No sweat

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Many people have sweaty palms and soles due to stress, anxiety or other reasons unconnected to the heat. They can even break out in copious perspiration because the weather is cold.

The usual reason is a disorder in the body's autonomic or vegetative nervous system. It often happens to kids under six years old as their nervous system is still developing. As the children grow, the sweating stops.

Here are some traditional ways to treat this annoying symptom.

- Pluck a mature vine of lá lốt (lolot or lolot pepper) from the ground, roots and all. Wash the plant, cut it into pieces, place in a saucepan and cover with water. Bring the water to the boil, let simmer for 15 minutes, then remove the pot from the stove and place it on the floor or ground. Now, cover the saucepan with thin cloth and hold your palms and soles alternately in the steam from the pot. When the lolot water has stopped steaming, soak the soles and palms in turn in the warm water for 30 minutes once daily until the sweating stops.

Another way to stop abnormal sweating is to soak the soles and palms in a basin of one part hot water, three parts cold water and one spoon of unrefined salt (or tea grounds) for 15 minutes twice a day.

- For a different approach, make a powder of burnt, crushed ark or arca shell (an arca is a type of mollusk) mixed with a pinch of cinnamon powder and rub it on the soles and palms for ten minutes thrice daily.

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