Friday, December 7th, 2012 | rosacea | No Comments
I have written in the past about how to determine what triggers your rosacea. Basically, rosacea symptoms can get aggravated by either food or environmental factors.
For the last year or so, we ran a survey on our website that asked visitors what made their rosacea symptoms worse? We received close to 300 responses and while I always thought that food played a major role in the severity of symptoms, the survey results suggest that the environment plays a much bigger role.
So, here are the Top 5 rosacea triggers:
1. Alcohol (36%)
Alcohol was chosen as the worst offender in rosacea flare-ups. Sometimes it is just any alcoholic drink, but some of us get away with drinking certain types of wine or beer.
2. Stress (32%)
It is very difficult to lead a stress-free life and the more we are exposed to stress, the harder it seems to keep rosacea under control.
3. Heat (22%)
Heat causes blood vessels to dilate, which in turn could aggravate rosacea. Hard to escape heat during the summer months and that is the reason why so many people with rosacea have a difficult time during summer.
4. Tomatoes (5%)
While tomatoes do not contain high amounts of histamine, they do contain substances that can stimulate mast cells to release histamine. That is the reason why some rosacea sufferers are sensitive to tomatoes.
5. Chocolate (5%)
Chocolate (like tomatoes) can also have an indirect effect on rosacea.
Tuesday, November 27th, 2012 | rosacea | No Comments
This summer, while driving in an over-heated car to a 4th of July party, I stopped by our local WholeFoods looking for a refreshing drink.
I came across this KeVita drink and it looked really refreshing plus it contains probiotics, so I decided to give it a try.
I didn’t yet realize that it was a sparkling beverage, so while behind the wheel, I started to shake the bottle hard to get the probiotics back into suspension. As I later read on the label, you’re supposed to shake it only gently (since it is carbonated).
Kevita is a non-dairy probiotic sparkling beverage formulated by KeVita founders Chakra Levy and Bill Moses. KeVita starts out with live probiotic cultures that are fermented and then blended with coconut water, tea or fruit and sweetened with Stevia extract (2 out of the 8 flavors are sweetened with cane sugar).
Kevita is organic and the company uses locally produced ingredients (from California) as much as possible.
Probiotics are beneficial bacteria that live in the intestinal tract and have a positive effect on our health by supporting digestion and immune function.
As we all know, stress can have a negative impact on our digestive flora. In addition, our digestive health is further diminished by a poor diet, medications, toxins and chemicals.
Studies have shown that our health can be improved with a constant influx of probiotics to replenish the gut and counteract these negative effects.
What are these probiotics in KeVita (4 billion CFU’s at the time of manufacturing)?
- Bacillus coagulans GBI-30 6086
- L. paracasei
- L. plantarum
- L. rhamnosus
Numerous studies on these bacteria have shown that these probiotics have a positive effect on the host immune response modulation, reduce the negative impact of ‘bad’ bacteria such as Salmonella and have a positive impact on digestion and even our skin.
I can say that KeVita has a positive effect on the digestive system. I have tried different flavors and they all taste great and make you feel better, feel more energized and can reduce bloating and pain in the abdomen. From my experience, these positive effects lasted for about 6-7 days, so you’ll have to drink KeVita at least once a week to prolong the positive health effects.
Remus, D.M. et al (2012) The impact of Lactobacillus plantarum sortase on target-protein sorting, gastrointestinal persistence, and host immune response modulation. J. Bacteriol. Published ahead of print 21 November 2012, doi: 10.1128/JB.01321-12
Dolin, B.J. (2009) Effects of a proprietary Bacillus coagulans preparation on symptoms of diarrhea-predominant irritable bowel syndrome. Methods Find Exp. Clin. Pharmacol. 10: 655-9.
See also: KeVita
This morning, the Today Show presented Allure Magazine’s Best of Beauty awards. One of the products featured on the show was a skin care product that could treat the redness associated with rosacea. While the ingredients seemed interesting with promising science behind it, the number of ingredients seems small for such a complex condition as rosacea.
Avene has an entire line of skin care products that aims to reduce redness and the product featured on the Today Show is called “Eau Thermale Avène Antirougeurs Fort Relief Concentrate for Chronic Redness“. It is for sale for $46 (approximately 1 fl. Oz) and is available (according to the company’s website) only through doctor’s offices.
The company (Avene, a French skin care company) claims that one of the active ingredients, Ruscus Extract, is able to lower the VEGF protein in the skin and thereby reduce the formation of new blood vessels (one of the hallmarks of rosacea). The ruscus extract is also thought to be anti-inflammatory and to help in the constriction of blood vessels.
Another interesting ingredient is Dextran Sulphate. Dextran sulphate is a sulphate salt of a sugar containing polymer and is a popular ingredient in various eye drops products. Many of you may remember reading several discussions on rosacea boards in the nineties about the supposedly “anti-rosacea” effect of excess eye drops that sometimes flows over the skin when you use too much. Avene uses Dextran Sulphate in all of its anti-redness skin care products since it can reduce swelling.
Avene’s “Soothing Cream SPF 25″, which besides the Dextran sulphate and Ruscus extract, contains several sunscreens including Titanium dioxide, Octinoxate and Octocrylene. Many people believe that rosacea sufferers should always protect their skin from harmful UV rays, but I think that including sunscreens in a skin care product that you may use only at night, is not only expensive, but could leave the door open to additional skin irritation.
In any event, Avene has decided to keep the list of ingredients short. Rosacea is a very complex disorder, with many cellular processes and many systems involved including the immune system. I have always believed in more ingredients that work together to effectively treat the many underlying processes that cause rosacea.
Some of Avene’s products have been around for a number of years. In fact, Allure magazine seems to like them as they have recommended Avene products several times during the last 3 years. I did not intend to review Avene’s products here (since I have never used them), but I thought the ingredients were interesting in and of themselves.