Here in the Philippines, hyperhidrosis is loosely termed as “pasma.” Many alternative medicine practitioners have recommended ways to supposedly address excessive sweating of the palms and feet. Among these is soaking the hands or feet in warm water saturated with salt or dousing the affected area with the first urine of the day. The only plausible explanation for the two alternative treatments that many scientists can think of is osmosis, or drawing out excess water from the body using the high solute concentration of saltwater or urine. The warm urine or water also helps soothe and relax the nerves. Although some attest to the efficacy of the two treatments, they may prove tedious and obviously unsanitary, especially since the first urine of the day has higher bacterial levels—and probably ultimately ineffective in many cases.
Herbs also supposedly help control excessive sweating. Among the remedies that are being advocated by herbalists are:
● Sage: Herbalists recommend boiling 4 tablespoons of pure and potent sage, purchased from an herbal store rather than from a grocery, in 2 cups of water for 5 minutes and drinking it before bedtime for not more than a month. Before taking this herbal decoction, one should consult a doctor especially when pregnant.
● Walnut leaves: Used as bathwater in combination with oak bark, eucalyptus leaves and witch hazel, a decoction of walnut leaves assists in the cleaning of sweat ducts and reduces the size of sweat glands, leading to less sweat.
● Astragalus: A widely-used Chinese herb known as huang chi, astragalus is a vasodilator that corrects abnormal sweating by removing excess water in the body. It is usually taken in powder or capsule form, not exceeding 1500 mg per day.