Thank you for posting this woman’s case here.
As you have noted, underarm odour is related to the flora of our body. The microorganisms which inhabit the skin, much like the microorganisms in the gut, produce different compounds as a part of their normal metabolism. These compounds can contribute to the odour which is produced.
Other things which can affect odour include skin pH, hormones, the use of topical products, and detoxification, as many toxins are eliminated via the sweat. When the composition of the sweat changes (as it can hormonally or due to other influences), the odour may change simply because different food sources exist for the microbes inhabiting the skin.
Kemper M, et al. Significant Reduction of Body Odor in Older People with a pH 4.0 Emulsion. Cosmetics. 2015 May 11;2(2):136-45. https://tinyurl.com/ybvnpmjk
Natsch A. Biochemistry and Genetics of Human Axilla Odor. InSpringer Handbook of Odor 2017 (pp. 123-124). Springer, Cham.
Gildersleeve KA, et al. Body odor attractiveness as a cue of impending ovulation in women: evidence from a study using hormone-confirmed ovulation. Hormones and behavior. 2012 Feb 1;61(2):157-66. https://tinyurl.com/y98dprhk
Aruoma OI, et al. Iron, copper and zinc concentrations in human sweat and plasma; the effect of exercise. Clinica Chimica Acta. 1988 Sep 30;177(1):81-7. https://tinyurl.com/yd9n5lks
About a year ago, I was at a talk at a probiotics conference given on the topic of armpit odour. In the investigation they had performed, similar to a faecal microbial transplant, they transplanted the underarm flora from an individual without undesirable odour to someone who had armpit odour. They found that this process was able to impact the odour of the individual who had the poor smell only if there was a genetic relationship between them. Another part of their study found that diet, and increased vegetable intake, improved underarm odour.
Callewaert C, et al. Towards a bacterial treatment for armpit malodour. Exp Dermatol. 2017 May;26(5):388-391. https://tinyurl.com/yabsys72
Topical use of clay, a drawing agent, and dry skin brushing supports the removal of toxins from the skin. I have not used either of these for the reduction of armpit odour, but a simple Google search shows that many others do, in particular using bentonite clay. She may want to try applying a thin film of bentonite clay nightly for a period of a week to see if that has an impact. One thing I have tried and have found to be effective for armpit odour is the probiotic soap from Dr. Ohhira. I do not know if this is available in the UK. I have found that and other products from his skin line to be very effective.
Overall, I think you are doing the right things to address her gut, increase her vegetable intake, and support detoxification. At the moment, I don’t have any supplemental therapies to recommend beyond what you are doing and the topical considerations mentioned here.
I am aware that on more than one occasion, my colleague Antony Haynes, has found that support for the hepatic phase II pathway of glucuronidation has brought almost instant resolution to clients with very smelly armpits. Therefore, in addition to supporting the gut microbiome, there may be value in considering glucuronidation support, should the existing programme not bring the desired results.
Ca-D-Glucarate (BRC): 1 caps with breakfast & dinner, and consider doubling the dose if no or only minor improvements are made.
Please consider these suggestions in light of the other clinical information pertaining to this individual. If you have any more information about the specific problems this individual is experiencing, further refinement of these suggestions may be considered. I hope this information is helpful, and if you have any further questions or information specific to the problems this individual is experiencing, please do provide feedback.
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