it all over your hair and scalp
  • Leave it on for 30 minutes
  • Wash off with a mild shampoo

Flaxseed Oil: rich source of essential fatty acids which helps to transform dry, damaged and brittle hair to healthy and shiny hair. The omega 3 fatty acids in the oil promote healthy hair growth. How To Use:

Advertisement

  • Include flaxseed oil supplements in your daily diet
  • Use it with the combination of other essential oils.

Garlic: home remedy for reducing the shedding of hair. Why? It boosts the regeneration of new hair and promotes the scalp circulation. How To Use:

  • Boil a few cloves of crushed garlic in olive oil or coconut oil
  • Apply it to the roots of your hair follicles.
  • Wash off properly

Green Tea: antioxidants prevent hair loss and boost hair growth. How To Use:

  • Apply warm green tea all over your scalp
  • Leave it for an hour
  • Rinse off with cool water

Henna Pack: very well known as a natural conditioner. It is also good for hair growth. Why? It transforms dull and dry hair to smooth and shiny hair and adds colour too. It promotes hair growth by strengthening the roots of your hair. How To Use:

  • Make a pack by mixing 1 cup of dry henna powder with ½ cup of yoghurt
  • Apply it all over your hair from root to tip.
  • Leave the pack until it dries off completely
  • Wash off with a mild shampoo

Hibiscus Flower: the “flower of hair care.” This flower is used for curing dandruff and enhancing hair growth. It also thickens the hair and prevents pre-mature ageing. How To Use:

  • Make a paste of the hibiscus flower with coconut oil or sesame oil
  • Apply it on your hair evenly.
  • Rinse with a mild shampoo.

Indian Gooseberry (Amla):  powerhouse of antioxidants and vitamin C. Amla promotes healthy hair growth and also improves the pigmentation of the hair. How To Use:

  • Mix 2 teaspoons of amla powder or juice with 2 teaspoons of lime juice
  • Apply this on your scalp properly and let it dry
  • Now rinse it well with warm water

Olive Oil: rich in omega 3 acids and other nutrients that are essential for overall health, including hair health. When applied directly to the scalp and hair, olive oil helps promote thicker hair. Olive oil also has the added benefit of softening the hair and relieving dry scalp. Some people add honey to the olive oil and others suggest leaving the olive oil on overnight using a shower cap to cover the hair. To use olive oil:

Advertisement

  • heat the oil to body temperature
  • massage the warm oil into the scalp and hair
  • leave in hair for about 30 to 45 minutes
  • rinse out the olive oil with mild shampoo

Onion Juice: rich in sulphur that boosts collagen production in the tissues and helps in re-growth of hair. How To Use:

  • Use red onions or shallots
  • Chop it into small pieces
  • Squeeze out its juice.
  • Now apply it on your scalp carefully and keep for 15 minutes.
  • Finally rinse off with a mild shampoo.

Orange Puree: The vitamin C, pectin, and acid in oranges can help a person’s hair in a few different ways. The vitamins and nutrients may improve hair’s natural luster, which makes the hair appear thicker. The acid in oranges helps break apart residue left from hair products. These residues may interfere with hair growth. Unlike some of the other treatments, orange puree has a pleasant scent that makes the treatment more enjoyable. A person can use orange puree as a hair treatment by blending fresh oranges then massaging the puree into the hair and scalp. Leave the puree on the hair for about 1 hour before rinsing it out. Some people like to use a light conditioner to rehydrate their hair following an orange puree treatment.

Peppercorns: The use of black peppercorns is prevalent in the ayurvedic medicine. It leaves your hair soft and lustrous while improving the texture. Why? Black peppercorns have essential oils which keep your scalp well-hydrated. How To Use:

  • Blend 2 teaspoons of peppercorns with half a cup of lime juice
  • Form a smooth paste
  • Apply this paste on the roots
  • Cover your head with a warm towel for deep penetration.
  • Rinse off after half an hour.

Potato Juice: rich in Vitamin A, B and C. These are essential for healthy hair. This can be used even if you are suffering from alopecia i.e. thinning of hair. How To Use:

  • Place potato in an extractor for juicing
  • Apply the potato juice on the scalp
  • Leave it on for 15 minutes
  • Wash off using mild shampoo
  • Potato is good for use as face packs too.

Essential Oils to Improve Hair Health

Cedarwood: Cedarwood is used to help stimulate the hair follicles by increasing circulation to the scalp. It can promote hair growth and slow hair loss; it can also treat thinning hair and various types of alopecia. Cedarwood can be applied topically to the scalp and hair. It mixes well with gentle oils like lavender and carrier oils like coconut oil. You can also add 2–3 drops of cedarwood oil to your homemade conditioner.

Chamomile: it adds shine and softness to your hair while soothing your scalp.

Did you know that chamomile essential oil can be used to lighten your hair naturally? Combine 5 drops of chamomile essential oil with a tablespoon of sea salt and one-third cup of baking soda. Use warm water to create a paste and apply the mixture to your hair. Massage it into your scalp and at the base of your hair, then allow it to sit for about half an hour before rinsing it out. If you want a bolder affect, keep the paste on as you sit in the sun.

