Fertility Preservation

by Tiffani on April 22, 2014

We can stop time now – I mean literally! In recent years, the option of freezing eggs has become reality for women. This has been a breakthrough for women in a sense that we can control our time when we want to be mothers, and that we do not have to be dependent on our natural ‘biological clock’ that never stops ticking. We can freeze our eggs at 30, and still choose to become mothers at 40s.

One of our acupuncturists, Caroline Jung, L.Ac., at our institute recently underwent the egg freezing process, and I thought it would be nice to share her own personal experience:

“I feel it is important for me to share this with my fellow women so that this conversation can become more commonly expressed. I feel that the option to go through an egg freezing cycle is not talked about by many OBGYNs to their patients unless there is already an issue at hand. I feel that we have to be proactive with our health and think about going through with an opportunity like this far in advance. I also hope that this process becomes more commonplace and does not seem out of reach or unusual; this option should be available for all women and presented to us before our childbearing years.

In August 2013, at age 39, I had my eggs frozen. I am so grateful to have had this opportunity. This is something I thought about for many months and contemplated all of the pros and cons before beginning the journey. I grew through this experience in so many ways – on a personal level, this experience helped me to realize what is most important to me and what I truly want in my future. Of course the goal of my egg freezing cycle was to have as many healthy eggs retrieved as possible in order to become pregnant in the future, but I discovered so many other things about myself and my relationships. These revelations came to me during the months of thinking about this decision and then actually going through the process.

One of the most challenging pieces of my egg-freezing cycle was moving through each day and treating my body as if it were already pregnant. For several months before I began the stimulation cycle, I stopped vigorous exercise, I gave up refined sugars, alcohol and coffee – all of these sacrifices were tough but so well worth it! I kept in mind that everything I did, any food I consumed, every thought I had, every mile I would run, every emotion I felt. All of this was also felt by my eggs which will eventually become embryos that will hopefully become my child.

This process has so many layers to it that it began a long time before going in for monitoring, blood work, et cetera. One of the most exciting parts of my journey was beginning the medications. Even though the thought of injecting meds into my stomach was a bit scary, it actually did not really hurt and was fairly easy. When it came to the first day of doing it, I was really excited. This part was fascinating to me…that I was given all of the medications to help my follicles grow to nourish the growth of my eggs. To this day it is still amazing to me that for a large part of my egg freezing cycle, I was doing the majority of the work. Yes, I went in for ultrasounds, blood work, and of course the retrieval, but everything leading up to that was my sole responsibility to make sure that it was taken care of every day.

Through all of this, I felt I became close to the spirits housed in my eggs, as they were a part of me, and completely understood what this process was all about. The day came for my retrieval, and I told my mom that I was not ready to give them up, as I had felt so connected to them already through the days leading up to that point. The retrieval itself was a very quick process that I remember clearly, going into the surgery room and immediately afterward. I was very happy with my outcome: five healthy frozen eggs.

Now, I feel like I have gone through the tough part of my egg-freezing cycle and I look forward to the second half involving the transfer.

There are many options/programs available from many qualified and wonderful doctors, so take the time to research, do interviews with the docs and their staff, and take inventory of your own life and wishes. This is truly an amazing chapter you can add to your life!”

This opportunity was not available when I was going through my fertility journey and wished that it did.  TCW did a wonderful piece on this topic in the April 2013 issue  if anyone’s interested in more information about egg freezing.  Also, for more information about ‘to dos’ before egg freezing, visit our TKI health blog.

With this in mind, TKI is offering a special topics workshop on “Fertility Preservation” on Tuesday, May 20, at 6pm with Dr. Eve Feinberg from Fertility Centers of Illinois.  I hope some of you can join us! For more information, call 312.260.9000.

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Boost Your Cold-Season Energy

by Tiffani on February 25, 2014

With our long winter days and less time outside for exercise and activities, it can be easy for our energy levels to dip. This is usual at this time of year for most of us. Yet, we should pay attention if our energy level seems lower than usual for our daily routine and lifestyle. It is typical to experience the ‘winter blues’ and also ‘SAD’ (Seasonal Affective Disorder). With less sunshine for us to experience right now, this may contribute to emotional ups and downs along with other factors as well.

