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There are hygiene habits you secretly do or maybe don’t do that you wouldn't want your friends or family to find out about. Let alone the person you’re crushing on. But what if I told you these seemingly dirty activities could actually benefit your health? Yep, today we are discussing and breaking down all your gross and eccentric “behind closed door” type of activities that may actually be surprisingly good for you!

1. Farting

Call it flatulence, passing gas, fizzling, tooting, whatever you want to name it, Farting is actually good for your health. I know it may not be proper social etiquette, at least out loud, at the dinner table or on a first date, but farting is totally healthy.

When you eat, you don't swallow just your food. You also swallow air, which contains gasses like nitrogen and oxygen. Small amounts of these gasses travel through your digestive system as you digest your food. Other gasses like hydrogen, carbon dioxide, and methane are made when food is broken down in the large intestine. All of these gasses in the digestive system have to escape somehow, so guess what, they come out as farts!

In fact, a typical healthy person might pass wind between 5 and 20 times a day. Or depending on what type of foods you are eating, you could be creating the equivalent of 1 liter of gas every single day in your body.

And it also helps with creating a diverse microbiome which is super important to your health in many ways. On the other hand, farts are also a great indicator of your health on the opposite end as well. Conversely, if you are letting them rip way too often, more than the average, this could indicate that you have a food allergy or some sort of gastrointestinal issue like IBS, chrons, Celiac disease, etc.

And for those who are watching this and are a little shy about the whole whoopie cushion sounding process, just know that holding in your gas can limit the motility of the bowels leading to things like constipation and bloat. I don't know how many times people come to see me in the ER for this. Thinking it's something far worse when it is really just stored up gasses in the digestive tract, believe it shows up on X-rays, and See this more than you could ever know. So verdict about farting: in the right social setting let er’ rip. I promise it's a bodily process for a reason and it is keeping you healthy.

2. Not Cleaning Out Your Ears

You’ve heard the phrase mind your own beeswax, well if you believe the experts you may not even want to mind your own. I’ll explain. Ears actually have their very own internal cleaning mechanism and when people use a cotton swab or Qtip as it’s sort of widely known, to remove ear wax, oftentimes this can cause damage to the ears. In fact, if you check closely on the packaging it usually will warn against actually sticking the little cotton swabs in your ear. And believe me, I have seen a lot of ear injuries in the Emergency department caused by just that. Sticking cleaning utensils into ears when they really just don’t belong there. I see things like wax impaction, perforated eardrums, lost tips of cotton swabs, or other cleaner objects that fall off and cause further complications… So just don't do it.

Oh and here's the other part that's super important to realize. Having earwax is not actually a sign of poor hygiene. In fact, quite the opposite, Earwax or the medical term cerumen is there for good reasons. For starters it’s a natural moisturizer, preventing the skin inside the ear from becoming too dry, and it also traps dirt and dust before it goes too deep into the canal. Earwax also absorbs things like dead skin cells, and other debris like bacteria or say creepy crawlies or infectious organisms from reaching your inner ear.

Now if you fear you may have an excessive buildup of earwax that is causing hearing issues or say problems with your equilibrium or whatever is the case, definitely have a healthcare provider look inside your ear and have them use instruments specifically designed to remove earwax. Sometimes they can recommend drops to help this overproduction situation. But all in all, earwax is not a reflection of uncleanliness, it is typically a sign of normal healthy ears. Now if you want to wipe around the outside that’s fine, but don’t stick random things into your ears.

3. Pubic Hair

To remove or not to remove that is the question. This may all boil down to preference when it comes to the hair design of your nether regions but from a health standpoint, not removing one’s pubic hair may actually come with some health benefits believe it or not.

Now, of course, there are some people who prefer to work with a clean slate if you will, and have their pubic hair partially or fully removed or even say bedazzled, by all means, have at it, do what makes you happy. But did you know that having some hair in that region can actually offer a degree of protection against certain pathogens? Yes, sir, there was a small study done put of that correlated pubic hair grooming with a higher incidence of STIs. In other words, they concluded that hair down there may act like nose hairs for your nostrails in that it traps dirt, debris, and other potentially harmful microorganisms or things that can cause infection or bacteria from entering.

