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My eight-year-old daughter is suffering from severe body odour. Her diet includes a lot of sweets and some cooked vegetables, but she doesn’t like fruit much. Please advise.
NAME WITHHELD ON REQUEST Although perspiration is odourless, it can sometimes cause an unpleasant smell when it comes into contact with bacteria on the skin. Body odour is influenced by diet, gender, genetics, health and medications.
Apocrine sweat glands develop in areas abundant in hair follicles, such as on our scalp, armpits and groin. These glands secrete a fatty sweat; it’s the bacterial breakdown of apocrine sweat that causes an odour. Body odour can also be caused due to reasons such as eating garlic, fungal infections, gastrointestinal abnormalities, diabetes, poor hygiene, liver problems, vitamin deficiency, urinary infection, etc. Your doctor will be able to advise you about the possible causes. Some people can’t metabolise foods such as eggs, fish, liver and legumes. The result is a “fishy” smell. Try eliminating these from her diet for a week or two and see if it helps. You can do a number of things to reduce sweating and body odour: ● Regular bathing helps keep the number of bacteria on our skin in check. Your daughter can use *sidhardhaka choornam or *nimbadi choornam as a bath powder. Use a paste of *Thriphala choornam for scalp wash, twice weekly. ● Dry her feet thoroughly after a bath. ● Choose shoes and socks made of natural materials and change socks once or twice a day. ● Consider eliminating caffeinated drinks from her diet as well as foods with strong odours, such as garlic and onions. ● Eat less chocolate, peanuts, nuts, raisins, cereals, eggs, soya products, corn, wheatgerm. Greater emphasis should be on eating vegetables, rice and fruit. Drink plenty of water.
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