One easy to make sure we stay alert and active is to keep a healthy level of vitamin B-12 in our nutritional intake. Research shows that all of the B vitamins help with our overall mood and emotions. Out of the eight B vitamins, B-12 can especially help with feelings of anxiety and depression. It is typical that at only slightly lower than normal levels of vitamin B-12 we may experience symptoms of fatigue and poor memory. Other symptoms we may experience with a deficiency are weakness, constipation, loss of appetite and numbness in the hands and feet. All of these physical symptoms can also increase any emotional changes we may experience from a B-12 deficiency.

Along with being well-known for its benefits for mood, vitamin B-12 plays a key role in the normal functioning of the brain and nervous system. It is needed to make red blood cells and nerves, as we see vitamin b-12 is commonly recommended for anemia. Another important role of B-12 is that it may help to protect against symptoms associated with Alzheimer’s Disease by protecting against brain atrophy and shrinking. Some studies claim that vitamin B-12 can help improve memory for Alzheimer’s patients.

Natural sources of vitamin B-12 are only found in animal products such as meat, poultry, eggs, fish and dairy. Some cereals, energy bars and milk substitutes are fortified with B-12 as well. So for vegetarians and vegans, you must use supplements to get your daily requirements of vitamin B-12. This is very easy as there are many high-quality supplements on the market. It can also be found in a ‘B-complex’ supplement which is great to make sure we cover all eight of our Bs. Also, some doctors and practitioners recommend vitamin b-12 shots which can greatly boost the immune system and overall health and well-being.

It is important for us to remember that vitamin B-12 can interact with certain medications such as some antibiotics and also specific diabetes medications. Please be certain and consult with your doctor before adding in additional nutritional supplements.

So, be sure to have your blood levels checked each year with your general practitioner to make sure your levels are up to par. Take your daily supplements as a preventative measure for your health and well-being!

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Remembering My Father, My Hero

by Tiffani on December 21, 2013

Holidays are a time for celebration.  For some of us, it’s also a time to miss and remember our loved ones who may have passed on.  This Christmas, for the first time in my life, my father will not be with us for this holiday season.  My father recently passed away and this is my memory of my beloved ‘Daddy.’

Many would say that their father is the best there is/was.  I can truly say that my Dad was the BEST that I could have ever asked for! He was a 100% devoted father to his children and a loyal husband to our mom.  My Dad gave us unconditional love, 24/7, and always gave us more than 100%.  I say 100% because that’s how my dad was.  That was his standard –anything less than 100% was not my Dad.

When I was 10 years old, I took a pair of scissors to my mom’s favorite dress to make doll cloths claiming that I wanted to be a fashion designer.  Instead of getting mad about the situation, my Dad encouraged me and complimented on what a beautiful dress I had made for the doll.

When I was 12, my Dad took me to the Children’s Art contest at the Seoul National Park which has many exhibits of historical monuments and statues. Most of the children who were there spent their time in front of monuments or statues and they would draw sketches of them. My Dad took my hand and guided me to the different areas of the park and told me that ‘beauty’ is present in everything and everywhere so I should look deeper and wider and not just focus on what I see on the surface.   He told me that it is important to see and think outside of the box if I wanted to be an artist.  I ended up winning the national contest with his wise advice.  This was the defining moment in my life that set the tone for everything I do.

Things changed for my Dad when our family moved to the United States. He never really showed great emotion, but we all knew that inside he had a heart of gold.  I never knew how loving and compassionate my Dad was until I was living out of the country during my college years.  He would write me the most loving letters; I couldn’t believe those words were coming from my Dad.

My Dad was not the easiest person to live with.  He had very high standards – his 100% was also what he expected of us.  He taught me the most important thing in a person was to be a person of decency, before being the best designer, before being a good businesswoman or any other person for that matter.  He never tolerated us being late, so we are never late!  He never tolerated us not being responsible for our actions or possessions.  He would never break a promise.  And he never tolerated one’s unkindness to another person.

These things were embedded within us when we were growing up.  Every dinner my Dad would tell us some inspiring stories about people of distant past and present, famous or not.  Again, stressing the importance of simple acts of kindness to ensure that we understood the virtue of being righteous and descent human beings.  He also never forgot to tell us, always, how proud he was of us.

