Seborrheic Dermatitis Remedies - Ted's Q&A

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ACV for Dandruff -- Caused Scalp Odor?

Posted by Holly on 04/05/2009

I tried a mixture of ACV (Trader Joe's brand) and water, about 50/50 or 60/40, to treat itching scalp/dandruff, but only one time because of a side effect. I washed my hair, used this mixture with a squeeze bottle all over my head, left it on for a little while (maybe 10-15 minutes?), then washed it off. At the time it provided immediate relief to the itch, but afterwards my head smelled, even after anytime I washed it. This lasted for about a week. It was a distinct odor, which I think was probably a fungus odor. Because of that, I was afraid to try it again. Not sure if that was a good sign or bad sign. Any thoughts on what happened here? I couldn't find similar feedback on the EC website.

Just some background. I believe I could have a yeast overgrowth problem, which I came across while researching rash and itchy skin issues. I made a drastic diet change, and the rash got much worse the next day, then gradually improved. My scalp itch became much worse at the same time that happened, then lessened as things improved. It still won't go away though. None of the dandruff shampoos work, of course. It seems minor since I don't get noticeable flakes (only see small traces if I scratch, which I try not to) or patches of any sort, but the itching is a nuisance, and it is lingering. It tends to itch less right after being washed, and gradually worsen until the next wash. Thank you in advance for any feedback.

Replied by Ted
Bangkok, Thailand
383 posts

Dear Holly:

A fungus, whether it's candida or yeast infections generally grows at pH at 5 or below. However, an active pH will grow in the range around pH of 3.5 to 5. Now ACV vinegar's pH without water has a pH of about 3.5. If it's mixed with water the pH rises to around 4- 5, which is the active or optimum growth of pH. To kill a fungus, however, my methods generally used either a simple distilled vinegar, or ACV that's undiluted to make sure the pH is below 4. However the most common pH I do used is generally at alkaline pH where it's pH is about 9 or above. A milk of magnesia solution (whichis Magnesium hydroxide) for example has pH of 9.5-10. The pH differentials between an optimum pH of fungus whose pH is 5.0 or below for example is at least 4.5 differentials, killing more fungus more effectively. This is why my approach as generally been alkaline. Most biological systems are limited by three things that Mother Nature employs for the last billion year. You can say it's the billion year old remedy to rid of most pathogen and it doesn't have to use any toxic chemicals either. She uses three things: salinity, temperature and pH.

I recently had one person in Thailand who had a fungal skin problem that simply does not work using any known antifungals or antibiotic therapy and spent the last 2 weeks in the hospital without relief. And had a severe itch, the kind that you would want to tear the skin off the body as in the movie Hellraiser and liked it. The remedy that was used was a milk of magnesia solution (that's 8% magnesium hydroxide) and generally without dilution that's applied to the area and the itch is removed. The condition was finally relieved on the second day after suffering for over a month. To help reduce some biofilms an addition of 10% xylitol powder (pure) or mannitol is mixed into the solution, then is applied. The fungus that smells the worse, at least for me is the black mold fungus, which is found in most houses with a flooded basement, leaky roof itches and smell green.

There is another stronger remedy I used if the above remedy is not used. It's the 10% addition of ammonium bicarbonate, but if that's not available then it's ammonium chloride 10%. This produces a burning and stinging sensation, which is one way I test for presence of fungus. When they die, it produces that sensation for a couple of minutes. But in a long term fungus that goes really deep in the skin, it's going to last longer.

There is another one I found that maybe required also. In event of a severe entire body skin fungus infections. Currently these agressive fungus is unresponsive to most conventional therapy anyway, but the remedy is quite simple: 1/2 teaspoon of sea salt in 1/2 glass of water. Some people may experience headaches if taken too much, but it seems people who do have fungus that I know of (there may be exceptions) don't have problem and can easily take 1/2 teaspoon of sea salt in 1/2 glass of water 3 times a day. This is the second method that mother nature has employed by making thing alkaline, which is why the ocean's water are so sterile. You don't see spoiling oceans in general. That's because of hyperosmality or high salinity that kills most of the pathogens. Besides mother' pH in the Ocean is 8.0 exactly, but with this Global Warming (more like solar system warming that occurs whenever our solar system crosses the gravitational plane of the milky way), the ocean's water becomes more acid to pH of 7.8 due to increased carbon dioxide, mostly from warming of the sun's radiation as more frequent gravitational disruption on the sun's surface to cause more solar radiation, sending more to earth causing dried plants to burn slowly resulting in increased Co2, causing more acid ocean, but still a sterile one. Even a mixture of sea salt and adding baking soda with milk of magnesia to get a pH of 8, like the real ocean can also get similar results too. Although a salt stings the eye, much like our shampoo, since they use salt (sodium chloride) as a shampoo thickener, instead of the superior anti fungal ammonium salts used as a shampoo thickener on the issue of getting nicer smell as ammonium salts give off undesirable, but weak ammonia odors.

The simplest of all remedy even without a milk of magnesia, but a much milder solution is to prepare a baking soda solution, say 10% and no rinsing of solution. Yeast are generally acid in nature and survive at pH of 5. The problem about his is most cosmetic makers know that the skin's pH is 5.5, which is a pH that is very close to optimum conditions of the fungus growth. So if a person who had a history of yeast infection, high sugar and eat acid forming food, or bicarbonate depleting foods such as cola, then the pH of the skin can easily drop below 5.5 to a level optimum for fungus growth. Hence, my favorite approach of eliminating fungus has been alkaline approach, due to pH diffeerntial as well as maybe drink sea salt, to keep the body more saline, and perhaps at different times, after sea salt I may take 1/2 teaspoon of baking soda twice or three times a day. A sea salt and baking soda can't be mixed together as they have a laxative effect.

Therefore, alkalinity and salinity is the common approach. But if I am bound by tradition then the proper use of a vinegar is not to dilute otherwise the pH will be close to optimum fungus condition for growth around 4.5-5. Most pathogens, regardless of what they are fungus or bacteria, can't generally survive at pH above 9, or preferably at 9.5 that is generally harmless to larger organism. But pathogens are pH and osmolarity sensitive.


Replied by Barbara
So. Florida, USA

Can you give more details about the Milk of Magnesia and Ammonium Cloride treatment for SD of the scalp? How long should this solution remain on the scalp. Is it a one time treatment or must it be repeated until the condition is cured? If repeated, how frequently should it be done? Any further details would be appreciated. Thank you.