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My boyfriend struggles with “halitosis,” which is a nice way of saying bad breath.

Q. Dear Terry, “My boyfriend struggles with “halitosis,” which is a nice way of saying bad breath. He has a dentist appointment, but it’s not for several more months. What can he do in the meantime to help his breath?”– Nina D., Boston, MA

A. Dear Nina, When it comes to dental health, I highly recommend your boyfriend keep his dentist and/or healthcare practitioner in the loop with any supplementation he is considering. With that being said, I think I have some natural options that can help.

To help keep the gums and mouth healthy, I recommend concentrated plant oils of cinnamon, thyme, clove, and oregano. Cinnamon is a great antibacterial and antifungal, and was actually worth more than silver in ancient Rome. One of the most potent compounds in cinnamon, called cinnamaldehyde, has even been shown to inhibit Staphylococcus aureus. Thyme is one of the best concentrated plant oils to fight bacteria. However, this variety of thyme is a different species than you may use for cooking. The variety of thyme I recommend for oral health is Thymus satureioides. Clove has strong antibacterial properties for yeast and oral pathogens like Porphyromonas gingivalis and Prevotella intermedia, which are both linked to periodontal disease. Lastly, oregano is one of my favorite botanicals because it is such a potent antimicrobial for bacteria, fungi, parasites, and more. Oregano is also a great anti-inflammatory which makes it very useful for oral health.

Look for concentrated plant oils that are approved for internal use. Unlike essential oils used for massage and aromatherapy, these plant oils are tested and their identity verified based on specific molecular makeup, species, marker compounds, purity, and safety for internal medicinal use. The extraordinary potency of these tested plant oils allows for relatively low doses, but very powerful health benefits.

I would take 75 mg total of these four plant oils internally two times per day or after each meal.

He may also want to consider adding propolis because it is an excellent antifungal, antibacterial, antiviral, and more. Make sure you use propolis that is purified to remove inactive resins and beeswax. I would take 200 mg of propolis once or twice per day.

Andrographis has been used to safely and effectively fight bacterial infections. I believe that taking 400 mg of andrographis once or twice daily would be an excellent choice. Look for an andrographis standardized to andrographolide content.

Lastly, he could add CoQ10 as ubiquinol or ubiquinone. A chewable CoQ10 may be even more beneficial as the absorption will start in the mouth. I would take 100 mg of chewable CoQ10 per day.

Healthy Regards!

Terry . . . Naturally

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Terry is happy to provide his opinion on diet and nutrition, supplements and lifestyle choices. This information is for educational purposes only. It is not meant to replace the advice of your physician and is not to be considered medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. Should you have any concerns please contact your physician directly.
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