Safe Cleansers, for the Earth and for your Body

6a00e55255b462883401901b980d3b970b-200wiI encourage everyone to use a holistic approach to their dermatology conditions.
Reducing your exposure to toxic chemicals is a great way to do that.  It can be a challenge at first, but your health is well worth the effort.

Here are some simple cleansing substitutes you can make yourself. They’ll help you avoid bleach, ammonia, alcohol, dyes, fragrances, and detergents, and save money. Be sure to try cleansers on a small, hidden spot of what you are cleaning to make sure it does not cause fading or discoloration of the fabric before more widespread use.

Laundry Detergent: If you use liquid detergent, add half a cup of baking soda at the beginning of the wash.  If you use powdered detergent, add half a cup of baking soda during the rinse cycle.  You can then reduce your detergent by about half.  Try different amounts to see what works best for you.

Fabric Softener: Put two cups of white vinegar in your rinse cycle. Note that vinegar can cause colors to fade a little.

Window Cleaner: Mix three tablespoons of vinegar and one quart of club soda in a spray bottle. Add a squeeze of lemon or lime to air freshener, laundry detergent, and kitchen and tile cleaner for a blast of freshness.

Tub & Tile Cleanser: Mix 1 2/3 cups baking soda, a half cup high-quality liquid soap, a half cup water, and 2 tablespoons vinegar (if you add the vinegar too early it will react with the baking soda.)  

Carpet Cleaner: To absorb big spills, spread cornmeal over the spill. Wait about 15 minutes, then vacuum it up. For stains, a quarter cup biodegradable liquid soap with a third of a cup of water into a blender to make a foam.  Put the foam on the stain and rub. After rinsing, splash vinegar to finish.

Air Freshener: You can absorb odors in the fridge and in your home by putting cups of vinegar or baking soda around the house (on high surfaces to keep out of the reach of kids.)

Drain Clearing: Pour half a cup of baking soda down the sink, add a cup of vinegar. Cover the drain, and then rinse the drain with boiling water and salt. Repeat if it doesn’t work immediately.

There are also a lot of non-toxic household cleaners which are healthier for both your skin and the “skin of the earth” than the traditional cleansers on the market.  Be sure to read the label to avoid being a victim of “greenwashing” (when a product’s label is designed to look environmentally friendly, but the ingredients are the same old toxic mess.)  And as always, keep all cleaning products away from pets and children.

To your health,

Dr. Alan M. Dattner, MD
Holistic Dermatology
New York, New York

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As always, the content of this blog is for information and education purposes only, and should not be used to prevent, diagnose or treat illness; please see your physician for care.


Sunlight Controversy: How much sun is enough? How much is too much?

6a00e55255b462883401901b9799c7970b-200wiThe controversy over sunlight benefit versus danger rumbles on, with new data on both sides of the question.  From the American Academy of Dermatology meeting, two very different pieces of information stand out favoring cautious sunlight protection.  A study recently reported showing an increase in the incidence of melanoma for people who had used tanning beds before the age of 35.  Early damage from excessive light exposure shows up later.
Other studies reported showed that exposure to two times the MED (the minimal amount of light necessary to cause redness of the skin) caused 100 times the amount of messenger RNA for collagenase (the enzyme which breaks down collagen in skin.)  Collagen is the fibrous substance which gives the skin its shape and strength.
Breakdown of collagen is associated with aging and wrinkles.  One half the amount of sunlight necessary to cause redness increased the collagenase activity fourfold.
Furthermore, even one tenth the amount of sunlight exposure necessary to cause redness caused some increase in collagenase activity.
All of the data which was presented demonstrated the various aspects of the process of sun damage leading to aging, at the molecular level.  The speaker is a respected authority on the science of skin aging , so the data appears valid.  I have reviewed other studies in the past which show similar findings, which also lends credibility to his argument.  I will discuss the benefits of sunlight and vitamin D production in later blogs, which inform the other side of this
controversy.  If you sign up for my monthly newsletter, I will email you the top five tips to minimize the effects of solar damage.
Regardless of controversy, sun exposure is a double edged sword with both benefits and dangers.  Living a full life exposes us to both those benefits and dangers; finding the right balance and using protective supplements and
topical antioxidants is the best we can do.To your health,

Dr. Alan M. Dattner, MD

Holistic Dermatology
New York, New York

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As always, the content of this blog is for information and education purposes only, and should not be used to prevent, diagnose or treat illness; please see your physician for care.


Miracle Success-Story in Natural Acne Skincare: Heal Your Skin, Heal Your Life


6a00e55255b4628834019103d2111f970c-320wiWant to get rid of acne naturally?

I see acne and other skin disease as a symptom of underlying problems that need to be shifted. This is radically different than how the majority of my colleagues, the medical literature, and the media see acne, so let me illustrate this with a recent experience a patient had being treated with this perspective.

Erin had acne in her late teens, treated with antibiotics and BCP’s, and again recently with stresses including the death of a close friend and the purchasing a new house with her husband. She recalled periodic abdominal pains plagued her since college, and she had bad cramping and pain with her cycle since September.

I focused first on treating her digestive system, which was disturbed by her previous acne treatment in college. She also mentioned that she was a serious runner who trained for Iron Man competitions, so I mentioned that the digestive enzymes I was about to give her might help her performance.

She followed the diet and supplement regimen carefully and came back with a a definite improvement in her acne, decrease in abdominal bloating, and dramatic reduction in the pain that used to cause her to spend three days with a heating pad on her belly during her menses.

