How to Manage Eczema With Diet

Eczema is a skin condition caused by an overactive immune system. The skin gets patches of itchy, red inflammation. The patches can get rough, flaky and even blistery.


Many people who have eczema also have food allergies and/or sensitivities. (Learn more about the difference here.)
 
About 30% of children below 5 years old who are suffering from eczema have at least one food allergy. Interestingly, having eczema also increases your risk of developing food allergies. How does this happen? Researchers aren’t totally sure, but I believe that it is through the gut-skin connection. Everything links back to the health of your gut because of the diversity of bacteria we have there and because it is where both the immune response and inflammatory response largely reside.
 
Even if you don’t have food allergies, there are foods that worsen eczema and lead to outbreaks.
 
If you have eczema, the food that you eat might just be the key to either healing you or intensifying your symptoms.
 
So what are the foods that you should be including in your meals?
 
Anti-inflammatory foods!
 
Now you’ve heard me say a million times that one-size-doesn’t-fit-all! So I’m going to share some examples with you of some foods that can be great for managing inflammation, but that doesn’t mean that they will be a magic fix for YOU. I’m a proponent of testing & customizing! That being said, here are some great places to start.1. Fatty fish — What’s in fatty fish? Omega-3 fatty acids. Omega-3 has powerful anti-inflammatory properties. Salmon, sardines, and mackerel are good choices.
2. Quercetin-rich foods —  Quercetin is one of the most common antioxidants found in plants. It is a natural pigment classified as flavanoids that gives plants their vibrant color. Its antioxidant properties can combat inflammation and symptoms of allergies.

 Foods that contain quercetin are as follows:                      

  • Onions
  • Apples
  • Grapes
  • Berries
  • Broccoli
  • Citrus Fruits

3. Foods with probiotics — Eczema is linked to a dysfunction of the immune system and characterized by inflammation. Some researchers say that eczema starts in the gut.  Your gut is home to millions of helpful microorganisms that keep your gut healthy, and the gut is an extension of the immune system. Thus, when your microbiome in the gut is out of balance, your immune system also starts to behave abnormally.

According to research, people with eczema have less diverse bacteria in their gut microbiome than people who don’t have the condition. That’s likely why probiotics are able to help!
 
Probiotics are live microorganisms found in foods like yogurt, kefir, fermented foods like sauerkraut and fermented pickles, etc. When ingested, they are added to the microorganisms in your gut and help it function optimally (but they don’t live forever and need to be replaced regularly).
 
On the other side, here are some foods that are likely to make your symptoms worse:

  • Food high in preservatives — Since eczema can be triggered with chemical substances, it is best to avoid eating processed foods and fast food. These are full of preservatives, artificial ingredients, and trans fats that flare up the inflammatory response.
  • Sugar-rich foods — Eating lots of sweets can cause your insulin level to go up and this leads to inflammation. If you are craving sweets, that’s a big clue that something needs adjusting in your meal (often, we need more protein to balance our mood and level out cravings, but stress and other feelings can lead to cravings as well).
  • Dairy products and other foods that commonly cause allergy — In addition to dairy products, wheat, gluten, eggs, soy, nuts, and citrus (and foods with these ingredients) are common triggers. You can avoid them and see if it helps your skin clear up or there are testing options available if you’d rather go that route.

 Overall, what you eat is important on all levels! Today we looked at the link between diet and eczema and some things that you can apply to reduce your inflammatory response.
 
It is my passion to work with people like you whose health symptoms are getting in the way of you living life fully and with a sense of freedom in your body. I can help you to regain your health so you can feel great and free to enjoy life fully.
 
If you’re ready to discover where your best health has been hiding, I’d love to connect with you!
Apply for a complimentary Unstoppable Health Discovery Session. http://bit.ly/schedulinghealth (subject to availability).

Until next time, I’m wishing you unstoppable health!~Rebecca

5 Healthy Sunscreen Alternatives

Today we’re going to look at some healthy ways to protect your skin as you get outside to enjoy yourself and nature. But real quick, I want to remind you that my free webinar is this afternoon (Tools to Thrive During COVID & Beyond–see the details on the right under “upcoming events”).



You may not even think twice before lathering up with sunscreen, but I want to share some info with you that is important for your skin health and overall health.

Sunscreen is a body care product applied on the skin to protect it from damage brought by the UV rays of the sun. It is also classified as an over-the-counter (OTC) drug by the FDA because it does the following:

  1. Reduce the risk of developing cancer
  2. Prevent sunburn
  3. Decrease signs of aging

 There are two types of sunscreen: Chemical and physical.
Chemical sunscreen absorbs UV rays while the physical or mineral sunscreen blocks UV rays.
 
While sunscreen is widely used for sun protection, issues have risen in recent years surrounding the safety of its ingredients.
 
Because sunscreen is supposed to be applied on the skin as often as you are exposed to the sun, its ingredients shouldn’t be harmful to your tissues (you may have heard this before “If you can’t eat it, it doesn’t belong on your skin”). 
 
Sunscreens may contain penetration enhancers and other toxic chemicals that can disrupt your hormones or even increase your risk of developing related disorders. Also, when you apply a sunscreen spray, it is possible to accidentally inhale it, which can damage your lungs (easy tip there: hold your breath!).

To help you stay safer, I have compiled some healthy alternatives to protect you from both the harm of the sun and of unhealthy sunscreens.