Furthermore when one does not remove their hair down below via waxing, plucking or whatever your removal agent of choice is, you obviously then reduce your risk of injury in the form of cuts, burns, boils, inflamed hair glands, etc. I think we can all attest that these things just don’t sound pretty or feel that great. And believe me, I do not like treating them in the ER. So regardless of whether you have 1 hair, all the hairs, or no hair at all make sure you are keeping your nether regions clean as you would the rest of your body.

4. Touching Dirt

Although some may view touching dirt well as just that, dirty. It may actually have super impressive health benefits. Now they may not seem to have a correlation from afar but the soil-based organisms that are found in dirt do in fact support your immune response and microbiome. And according to experts, these good bacteria help to crowd out harmful pathogens and fight off bad bacteria that bind to your gut wall.

Additionally, in 2004 one such study out of London found an oncologist injecting lung cancer patients with a common soil bacteria called Mycobacterium vaccae to see if it could prolong her patient’s lives. She found that the patients studied reportedly were happier, expressed more vitality, and had better cognitive functioning.

In another study, a neuroscientist at the University of Bristol injected M. vaccae into mice and subjected them to a series of stress tests. The ones who had the soil bacteria showed far less stressed behavior than their untreated counterparts—in fact, they acted as if they were on antidepressants. He concluded that the bacteria activated groups of neurons in the mouse brains responsible for producing serotonin. So no I'm not telling you by any means to go inject this weird soil bacteria into your body. No way. But you could start by just going outside and sticking your bare hands or feet in your garden. Although it may feel weird at first or you may have to fight the urge to run inside and wash your hands with antibacterial soap. There is a lot of research out there that suggests an intimate connection between the immune system, emotional health, and this type of soil bacteria.

5. Hocking Loogies

I know, I know, gross, but what exactly does it mean to hock a loogie, and is it good for you? Or what can it at the very least tell you about your health?

In a nutshell, mucus is sort of like a gel-like watery substance that you’ll find in your nose and sinuses. Phlegm on the other hand is a thicker secretion made in say your, mouth, throat, and lungs. But these types of gross bodily secretions actually serve an important role in keeping certain parts of your body hydrated and protected. In fact, I've heard it described as if your body was a nightclub, mucus would be the bouncer, located at the door and ready to kick out anything causing trouble. Soooo when a sickness-causing agent like say a virus or bacteria enters your body, cells in the body that produce mucus kick into overdrive and beef up the goo in order to sequester those germs. Now typically this type of mucus will see itself to the door and clear out of the body on its own, but sometimes it needs a little extra push out of the body. Like, say as coughing, spitting, or even blowing your nose.

So in the proper social setting maybe it's not okay to just hock one up but from the comforts of say your home, or away from the crowd you may just want to get that mucus out of you because you never know what type of bacteria or germs is binding to and trying to expel from your body.

And your flem, it can also tell you a lot about what else is going on inside your body. For instance, if you notice that your normal clear or pearly white flem or mucus starts to change consistency or color, drama might be going down inside your body.

And if you have excess flem or you know a guy that is always's hocking one up, this could be a sign of a food issue, allergy, acid reflux, smoking irritant, or have something more serious like a bacterial or viral infection. And if your flem starts to take on more of a yellowish color, it could be because you're dehydrated. So do yourself a favor, expel it out of your body, pay attention to it because it may just truly be telling you what’s going on with your health. On the other hand, please do be courteous and don't just spit anywhere and everywhere.

1. Genetics

Time to dust off the old family albums to see if hair loss runs in the family. This my friends may just be the biggest culprit behind your current or future hair loss! You may have heard it be called male or female pattern baldness before or maybe even androgenetic alopecia, but hereditary-pattern baldness is the most common cause of hair loss. In some people, you can recognize it pretty quickly because hair is lost in a well-defined pattern, beginning above both temples. Over time, the hairline then recedes to form sort of an "M" shape. Others may notice a widening of the part or thinning on the crown of the head, but this natural occurrence and condition are caused by some combo of genetics passed down from say your mom’s side of the family, or maybe your dad’s side, that plus hormone levels called androgens can come into play here as well. Upwards of 40% of people will experience a more obvious form of this hereditary pattern of baldness as compared to those whose hair just thins out as they age. And not to scare you or anything but this can begin as early as your 20s or 30s or even later in life say after menopause for women. In other words, this isn't just an old dude’s sort of issue, this can affect anyone at any age, especially if it runs in your family.

