Bad breath is often a sign of systemic toxicity, either in the colon, intestine, or mouth. It can also be due to chronic indigestion or mal absorption. When digestion is weak or sluggish, the food you eat undergoes fermentation and putrefaction in the gastrointestinal tract, leading to the formation of ama [toxins], which has a foul smell. Stand in front of a mirror, and stick out your tongue. If the back portion of the tongue is coated, that is the sign of ama, which is responsible for the bad breath. Here are several effective remedies to prevent and treat bad breath.
The yoga posture known as Yoga Mudra, the Lion pose are good asanas for combating bad breath.
You can also do the pranayama known as shitali.
Simhasana (The Lion Pose)
Sit in Vajrasana with the knees apart, and if possible face the sun. Place the hands between the knees with the fingers pointing towards the body. Lean forward, resting the body on the straight arms. Tilt the head backward, open the mouth and extend the tongue as much as possible. Open the eyes wide and gaze at the eyebrow centre. Inhale through the nose. While slowly exhaling, produce a clear, steady ‘ah’ sound from the throat.
Yoga mudra (The psychic union pose)
Sit in padma asana and close the eyes. Relax the body for some time, breathing normally. Slowly bend the trunk forward until the forehead touches or nearly touches the ground. In the final position try to relax the whole body as much as possible. Slowly return to starting position.
Sheetali pranayama (The cooling breathe)
Sit in any meditative pose, palms on the knees. Extend the tongue and fold the sides to form a narrow tube. Inhale slowly and deeply through the tongue.
Dietary and herbal remedies
First monitor your diet. It’s important not to eat heavy meals, and to stay away from cold drinks, ice cream, cheese and yogurt, all of which reduce the gastric fire and slow down digestion, with a likely increase of ama. Then, after each meal (generally after lunch and dinner), chew about 1 teaspoon of roasted fennel and cumin seeds (mixed half and half). This will improve digestion, which indirectly helps to detoxify the colon.
The licorice-flavoured fennel seeds alone would be delicious and helpful, but this mixture will have a better effect. n Drink ½ cup of aloe vera juice twice a day until freshness is restored to the breath. n Slowly chewing one or two cardamom seeds also helps to minimise bad breath. Cardamom aids digestion and helps to reduce ama. n After each meal, drink a cup of cumin-coriander-fennel tea (equal proportions) as a digestive aid. Steep about ¼ to ½ teaspoon of each herb per cup of hot water.
Other remedies take care of your teeth and gums
Another, cause of bad breath is poor oral hygiene. It’s important to clean the teeth after each meal. Use an Ayurvedic tooth paste containing neem or an herbal formula. Also use dental floss every day. Applying some tea tree oil mixed half and half with neem oil to the gums and gently massaging will help prevent receding gums. Be sure to spit out the residue rather than swallowing.
If you follow these guidelines, you can say good-bye to bad breath.