  1. Wear protective clothing – After basking under the sun for 15-20 minutes, cover up. Clothes are the best sunblock because they cover your skin and absorb or reflect sunlight.
  2. Seek shade – The sun is at its harshest from 10am to 2pm, so if you can mostly avoid the sun during that time, it is best for your skin. After all, you only need 10-30 minutes of the midday sun every day to help your skin produce vitamin D.
  3. Eat healthy – Here’s a little secret to achieve getting a tan while minimizing the risk of getting burned: eat foods high in carotenoids! Since carotenoids are plant pigments, you can find it in fruits and vegetables that have bright red, yellow, and orange hues, such as carrots, squash, apricots, and grapefruit. Antioxidants also help your skin fight any damage, including sun damage. Here’s a list of high antioxidant foods.
  4. Use seed-oil sunscreens – Just like other types of sunscreen, not all seed-oil sunscreen is created equal. What I recommend the best is the red raspberry oil, which provides natural SPF of 28 to 50 and offers protection for both UVA and UVB rays. Aside from sun protection, red raspberry oil has also other benefits for the skin that are great for eczema and other skin disorders.
  5. Use natural sunscreens – There are also products in the market that are made from natural ingredients. Make sure to check the ingredients to avoid harmful ingredients and use the most recent EWG Safe Sunscreen List to easily choose the best sunscreens for your needs.

 It is my passion to work with people like you whose health symptoms are getting in the way of you living life fully and with a sense of freedom in your body. I can help you to regain your health so you can feel great and free to enjoy life fully.
 
If you’re ready to discover where your best health has been hiding, I’d love to connect with you!
Apply for a complimentary Unstoppable Health Discovery Session. http://bit.ly/schedulinghealth (subject to availability).

Until next time, I’m wishing you unstoppable health!~Rebecca

3 Natural Sunburn Remedies That You Can Find in Your Kitchen

Summer is fast approaching! Even though many of us are still sheltering-in-place, getting outside and enjoying nature is one of the healthiest, most uplifting things you can do. We all know that too much sun can leave your skin damaged. I personally have to really guard against this because I’ve always been prone to sunburns. So let’s talk about how you can help your skin naturally if you get too much sun. But real quick, I want to let you know that I am offering a free webinar next week (Tools to Thrive During COVID & Beyond–see the details on the right under “upcoming events”).


 
Your skin has cells that produce melanin–a dark pigment that protects the skin from the ultraviolet rays. When you stay under the sun for a long time, your skin cells produce a lot more melanin–That’s how a tan happens.
 
But too much of anything is not good, right? Prolonged exposure to the UV rays causes damage to your skin cells’ DNA. Your skin cells can run into trouble when they can’t produce enough melanin quickly enough to protect you.
 
This can predispose you to sun damage, sunburns, and even possible skin cancer over time.
 
There are certain factors that affect the severity of your sunburn: your skin color and the harshness of the sun. It’s usually extremely hot during midday, so if you are fair-skinned, your skin can get sunburned even when you expose yourself to 10-15 minutes.
 
You may see redness on the sunburned area 3-4 hours after exposure to the sun because the blood vessels in your skin dilate. The increased supply of blood in your skin is an attempt to repair your damaged skin cells.
 
The best prevention for sunburn is to not overdo your sun exposure. Wear hats, protective clothing, and non-toxic sunblocks (we’ll talk more about this next week), but let me be clear, the sun is really good for your health in a lot of ways (bone health, heart health, immune system, etc). It’s not healthy to overdo sun exposure and get sunburned, so that’s what we want to avoid. And if you do get burned, here are three natural sunburn remedies that you can easily grab from your kitchen. Your skin will thank you for this!

Apple cider vinegar

Apple cider vinegar is made from fermented apple juice and contains 1-11% of acetic acid. Since it has antiseptic properties and a cooling effect, it soothes sunburns and speeds up the healing process.
 
You have to dilute it with water, though, so it doesn’t irritate your skin. There is no specific vinegar-to-water ratio, but if you tend to have sensitive skin it’s recommended to dilute it more. You can put the dilution in a spray bottle and spray it on your affected skin. You can also take a tepid bath with some apple cider vinegar mixed with the water.
 

Baking soda

Bicarbonate of soda is also antiseptic. It reduces itching and inflammation in sunburn. You can make a paste and apply it on your burned skin, or again, take a cool bath using water with a few handfuls of baking soda.
 

Oatmeal

There’s a reason why a lot of lotions and beauty products have oats in them. Oats have been long known to be one of the best home remedies because of their anti-inflammatory effects. Oatmeal applied on your burned skin can reduce inflammation and relieve pain.
 
The sunburn appearance may only be seen 24-36 hours after your exposure, but healing takes about 3-5 days. Make sure to soothe it well with those home remedies to speed up your skin’s recovery.
 
Stay tuned next week!  I’ll be giving natural sunscreen alternatives and more health care tips!
 
It is my passion to work with people like you whose health symptoms are getting in the way of you living life fully and with a sense of freedom in your body. I can help you to regain your health so you can feel great and free to enjoy life fully.
 
If you’re ready to discover where your best health has been hiding, I’d love to connect with you!
Apply for a complimentary Unstoppable Health Discovery Session. http://bit.ly/schedulinghealth (subject to availability).
Until next time, I’m wishing you unstoppable health!

~Rebecca