Clary Sage: works as a natural remedy for rashes, and it works as an antibacterial agent. But maybe most importantly, clary sage can be used to help you relieve stress and balance hormones. Three types of hair loss can be associated with high stress levels: telogen effluvium, trichotillomania (hair pulling) and alopecia areata. Because clary sage can be used to help relieve stress and reduce cortisol levels in the body, it works as a natural remedy for stress-induced hair loss.

Clary sage works well with jojoba oil; the two can help to regulate oil production on the skin, helping you to avoid scaly or flaky patches that lead to dandruff. To ease stress, which is associated with hair loss, you can diffuse clary sage oil at home or apply a few drops to your wrists, temples and bottoms of your feet.

Lavender: has antimicrobial properties, and it can be used to combat bacterial and fungal disorders. Some other lavender oil benefits are its ability to soothe the scalp and heal dry skin and hair. Plus, because emotional stress is a factor that can contribute to thinning hair, lavender oil can be used to create a tranquil and stress-free environment.

Lemongrass: has healing properties, and it works as an effective cleanser and deodorizer. It can strengthen your hair follicles and soothe an itchy and irritated scalp. Some bonus benefits of lemongrass oil include its ability to work as a natural bug repellant, relieve stress (which is associated with hair loss) and treat headaches.

You can add 10 drops of lemongrass oil to your bottle of shampoo or conditioner, or you can massage 2–3 drops into your scalp along with your conditioner daily. Lemongrass oil can also be diffused at home to reduce stress and detoxify the space.

Peppermint: helps to stimulate the scalp, and it can treat dandruff and even lice due to its powerful antiseptic properties. Research shows that peppermint oil promotes hair growth, too. In a 2014 animal study, topical application of peppermint oil for four weeks showed prominent hair growth effects, increasing dermal thickness, follicle number and follicle depth. Add 2–3 drops of peppermint to your shampoo or conditioner for a quick wake-me-up during your morning shower.

Rosemary: used to increase cellular metabolism, which stimulates hair growth and promotes healing. Research even shows that rosemary oil appears to work as well as minoxidil, a conventional topical hair loss treatment. When it comes to boosting your hair health, the benefits of rosemary oil also include preventing baldness, slowing the graying process and treating dandruff and dry scalp.

To use rosemary oil for your hair, take 3–5 drops and mix it with equal parts olive oil, and then massage the mixture into your scalp for about two minutes. Leave it in your hair for 3 to 4 hours, and then wash your hair as usual.

Tea Tree: has powerful cleansing, antibacterial, and antimicrobial properties. When used topically, it can help unplug hair follicles and increase hair growth. You can mix 10 drops of tea tree oil into your shampoo or conditioner and use it daily, or mix 3 drops with 2 tablespoons of a carrier oil and leave it on for 15 minutes before rinsing it out.

Thyme: help promote hair growth by both stimulating the scalp and actively preventing hair loss. Like cedarwood oil, thyme oil was also found to be helpful in treating alopecia areata. Thyme is particularly strong, even among essential oils. Put only 2 small drops in 2 tablespoons of a carrier oil before applying it to your scalp. Leave it on for about 10 minutes and wash it out.

Ylang Ylang: While those with oily hair and skin would want to skip this one, ylang-ylang oil is ideal for those with dry scalps, as it can stimulate sebum production. As lack of enough oil and sebum causes hair to become dry and brittle, ylang-ylang can improve hair texture and reduce hair breakage. Mix 5 drops of ylang-ylang oil with 2 tablespoons of warm oil. Massage it into your scalp and wrap your head with a warm towel. Leave it in for 30 minutes before washing it out.

DIY recipes that will also help to boost the health of your hair:

Thicken your hair: To help thicken your hair naturally, use this natural hair thickener that’s made with a combination of rosemary, cedarwood and sage essential oils. These oils will stimulate your hair follicles by increasing circulation to the scalp and helping to balance your hormones.

Style your hair: You want to avoid using conventional hair sprays because many conventional products on the market today include toxins that you don’t want anywhere near your head and face. To help set your hair and prevent fly aways, use this homemade hair spray that’s made with lavender and rosemary, plus vodka and cane sugar, which will give you the hold you’re looking for.

Prevent oily/greasy hair: Add 2–3 drops of peppermint oil to your conditioner to get rid of greasy hair.

Add shine: Giving your hair and scalp a good hair mask treatment on a weekly basis can help take care of unruly strands, moisturize your hair and add shine.

Lighten your hair: Add 2–3 drops of chamomile oil to your hair before going out in the sun.

References:

  1. https://ecolifemaster.com/onion-juice-for-hair-regrowth-male-pattern-baldness/
  2. https://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/319862.php
  3. https://www.healthline.com/health/beauty-skin-care/how-to-get-thicker-hair
  4. https://www.rd.com/health/beauty/home-remedies-for-dry-damaged-hair/
  5. https://www.rd.com/health/beauty/healthy-hair-tips/
  6. https://www.naturalgirlsrock.com/blogs/rockin-guest-bloggers-speak/28748737-31-natural-hair-growth-remedies
  7. https://www.healthline.com/health/essential-oils-for-hair-growth#essential-oils
  8. https://draxe.com/essential-oils-for-hair/