My Dad was born what is now North Korea, the last country to stand divided on Earth.  He was born during a time of turmoil, during the Japanese occupation of Korea, in the midst of Confucius ideology transitioning to modern times.  With help of his parents risking their lives, he was able to escape the area of the country where it was becoming saturated with Communism.  He was only 12 years old.  My Dad never spoke of how he missed his family in North Korea, but I know that he had lived with the guilt of being the only survivor.  All his life that I know of, he longed to see his mother, father and the home he left behind over 70 years ago.  I now experience the pain of losing my Dad in my 50s.  I can only imagine what it would have been for my Dad to leave his beloved parents at 12 with no promise to ever see them again. Now I am sure he is with them reunited, catching up on lost times.

Perhaps, the greatest tribute I can give will be when I come to the end of my days and people say to me, simply, ” she was just like her father.” Daddy, I miss you more than words can express.  I know I will see you again — I am sure.  Hope you will be proud of what we all become when that time comes.  I love you Daddy, I miss you every day until I leave this earth, I promise I will never let you down and I thank you so much for the extraordinary, unconditional love you have given me all my life.   You will always be my “Hero”!

Love, forever!

Your daughter, Tiffani

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Natural Ways to Boost Immunity

by Tiffani on October 23, 2013

Cold and flu season definitely has arrived. I’m starting to see coughs and sniffles here and there. I think this is a good time to emphasize how you can stay healthy this flu season. Here are some simple things you can do to prevent and protect!

  1. Wash hands. This most common-sense practice is one of the most effective ways to minimize exposure to germs. Make it your routine to wash your hands frequently and thoroughly.
  2. Drink plenty of fluids and use humidifier. With dry heat blasting to keep us warm, it’s crucial to stay hydrated. Studies show that our cells do not properly function without water (which makes sense when our body is made up of more than 60 percent water).
  3. Sleep. We all know how we feel when we do not get adequate amounts of quality sleep. Our energy levels decrease and performance becomes sluggish. A recent study showed that lack of sleep is disruptive to our immune system.
  4. Moderate stress. Numerous studies show that stress decreases immune system functions and can make you prone to infection. Give yourself a little downtime to listen to your favorite music, make your favorite meal or simply go for a short walk.
  5. Exercise regularly. Getting your blood flow going will help to boost the immune system. Daily walks, jogs or maybe trying out the newest, hippest workout class would be great.
  6. Eat well. Warm, nourishing foods are good in the cold weather. A good soup or stew or foods high in zinc, such as oysters, can help you to fend off cold and flu. Garlic is a great herb to add in ample amounts to many of your dishes: The allicin in garlic helps to boost the immune system.
  7. Try acupuncture. I highly recommend this as it is shown to boost your immune system and have your Qi-energy in check, free of ‘stagnation.’ This is definitely my go-to strategy for staying healthy!
  8. Have sex. Study shows having sex one to two times a week can boost your immune system…now there’s a thought for tonight!

With a few known remedies and routine add-ins, we can certainly beat this cold and flu season. Stay healthy and be well! At the Tiffani Kim Institute, we offer flu shots and Vitamin B shots every day. It’s best to be proactive and prevent so you can enjoy the winter season. Call 312-260-9088 and make an appointment.

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Boost Your Sex Life – The Natural Way!

by Tiffani on September 10, 2013

Are you too tired to have sex? What happened to your desire? You don’t feel the excitement? Well, you are not alone!

I think most of us go through some issue like this in our busy/stressful lifestyle. I know that such problems can be corrected with simple hormone treatments like what we offer at the Tiffani Kim Institute, but I’m always curious how to fix things naturally as well. So, I asked one of our acupuncturists, the very talented Caroline Jung, Dipl. Ac., MSOM. Caroline specializes in women’s health, and she’s very passionate about natural remedies and treatments. Here’s what Caroline has to say about how to boost libido the natural way…

Is it natural for women and men to have a lower libido as we age? The answer is yes for both! As we become older, our physiology gradually changes. Along with age comes a change in our hormone levels, which can play a dominant role in the level of our sex drive. This varies from person to person and can depend on a range of circumstances. Sometimes a low sex drive can be a result of underlying physical conditions, while at other times it may be linked to psychological issues or a combination of the two. Luckily, we have natural, comfortable ways to nourish our libido.

