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Bad smelling breath or foul-smelling mouth or nose (halitosis) is a common problem worldwide. It increases with age and can be extremely stressful for those affected. Halitosis is usually caused by problems in the oral cavity and throat. If, however, good dental hygiene can rule them out, then bad breath can be the first sign of an undetected inflammation of the stomach lining, a gastritis. On top of that, we live in a stressful time and the demands of people can be very challenging most of the time. As is well known, stress hits the stomach, which leads to diseases, and as a consequence halitosis can develop from within.
Chinese medicine believes that the physiological function of the Stomach is to receive and transform the food. Excessive consumption of hot-natured foods such as spicy food, red meat, wine, coffee may disturb the normal functions of the Spleen and Stomach. Stomach Qi will retrograde and cause bad breath. This is called the Stomach Heat Syndrome; also overeating can damage the digestive function of the Spleen and Stomach, the over-eaten food will stagnate in the Stomach, spoil and ferment, Stomach Qi will retrograde, produce Heat and then cause bad breath, which is then called Food Stagnation. Stomach Heat or Food Stagnation may also be accompanied by some symptoms such as bloating, hiccups, stomach acid, like drinking cold, dry stools, yellow urine, yellow tongue coating.