2. Medications

It could be the wacky tobacky, or it could be the other legal prescriptions you take every day to keep an ailment under control but unfortunately, medications, in general, could be the root of your hair loss problem. You know when you watch those commercials and they list all the side effects? Well, chances are hair loss or hair falling out may just very well be one of those side effects listed. Certain ingredients within the medications could be toxic to your hair follicles or cells that are responsible for hair growth. And when these follicles become damaged, the normal hair growth cycle is disrupted leading to hair loss.

Curious as to which medications are commonly linked to hair loss? Here are just a few: Blood thinners like warfarin, antidepressants like Prozac or Zoloft, beta-blockers, Cholesterol-lowering medications, Acne fighting scripts like Accutane, and even immune-suppressing drugs like those used to treat autoimmune conditions like lupus and rheumatoid arthritis as well as the more obvious one like chemotherapy drugs, can all cause hair loss. If you are concerned that a drug you are taking may be making you lose your hair, ask your doctor or a pharmacist for a complete list of potential side effects of your medication. Or ask your physician if you could possibly reduce your dosage or switch your medication for something that has less impact on your hairline.

3. Infections

This could be viral, fungal, bacterial, no matter the type of infection, they all have the possibility of wreaking havoc on your hairline. I’ll give you a few quick examples but honestly, there are so many infections out there that could cause this issue. Ringworm for example is a fungal infection that is especially common in children and athletes. Ringworm of the scalp, called tinea capitis, can cause your head to become scaly and your hair to fall out, usually in patches, but luckily this fungal infection is easily treated with antifungal medication, which will also stop the loss of hair. Another one I see a lot in the ER, is sexually transmitted infections like HIV, gonorrhea, chlamydia, and even syphilis, they can all be responsible for balding or thinning of the hair. Beyond other more obvious reasons to see your doctor and treat an STI, not spreading infection, cancers, and other health problems that may arise from having a sexually transmitted infection but when it comes to hair loss specifically treating an underlying infection like this can restore hair growth and prevent future hair loss as well.

4. Hats Or Beanies.

Know someone who doesn't leave their house without a hat on? Are you that person? You may just want to listen up to what I am about to say. Although it’s a bit unlikely to be the main cause of a person going bald, hats can however speed up the balding process especially if it's already happening or if they are predisposed genetically. What do I mean by that exactly? Well, when you put a hat on or take it off repeatedly that could have some serious consequences to the hairs on your head, especially if the hat doesn't fit your head properly. Like maybe your cowboy hat or beanie fits a little too snug or rubs funny in a certain spot. Well, consider this you could be pulling out the hairs on your head that are already loosely attached. And that’s just for starters, if a hat is too tight it could also cut off air and blood supply to your hair follicles. Making an already bad hair loss situation even worse. So the moral of the will you go bald story, make sure your hats fit properly and maybe don’t wear it every day. Give your scalp a little time to breathe, that way you don't cut off the blood flow to your hair follicles.

5. Diet

You’ve heard of, you are what you eat, well this may ring even more true for your hair as well. To put it simply, if you have a deficiency in your diet, chances are you are more likely to have an umm deficiency in your hairline as well. It should come as no surprise that the essential vitamins and nutrients you get from a healthy well-balanced diet, sets your body up for success and leads to optimal health outcomes. Or the Cliff notes version: Poor nutrition, an imbalanced diet, restrictive fad diets, protein deficiencies, too little iron, too much vitamin A, for instance, all of these examples or even just one of these issues with your diet, can most certainly result in hair thinning, hair loss, or even baldness. And that my friends doesn't even take into account genetics that may be fighting your hairline along the way as well. If you want the best possible chance for good hair on just a very basic, controllable level, make sure you are getting a good well-balanced diet.