For women, decreased sexual desires can begin during perimenopause, which is the time right before menopause, which can occur in a woman’s late 30s or 40s. Menopause is also a starting point for some women to notice a decrease in their sex drive. This is due to a shift in hormones, particularly estrogen. A few other causes may be post-partum depression, hypothyroidism, prescription drugs, body image issues, stress, and anxiety.

For men, a decrease in libido can be a result of low testosterone levels that may be due to hypogonadism. Other causes may include digestive issues, heart disease, prescription drugs, alcohol use, depression, stress, and anxiety.

For both women and men, any of the symptoms listed above can lead to another – any physical symptom causing a decrease in the lust for love can cause an emotional disruption which can lead to a decreased sexual desire. This is the same as an emotional issue affecting a physical symptom, resulting in a lowered sex drive.

So what natural ways we can maintain a healthy sex life? One of the most well-known treatments is herbal therapy. There are a number of herbs and herbal formulas that are recommended, depending on the individual. Here are a few to consider:
  • St. John’s Wort: an herb commonly used to treat depression, anxiety and menopausal symptoms, which can affect libido.
  • Passion Flower: an herb native to North America, it is well known for its aphrodisiac effects and for reducing anxiety.
  • Ginkgo: an herb native to China that is known for its benefits for concentration/focus; it may also help improve blood circulation, therefore increasing sex drive.
  • Sarsaparilla: an herb that can have a positive effect on testosterone and progesterone production, which play roles in reproduction; this herb is beneficial for general sexual energy and vitality.
  • Yin Yang Huo: a traditional Chinese herb that is used for nourishing the ‘kidney energy’ and treating erectile dysfunction.
As with all medications, herbs and supplements, consult with your doctor before incorporating a new treatment as to be aware of possible side effects and/or interactions with other medications, herbs, and supplements. Along with herbal treatment, here are a few key recommendations to keep in mind for both women and men to sustain a happy and healthy sex drive:
  • Adequate, restorative sleep
  • Regular exercise to build energy and stamina
  • Fresh and organic healthy diet
  • Limit alcohol intake
  • Daily multivitamins
  • Acupuncture
  • Engage in activities that increase self-esteem
  • Meditation
  • Spending quality time with your partner not only for your physical connection but also spiritual and emotional
Our natural sexual desire depends on not only our physical well-being but also our emotional health and spirit. By keeping in mind that both nourish and develop each other, we can continually enjoy the full expression of our love lives!
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September: PCOS Awareness Month

by Tiffani on August 15, 2013

September is PCOS (Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome) Awareness Month. To help us all become more aware of this disorder, Caroline Jung, Dipl. Ac., MSOM, one of our acupuncturists and a women’s health specialist at Tiffani Kim Institute, has this message about what PCOS is and how Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) can effectively treat PCOS.

To begin, I’m going to explain PCOS, which can be a mysterious disorder to us because it doesn’t have a definitive cause. PCOS is polycystic ovarian syndrome, which is a hormonal disorder that can cause a variety of symptoms for women. The symptoms include hirsutism (excessive hair growth on the face, chest, abdomen), hair loss (male pattern baldness), acne, polycystic ovaries, obesity and infertility. Most often, symptoms first appear during adolescence, around the start of menstruation. However, some women do not develop symptoms until they are into their 20s. PCOS is the most common hormonal problem for women of childbearing age, affecting 5-10 percent of women during this time in life. Although PCOS presents early in life, it persists through and beyond a woman’s reproductive years.

Along with the symptoms mentioned above, PCOS can lead to other health issues later in life such as insulin resistance, diabetes, sleep apnea, heart disease and endometrial cancer. A PCOS presentation can vary from woman to woman so it can be difficult to universally define it – however, it’s clear that all women affected with PCOS do have irregular and unpredictable ovulation patterns. It’s also clear they produce excess amounts of androgens (testosterone).

The hormone imbalance seen with PCOS includes several hormones, FSH (Follicle-stimulating hormone), LH (Luteinizing hormone), thyroid, and androgens (testosterone). It’s not yet completely understood why or how the changes in the hormone levels occur. PCOS develops when the ovaries overproduce the androgens. An overproduction of androgens can result from an overproduction of LH, which is produced by the pituitary gland.

Although it’s not completely understood what exactly causes PCOS, there are a few key factors that can play a role:

  • Excess insulin
  • Low-grade inflammation
  • Heredity
  • Abnormal fetal development

Testing used to determine PCOS includes a physical exam, pelvic ultrasound, and bloodwork. Treatment for PCOS includes medications to help regulate the menstrual cycle and ovulation and the reduction of excessive hair growth, and surgery, which is sometimes an option.

