For as much confidence as hair and makeup can give a girl, nothing tears that confidence down quicker than someone not being able to talk to you because of your breath. Considering the amount of coffee, sweets and topping-rich lunches we consume every day, it’s only natural that we wouldn’t have the freshest of breath all the time. Other times, it goes further than what you’re eating, and your bad breath is flagging a deeper issue with your health.
Luckily, you don’t need to resort to alcohol-ridden mouthwashes, constant brushing and systematic gum-popping to keep breath under control. While brushing twice a day, flossing every day and generally maintaining good dental hygiene is key for having fresh breath, there are a number of herbal remedies that can help you out, too. We chatted with DMD Dr. Jessica T. Emery to get her tips on natural, herbal remedies for fresh breath.
Basil: According to Dr. Jessica Emery, DMD, PC of Sugar Fix Dental Loft, this herb often used in Italian cooking is actually a natural antibiotic that reduces bacteria in the mouth. Chewing on a couple leaves can leave your breath surprisingly fresh.
Zinc: Some reports show that bad breath could be caused by a zinc deficiency (zinc is an antimicrobial). Try taking zinc tablets or eating zinc-rich foods like lamb, scallops, yogurt and sesame seeds to reap the benefits of this germ-busting mineral.
Ginger: Emery says that this spicy remedy is an anti-inflammatory and helps support mouth tissue. Eating raw ginger, or no-sugar-added chews work best, since sugar can help breed bacteria. Next time you order sushi, don’t skip on the side!
Stinging Nettle: Drinking this herb in tea form could help flush your system of toxins, including an overflow of yeast, which can cause halitosis. Plus, it’s a good hot beverage substitute for coffee, which doesn’t exactly help the issue of bad breath.
Cloves: In the Far East, chewing aromatic spice seeds, like those found in cloves, is commonplace after a meal, since these spices have antimicrobial properties. Use clove to spice up your dinner a few nights a week to reap the benefits.
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