6. Pregnancy & Birth Control

After a pregnancy, those same hormone levels can suddenly drop off in the body, which can cause hair thinning and hair loss. The same could go for discontinuing oral contraceptives as well. For instance, immediately after stopping birth control, it is common for one to experience more than normal hair falling out. This sort of hormonal stress or imbalance of coming off the pill or post-pregnancy hair loss is called telogen effluvium and could last for months or even years afterward. The good news is that this kind of hair loss is usually temporary or reversible—meaning the hair typically grows back once the hormones in the body go back to normal levels. If you’re concerned you may have a hormone imbalance in your body talk, please to your doctor about this.

7. Stress

Ever feel so stressed you just want to just rip your hair out? Well, I hate to break it to you but turns out stress already ticks that box. Things like: Severe accidents, surgery, becoming very ill, going through a divorce, studying for a major test, honestly basically anything that can cause serious physical stress on your body absolutely has the potential to disrupt the natural cycle of your hair growth. Which can in turn result in disruption of the hair follicle and thinning hair and ultimately hair loss. Losing big clumps of hair? More strands of hair coming than normal? May want to evaluate the stress levels in your life.

Hair isn't the only concerning factor either, in general stress just does crazy things to our bodies and has the potential to disrupt many of the body’s systems and processes, so If you find yourself more stressed than usual, talk to your doctor or some sort of other mental healthcare professional, it’s truly important to manage these stress levels because it could have major implications on your health in ways well beyond your hairline.

8. Hormones

Quick anatomy sesh, your thyroid, is a small little endocrine gland situated at the base of the front of your neck. Hormones produced by your thyroid can have an enormous impact on your health and honestly affect many different processes in your body. But whether one has an underactive thyroid, a medical condition called hypothyroidism, or an overactive thyroid, aka hyperthyroidism, both situations can cause a hormonal imbalance. Very broadly speaking, hormones regulate nearly every function in our body, including (but not limited to) hair growth. So if you have any sort of hormonal imbalance like with say a thyroid issue, this could mean like Elvis, your hair too has left the building. As well as a whole slew of other issues, but curious if you have a thyroid condition? Symptoms may show up in many different ways: anxiousness, trouble sleeping, sensitivity to heat, as well as on your scalp. Maybe you notice all around thinning at first but then it could progress into patches of hair missing and even bald spots. Definitely talk to your doctor if your normal hairs don't seem to be replenishing themselves or if you're experiencing any uniform hair loss.

9. Autoimmune Diseases

Crazy statistic here, autoimmune diseases affect anywhere between 14 and 23 Million Americans. In these types of conditions, one’s immune system mistakenly attacks its own body, and a whole array of side effects or conditions can occur, one of them being hair loss. In fact, one of the most common reasons behind hair loss, especially when it happens to people who are under the age of 50, is having some sort of underlying autoimmune disease.

Lupus, Diabetes, Crohn's Disease, Inflammatory Bowel Disease, skin conditions like Psoriasis. The most common associated autoimmune conditions or byproducts with hair loss? Alopecia Areata. ALOPECIA This is when cells in your immune system surround and attack your hair follicles (the part of your body that makes hair). This attack on a hair follicle causes the attached hair to fall out. The more hair follicles that your immune system attacks, the more hair loss you will have. And get this it affects around 6.5 million people in the US and more than 145 million people worldwide. One will notice it as patches of hair loss but it can progress to complete hair loss on the scalp or alopecia totalis. If someone has an even more severe case, it can evolve into hair loss on the entire body or (alopecia Universalis). Sadly there are no FDA approved medicines for alopecia but there are some injectables and other topical applications that can help with this condition. If you’d like me to do a further deep dive on just this let me know in the comments.

10. Trichotillomania

Also known as Trich for short, this is a hair-pulling disorder in the obsessive-compulsive related disorder broader grouping that is characterized by the repetitive pulling out of one's own hair. There are other self-grooming behaviors that can fall into this body-focused repetitive behaviors as well such as picking, scraping, or biting your skin, nails, or hair often resulting in damage to the body.

Research indicates that about 1 or 2 in 50 people experience trichotillomania in their lifetime and It usually begins in late childhood/early puberty. In childhood, it occurs about equally in boys and girls. By adulthood, 80-90% of reported cases are women.