What was most remarkable to me was that she experienced an improvement in her running times during the month of diet changes and supplements. She had been training since December 1st this year, and seemed to be doing much better in this past month. Admittedly, she was training harder, but that did not seem to be enough reason alone to account for her running times per mile on a 12 mile run to decrease from 9 minutes and 30-35 seconds (last year and initially) to 8 minutes and 20 seconds per mile recently! 

Fixing her underlying digestive and hormonal issues not only improved her acne, and abdominal symptoms, but also enabled her to perform to her full capacity.

If you are experiencing any of these issues, and wonder if this kind of treatment might help you, please contact me here.

To your health,

Dr. Alan M. Dattner, MD
Holistic Dermatology & Integrative Medicine

New York

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As always, the content of this blog is for information and education purposes only, and should not be used to prevent, diagnose or treat illness; please see your physician for care. – See more at: http://blog.holisticdermatology.com/#sthash.t5joqS3D.dpuf


The Simplicity of Holistic Medicine

6a00e55255b462883401910308457c970c-200wiMy integrative medicine philosophy is formed on the basis that simple, gentle, and natural solutions be implemented first. Simple solutions are almost always less costly, less time-intensive, and less toxic.

I use good common sense coupled with decades of holistic dermatology experience to evaluate what the situation calls for. With the might of the most powerful modern medicine at our fingertips, we may still choose to approach a skin disease with a cup of tea, if that’s what makes the most sense.

In an urgent situation, after proper evaluation, I might prescribe a full course of steroids if that makes the most sense. I find it absurd, for example, that patients with simple colds are routinely given antibiotics, when there’s no scientific basis for the prescription. It’s as absurd as unleashing an attack dog on a rubber chicken.

How might you apply this philosophy of common sense to your own life?

To your health,

Dr. Alan M. Dattner, MD

Holistic Dermatology
New York, New York

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As always, the content of this blog is for information and education purposes only, and should not be used to diagnose, or treat illness; please see your physician for care.


Fall in Love with Broccoli


Last week I was invited to a raw food vegan community to give a talk on nutrition and the skin.I spoke to a group of “health ministers” who educated people about the benefits and the how to of starting and maintaining a predominantly raw food, vegan diet. Many people thanked me for all of the information I gave them. At the same time, I received a lot of information in the stories of people who had recovered from a number of both minor and serious medical conditions by going on the diet.

It certainly shows that avoiding many of the foods which can set off immune reactions, including not only meat and milk, but excessive grains and sugar, and getting a predominantly green vegetable diet, can be very beneficial.

And as Ann Wigmore and Dr. Gerson showed in the past, raw vegetable juice diet can be curative of a number of conditions. Many people find it difficult to undertake such diets, but those who need to return to the land of the living will have extra motivation to either at that way, or at least move in that direction. Their experience certainly supports my observation that making the right dietary changes away from the norm can lead to profound improvements in health.

I just saw a fun video, made by the fifth grade class of a former campmate of my daughter, which really touts a change from junk food to broccoli. I am sharing the link with you because I think that you will enjoy it, and maybe even get a few young people to think it’s cool to eat better.
This is the kind of education that could lead to a healthier generation, and start curbing our out of sight health costs.

To your health,

Dr. Alan M. Dattner
Holistic Dermatology
New York, New York

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As always, the content of this blog is for information and education purposes only, and should not be used to prevent, diagnose or treat illness; please see your physician for care.


Support Natural Health Care

Herbs with alternative medicine herbal supplements and pillsRecently in politics, there have been some developments I find disturbing. Let me share with you what is occurring in the U.S. House of Representatives:

Congressman Waxman is attempting to slip an obscure anti-supplement measure into the Wall Street “Reform” Bill Passed by the House; Please Take Action to Prevent Same Thing Happening in the Senate.

Click here to stop this from passing in the Senate as well. If you like access to supplements, take action to keep it.

I would like to praise medical system and pharmaceutical industry for bringing us lifesaving drugs and treatments for accidents and acute illness, and all sorts of conditions. Sometimes we take for granted the advances that have been and are constantly being made.
I have seen thousands of people get better with both conventional medical treatment and holistic medical treatment. I believe great strides are being made in the area of natural health that are crucial to the safer control of chronic conditions. It is wonderful that we live in a world where we have access to a choice of whether to take a natural or more conventional approach. But there are, unfortunately, constant and ongoing efforts underway to severely limit your ability to choose various natural options. Fortunately, we still live in a democracy, where votes and voice count. If you want to have the option to favor natural treatments for your self or family, you have to take action against the various bills and laws afoot which would prevent you from doing so, or which would fund coverage only for conventional and not for natural treatment.
Since it is hard to spend your time in Washington reviewing al of the legislation proposed that may restrict your freedom, there is fortunately an organization called “The Alliance for Natural Health” which makes it easy for you to learn about these various pending bills which would limit access and freedom, and take action notifying your elected legislators how you would like them to take into account your needs when they vote. They are an evolution of a previous organization that did the same work, and has a good heart and purpose. Check them out, subscribe, and let your friends know to check them out, sign up, take action and support them.
I will soon be setting up a special email list you can subscribe to in order to hear about urgent matters needed to take action on to protect our full range of health care and treatment option rights.
There are other organizations that may inform on some of these same issues, but some are more inflammatory and suspect of being most supportive of their own purse poses.
I believe that there is room and need for both directions of care without one suppressing the other, and that indeed, the information from one feeds the other. Let’s continue to move toward an integrative care approach rather than putting up barriers to it.

To your health,

Dr. Alan M. Dattner
Holistic Dermatology
New York, New York

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As always, the content of this blog is for information and education purposes only, and should not be used to prevent, diagnose or treat illness; please see your physician for care.