When we look at PCOS from a Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) perspective, we look at where the energetic ‘qi’ imbalance is stemming from. This is how we form a diagnosis and treatment plan. In TCM, disorder arises from excess and deficiency of the qi in our bodies. Our qi runs through the energy channels along our bodies. PCOS can result from imbalances in various channels:

  • Our kidney channel, which can have a ‘yang’ deficiency.
  • Our spleen channel, which will have more of a excess of damp pathogen.
  • Our liver channel, which can have a blood stasis pattern.

These energy imbalances can be seen as cystic ovaries, irregular menses, infertility, hirsutism and abdominal discomfort.

Once we have determined where the imbalances of qi are, we can create a treatment plan. PCOS is effectively treated by using a variety of therapies. These include:

  • Acupuncture
  • Chinese herbs
  • Supplements
  • Regular exercise
  • Specific food plans
  • Adequate quality rest
  • Meditation

Acupuncture and Chinese herbs work in similar fashion to treat PCOS and all of its symptoms. By using acupuncture and herbs to balance the qi that is affected by PCOS, these treatments will help to regulate the hormones that are out of balance with a PCOS presentation.

study published in 2008 demonstrates the effectiveness of electro-acupuncture and exercise on PCOS. The study results showed a difference in adipose levels and insulin resistance after using electro-acupuncture and exercise together.

A typical TCM treatment plan for PCOS may include weekly acupuncture treatments for several months or even longer. It depends on each individual patient, her specific symptoms, how long she has been affected by PCOS, and other factors as well. We have seen wonderful results with using acupuncture and herbs to treat PCOS by helping to regulate the hormones—a healthy and happy mind, body and spirit!

A note from Tiffani Kim: In honor of PCOS Awareness month, we’re offering a special PCOS workshop with Dr. Eve Feinberg, a reproductive endocrinologist at Fertility Centers of Illinois on Monday, September 9, from 6-7:30PM. Seats are limited and RSVP is required. Please visit tiffanikiminstitute.com for more information.

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I love my dog, Monster (#3)! He is my third Akita, my third Monster.

People always ask me why I would give my dog the same name as my past dogs. Well, it’s because I never want to feel like my dog has left me. He’s been here with me all along. He was never gone; he will always be here. I also know the difference in each Monster’s personalities. Yes, they are different but my dog, Monster, never left me.

Pets can help their owners overcome depression, sadness and loneliness through their companionship and unconditional love. They seem to possess the natural ability to help you relax and enjoy life more.

Sharing your life with a cat or dog seems to definitely help your mental health. A study conducted at Australia’s University of New England found that people who own feline friends may experience fewer psychiatric disturbances than those without cats. I’m sure the same could be proven about dogs. I also found that 95 percent of the people who love cats or dogs are kinder and nicer people. Therefore, I feel closer to them quicker and my guard is lowered sooner.

According to a Chinese proverb, dogs have so many friends because they wag their tails, not their tongues. Unconditional love is what we seek as human beings. Our pets give us that, and nearly always it comes right from the start. Unless an animal is in recovery, in a rescued situation or have been caught in the wild, they stand ready and waiting with open hearts to love us.

Through the unconditional love of our pets, we learn what true loyalty is, what true acceptance is and what true companionship is. This unconditional love is a true gift: one we may not always deserve but one that is always there.

Sadly, many people have never known what it feels like to share true unconditional love between other human beings. Many have become disillusioned at what they thought was unconditional love, only to find in the end that there were indeed conditions in place that were not met. In fact, except in the case of a parent’s instant and lasting unconditional love for their child, nearly all human relationships begin with conditions in place before we trust other human beings with our hearts. The unconditional love of adults for other adults generally is a gift of the heart that is opened and offered over time as trust, respect and character are observed and friendship develops.

What I realize in unconditional love is that if you never had it you won’t understand it and be able to give it. If you don’t know how it feels and what it is, how are you supposed to give? So many people go out there looking for the unconditional love but have no idea what it is.  It is sad, but it is a good start to have a pet around to understand what the unconditional love feels like.