Hair pulling varies greatly in its severity, location on the body, and response to treatment. Without treatment, this tends to be a chronic condition; that may come and go throughout a lifetime and this could lead to one losing a significant amount of hair or even going bald in places over their lifetime. I have seen and treated many people with this condition in the ER.


As I said before, most baldness is caused by genetics (male-pattern baldness, female-pattern baldness, etc. This type of hair loss unfortunately is not preventable. But other types of hair loss can be reversed or at least slowed with different forms of treatment. That's why it's important to not ignore or put off addressing the symptoms of hair loss. You literally want to get to the root of the problem so that you can try to reverse the hair damage if possible and to make sure the hair loss symptom isn't the sign of some greater underlying health conditions, deficiency, or hormonal imbalances.

Additionally, remember to be gentle with your hair, don’t do things like the brush it or tug on it in a way that may create tension on your follicles. And stay out of direct forms of sunlight or other sources of ultraviolet light. And definitely stop smoking if hair loss is a concern for you. Some studies show an association between smoking and baldness. If you want me to do an entire video on ways that can help grow your hair more, or slow down the hair loss process, please let me know that too in the comments below.

Updated: Apr 13, 2022

Is saffron the life-saving supplement we never knew we needed? Or is it just the next social media buzz vitamin that is not worth the hype or your hard-earned dollars? Well, today we’re breaking it all down.

What is Saffron? Is it good for your brain? Can it help treat depression and increase libido? And what does it do to your memory? Today we’re going to be discussing the top 8 BIGGEST benefits of taking Saffron Supplements. Let’s dive right in.

What is Saffron?

Well simply put, it’s the most expensive spice in the world. With its most pricey offerings costing somewhere between $500 and $5000 dollars for about 1 pound or 450 grams. But not too worry in supplement form it's not that expensive, and should really be considered … But I'm going to pump the breaks there, I’m actually getting ahead of myself. Quick botany or biology lesson. It’s derived from the Crocus Sativus Flower… Saffron specifically refers to dried flowers or little red-like structures or stigmas. And there is way more than meets the eye to the saffron story. It has been used by people for 100’s of years and has many many medicinal and health-promoting properties. Which we’re diving into. Here are the top 8 reasons you need Saffron in your life.

8. Antioxidant

Not sure what antioxidant is? Well, they are basically molecules that protect your cells against free radicals and oxidative stress. Free Radicals are basically crappy unstable atoms that go ham on the body Damaging cells, causing illness, aging, diseases, you name it. So if something is anti-oxidant or in this case an UBER POWERFUL thing that goes against oxidants, this plant compound can basically kick some serious free-radical butt.

Bear with me while I geek out here for a second. Saffron’s All-star antioxidant roster includes crocin, crocetin, safranal, and Kaempferol. And no there won't be a pop quiz on that later, but just remember that those ingredients have these superhero-type protection powers for the body. And they are also responsible for things like the color of saffron and giving it its distinct taste and aroma for sure, but some research out there suggests that these powerful antioxidants all protect the body against the bad stuff I mentioned earlier: illness, damaged cells, etc. and that’s only the first reason you may want saffron in your life.

7. Libido

According to researchers and several different studies, taking 30 mg of saffron daily over four weeks found significantly improved erectile function over placebo in men with erectile dysfunction related to antidepressants. Yep, the saffron was suggested to improve the overall function, libido, and satisfaction. And In those who identified as women, a similar study found that taking 30 mg increased sexual desire, and decreased sex-related pain compared to placebos.

6. Treat Depressive Symptoms.

Sayonara Depression, so long to sadness? Well maybe soon. I mean they don’t call Saffron the sunshine spice just because of its color, in fact, this encouraging herb goes way beyond that the call of duty when it comes to treating symptoms of mild to moderate depression. In one recent study, researchers found that taking 30 mg of saffron daily was just as effective as some other prescriptions like Fluoxetine, imipramine, and Citalopram- other more prescribed medications that are used for treating depression. The studied patients in this trial are also said to have experienced fewer side effects from taking saffron than compared to other treatments.

And in other studies, saffron supplements and placebo pills were both randomly given to patients and what they found was that the saffron supplements were significantly more effective at treating different levels of depression. Now if you currently take anti-depressant medication now, I am not saying ditch your current regimen altogether but maybe talk to your doctor about adding it into the mix with your other treatment. Maybe in the near future, we will see saffron take on a much larger role in treating depression.

5. Anti-cancer Properties

Okay don’t freak out but I'm going to share with you a super scary statistic. Nearly 40% of people will be diagnosed with cancer at some point in their lifetime. So as you look around your classroom or workplace and see 10 people hanging around, 4 of those 10 will likely get some form of cancer.

Saffron is as I mentioned earlier super high in antioxidants. In other words, it can neutralize harmful free radicals that cause damage in one’s body aka, leading to things like cancer.

One published study from 2007 found that Saffron and its compounds selectively killed colon cancer cells or greatly suppressed their growth in test tubes… Oh and did not touch normal, non-cancerous cells. It rather left the normal cells unharmed.

In other animal model studies, similar findings were found for Skin, bone marrow, prostate, lung, breast, cervix, and several other cancer cells. Although not widely studied in humans yet, another promising study found that Crocin, the main antioxidant in saffron may make cells in the body more sensitive to chemotherapy drugs as well. So there definitely seems to be some promise in the cancer treatment department when it comes to Saffron and the main compounds it contains.

So there definitely seems to be some promise in the cancer treatment department when it comes to Saffron having anti-cancer properties.

4. PMS

Did you know that a recent study out of London said that Menstrual cramps can cause pain in the body that's almost as bad as having a heart attack? That my friends are terrifying, and although I have never personally suffered from them, I've treated a lot of patients who have pretty bad physical, emotional and psychological symptoms occurring before and during the start of their menstrual cycle.

Luckily here’s where Saffron comes into play. In a study that followed women ages 20-45 years old, they found that taking 30 MG of saffron daily was more effective than a placebo option at treating PMS Symptoms like pain, irritability, headaches, cravings, and so on. And yet another study of 35 women found that merely smelling, yes I said smelling, saffron for 20 minutes at a time, helped lower the stress levels of cortisol in their body and greatly reduced other symptoms like anxiety.

3. Weight Loss

You know we all do it, we get those munchies that lead to gaining that unwanted weight. Well fun fact for ya, saffron may just be the solution to all your late-night snack attacks. Want to drop a few pounds by spring break? Or heck just want your pants to fit a bit better? Well, pay close attention here then. According to one randomized study, folks taking saffron supplements reportedly felt more full and snacked less frequently than those in a placebo group. And over the course of the research, the team saffron group significantly lost more weight than those popping placebos. Now although more research is needed to find out the exact reason why Saffron aids in things like lowering BMI and snacking less, one possible scientific theory is that saffron elevates your mood, which is often associated with curbing one’s desire to snack which is often associated with snacking less.

2. Heart Disease

Want to hear one of the scariest statistics ever? In 2018 nearly 31 million adults were diagnosed with heart disease and nearly 1 out of every four deaths are because of it. Making it the number one killer. So I’ll make this short and sweet, if you are scared of heart disease like maybe it runs in your family? Or you already have high blood pressure and other factors. Saffron should really be considered. Yep in animal and test-tube studies, the crazy strong Antioxidant properties were found to lower blood cholesterol and prevent blood vessels and arteries from clogging. Which are some of the key risk factors for heart disease.

1. Alzheimers

Brain shrinkage, atrophy, brain cell death. This sounds like something out of nightmares.

Sadly no it's a real issue that many around the world deal with. Alzheimer’s disease & dementia are caused by a progressive neurologic disorder that causes a continuous decline in thinking, behavior, and social skills. Yep, we have all seen the notebook and cried or even know someone personally that suffers from this and it is just so sad to see someone go from fully independent and functioning to steadily over time not be able to remember who they are, who their loved ones are or even take care of themselves. All the more reason you may want to start thinking early about Saffron. In a study that followed the effects of Vitamin E, turmeric, and saffron in the treatment for Alzheimer’s disease, researchers concluded that saffron’s antioxidant properties may improve cognition in adults with Alzheimer’s disease.

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