Unconditional love from our pets comes directly through the grace of love. When they pass away, we sometimes miss them more than we miss our human loved ones, and we often grieve more deeply for their loss. Why? Because they loved us unconditionally, and there is perhaps no one on Earth who imparted to us that highest form of love, that most spiritual form of love, or perhaps called it up from within our own hearts, than our beloved pet. They call us to love another in that amazing, unconditional way.

Every day I am so grateful and happy that Monster is in my life, loving me unconditionally without wanting anything in return. How lucky I am to have his love!!!

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A Fresh Start: Cleansing Toxins From Our Bodies

by Tiffani on January 2, 2013

We made it through another year! 2012 has passed, and yippee…we all survived the Mayan Apocalypse (although my diet was completely destroyed).

For the last month-and-a-half I’ve not made the healthy choices that I know I should have when deciding what to eat. I instead ate numerous cookies, pies, delicious turkey and so on…my diet was out the window, which gave me momentary food bliss. I am now reaping the unfortunate result of weight gain and fatigue with the build-up of unwanted toxins in my system.

Thank goodness I work alongside two of the finest acupuncturists at the Tiffani Kim Institute. I’ve learned the importance of keeping a healthy, well-balanced lifestyle. Knowing what you put into your body is extremely helpful when you are trying to stay on a healthy path. The benefits are high and can really improve ones live physically and mentally!

This program is a great way to start the New Year ladies and gentlemen! Start the year off right by taking control of your body and focusing on a healthier, better you!

Are you experiencing any of the following symptoms:

  • • Poor memory or brain fog?
  • • Frequent headaches?
  • • Weight gain?
  • • Multiple allergies to drugs or chemicals?
  • • Muscle pain or painful joints?

Do you:

  • • Take prescription drugs regularly?
  • • Take Tylenol or any OTC drugs regularly?
  • • Have a poor diet and life-style habits?

Now is the time to:

  • • Increase energy
  • • Improve weight loss
  • • Improve memory
  • • Learn which foods to eat(organic vs. non organic)

Come join us 6-7PM, January 14, at the Tiffani Kim Institute for a educating detox workshop. This class will be led by a Clinical Expert from Metagenics, a premier nutraceutical company. Along with our Acupuncturists Jeanie Bussell and Caroline Jung, you will learn all there is to know about detox and a healthy lifestyle. Space is limited. Please call 312.260.9000 to reserve a seat to this educational nutrition workshop. Find additional details here.

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Answers to Fresh Breath for the Holidays

by Tiffani on December 19, 2012

Everyone dreads being that person with the bad breath. Most people chew gum to hide the odor, while others don’t even notice. Unfortunately, everyone around him or her has to suffer because people are too polite to mention to a coworker or friend that they have horrible breath. Maybe you are that very person who no one wants to get to close to. Well there are remedies to help refresh your breath and your social life!

There are two major groups of bad breath: temporary bad breath and chronic bad breath. Temporary bad breath occurs after eating certain foods that have a strong odor, such as garlic, onions, alcohol, and after smoking. These odors only last for a short period of time and are easily removed with a good brushing of the teeth or a gum cover-up.

Chronic bad breath is when someone constantly smells foul. Most people overestimate and think they suffer from chronic bad breath. The only way to know for sure is to ask a close friend or family member if you have bad breath. Using the mouth cupping method is not accurate. You can also scrape your tongue with a spoon and smell the drying residue. This still will not give you a good read on what your breath smells like. Just ask someone. It will allow them to tell you the truth without embarrassing you.

First, what causes that gnarly odor is quite simple. This horrible odor comes from anaerobic bacteria that live inside your mouth. Anaerobic means that these bacteria can survive with little to no oxygen. Actually, some anaerobic bacteria die from the presence of oxygen. Anaerobic bacteria thrive on the epithelial cells, the tissue inside your mouth. The main source of bad breath does not stem from the teeth, but in fact from deeper inside the mouth. Yes, in between the teeth can house the anaerobic bacteria, but the back portion of the tongue is the main culprit. The section of the tongue, which leads up to the throat, is where the unwanted bacteria really like to linger. Most people will brush their teeth and floss in hopes to prevent bad breath, but they do not attack the main source, the tongue.

The bacteria will build up on the tongue throughout the day caused by food remainders and nasal leakage.

You may notice worse breath when you are sick. This is because the nasal cavity empties out to the throat bringing with it more bacteria that settle on the tongue. There are many ways to help kill this unwanted odor. While brushing your teeth make it a routine to either brush your tongue or use a tongue scrapper to remove that layer of white residue. Also, bacteria can be found on the roof of your mouth. You can give that a quick scrub down as well. Flossing is always a need to do. Every single day ladies and gentlemen! After a full day of eating your teeth have collected food bits that cannot be brushed out with a toothbrush. You must use floss to remove the remaining food and plaque in between the teeth. Another great way to kill anaerobic bacteria is by using mouthwash. The alcohol in mouthwash will kill the bacteria and leave you with a fresh minty breath. Everyone can agree this is a much more pleasant smell.

Everything is based on healthy eating! Another common cause of chronic bad breath is due to GI problems. It may be caused by an imbalance of bacteria in your stomach. The gut is full of good and bad bacteria. If you have an excessive amount of bad bacteria harvesting in your stomach this may result in bad breath. If this is the case you should take probiotics. Probiotics are a good form of bacteria that will balance an ailing digestive system. You can find probiotics in yogurts and other foods, but there are also liquid and capsule supplements.

Along with taking probiotics, it is important that you drink eight classes of water a day. Staying hydrated is important for a fresh breath. A dry mouth is a stinky mouth. This is important because drinking water will help with a steady scheduled bowl movement. Drinking water and eating fibrous foods help clean the system of any decomposing food that remains stagnant in your stomach and intestines. The smell from these foods can actually travel up through the esophagus and out of your mouth. It’s very unpleasant, so drink your water and eat well! Drinking acidic drinks such as juices and coffees can also cause an imbalance in your digestive system, leading to bad breath.

With all the holiday parties you are attending in the next few weeks it is vital that you have refreshing breath. This may be especially important on New Year’s Eve when you are trying to find that special someone to kiss at midnight.

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Avoiding Holiday Weight Gain

by Tiffani on December 19, 2012

The holiday season is a great time of the year to spend with family and friends, but it’s also a time when we’re surrounded by fatty food and turkey comas. The holidays are centered around celebration and feasting on foods that are delicious, but not quite healthy for us.

We’re all merry during the festivities, but then comes the New Year when we look at the scale and realize the number has leaped an undesired amount. This is usually when we all vow to lose weight for our New Year’s resolution. Statistically we can see this resolution take action with the skyrocketing amount of new gym memberships solely in the month of January. Many gyms will sign 30-50 percent of new members at the start of the New Year, but more than 75 percent of those members stop going after a few months. Why don’t we skip ahead and end this year on a high note of health and beauty?

The first thing you must understand is why you eat more during the holidays to prevent this from happening. Many people eat more because of the stress that coincides with the holiday season. It’s not all glitz and glam. Planning an event or balancing the checkbook can be extremely stressful for anyone, and many people see food as a way of comfort. Another reason is the changing weather: Naturally, we’re prone to eat more as a way to keep warm during the colder months. Also, with the cold weather brings lazy people. No one wants to go for a run in 30-degree weather. We’d rather curl up next to the warm fire and enjoy a glass of wine.

Here are a few tips to avoid weigh gain:

1. Why start your New Year’s resolution on January 1st? Set boundaries for yourself now. Create a holiday eating and exercise plan for the last month of the year. If you start off with a goal it is easier to avoid those tempting goodies.
2. Do not go to a party hungry! Eat a snack or even a small meal before going so you don’t immediately load your plate with food. If you arrive full of healthy food from your own kitchen, it’s easier to resist the spread at the party.
3. Portion control: At a party you’re allowed to treat yourself to some yummy snacks, but in moderation. Serve yourself little portions so you can experience the food without gaining the extra pound or two.
4. Don’t be a grazer at a party. Go and mingle! It’s a time of celebration with your friends and family. Spend the time away from the food table, and enjoy the company of others.
5. Limit how much you drink. First of all, alcohol can cause you to gain weight if you don’t drink it in moderation. Along with this, it may cause you to lose your inhibitions and eat the entire buffet.
6. Take a walk after the party. This is a great way to wind down the night. It doesn’t have to be a long walk, but enough to stretch your legs and work off some of those extra calories. Have someone join you. Maybe it could lead to a romantic stroll!

Have a fabulous (and skinny) holiday!


 

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