GAPS Diet and Inflammation ~ Integrative Dermatology

GAPS Diet and Inflammation

Hi for some people the wrong diet can cause a lot more than just inflammation of the skin or of the other organs. For those people various substances that come from the food and get out into the system can cause neurological and psychological problems as well. It’s known that one of the end molecules from gluten that is, the component of bread that gives the thickness and stickiness can cause a variety of problems.

And in some people it can even cause psychological and behavioral issues. Besides gluten sensitivity, there are some individuals who are sensitive to a whole variety of different grains. This was pointed out in a few different books by Dr. Allaine Gutshrack who was the one who came with what is called the specific carbohydrate diet. She found that there were some individuals who had to remove all grains from their diet. Not just gluten containing grains in order to get better, in order to have their psychological issues, their ADHD, even their schizophrenia or their autism improved.

So since that time, and she has passed on a few years ago, there have been a number of people who have taken up her specific carbohydrate diet and made various modifications and given it different names, including the GAPS Diet. The Paleo Diet is similar in some ways. And whatever name you call it, removal of grains is important for a certain sub-group of people. Those people have symptoms that have been going on for a long time that may also include inflammatory symptoms as well as the in emotional or neurological condition. And they do very well once an elimination occurs. In some cases they need other things eliminated further such as the GAPS diet. A gluten-free elimination diet is good for some people and other people need to take out other grains as well.


4 Signs of Sugar Overload ~ Holistic Dermatology

4 Signs of Sugar Overload

Let’s talk about the sign of too much sugar in your diet. One of them is reaction to the sugar, so you get a boost when you eat the sugar and then you crash shortly afterwards which we call reactive hypoglycemia. Another one is of course pre-diabetes. This is where various changes occurring in your body and reflected in blood test showing elevated blood sugar and also elevated sugars, bound to different molecules in the body.

Now how can you look at that? There is a test called hemoglobin A1C or glycocilated hemoglobin. Now those big words mean that the hemoglobin which is a protein has sugar that stuck on to it, and the blood cells stick around for about 3 months so this gives you a picture of what’s going on in your body over a window of time of 3 months. If there’s too much sugar over that 3 months you’re going to have more of that glycocylated hemoglobin or hemoglobin A1C.

That’s the blood test your doctor can do if they suspect that you may have sugar overload.  Now, of course let’s go on other signs: cavities in the teeth can be a sign of sugar overload. Also, various kinds of reaction, after you eat sugar–craving of sugar can be a sign of repeated cycle of too much sugar, with the crash requiring more and more afterwards. And finally if you get so fat that your arm can’t reach out and touch the refrigerator door to get more that’s a sign of too much sugar.


Best New Sugar Substitutes ~ Integrative Medicine

Best New Sugar Substitutes

I’ve spoken about sugar in the past and so you probably wondering what kind of sugar substitutes I would recommend. Well for people who don’t have diabetes or problems in that direction but want to cut back on their sugar and use something else as a sugar substitute or sweetener. I have another suggestion, and that is to consider using ribose. Ribose is a sugar that’s part of the molecule of information that makes up our genetic material. Ribonucleic acid and the sugar in ribonucleic acid is ribose.

Ribose seems to be a very useful product for people who have issues with the heart. It’s one of the different ingredients that can be very helpful for the heart, so it’s one thing to use on occasion. On the other side of the argument for ribose, is it’s a very sticky sugar. So for people who have problems with too much sugar and too much stickiness in their bodies and their cells and their molecules too much glycation, I would not use huge amount of ribose. But keep it in mind it’s something that supportive of the heart and also sweetens your food.

I also like stevia, monkfruit, xylitol, and in small amounts, maple syrup, or honey.


3 Reasons Your Skin Wants Organic Food ~ Natural Dermatology

Organic Food: 3 Natural Dermatology Reasons Your Skin Wants It

Organic food is really important, and I’d like to say a bit how it fits into health and fits into treatment of skin disorders with holistic dermatology. Now if someone has been eating a lot of foods sprayed with pesticides, it’s really important to let the body get a break from that. And one way of course is to eat organic foods.

Now when we say organic foods, really that’s a technical definition in this country. The term organic allows certain kinds of pesticides to be used. And when I think of organic foods, I think of foods that are grown without pesticides or toxins at all. And that’s my favorite. So there are probably some places that have wonderful foods that are grown without pesticides that are not registered as organic, because the registration process is expensive. But they could be even better for you than the ones that have the organic label but are grown with the allowable level of pesticides. So that’s one of the questions you need to ask when you are at the farmer’s market or your grocery store.

The next thing is that there are certain foods that are heavily sprayed and apparently soak up more chemicals than other foods, and those are the ones to definitely choose organic. Leafy vegetables, celery, strawberries and just a few of those. Find places to shop for your fruits and vegetables where you can learn what sorts of chemicals are being used. Because if you can wash the off with soap and water or a food detergent (found in your local health food store), that may be acceptable.

So using organic food can be beneficial because it avoids toxins. And some of those toxins inhibit the process the body does to suppress allergic reactions. So avoiding toxic foods and eating organic foods can help reduce allergic reactions. But personally I sometimes choose to use the regular, non-organic foods if they are not known to be heavy in pesticides. And I also choose locally grown foods that come from farmers who don’t use pesticides who are not necessarily organic, as mentioned above.

Of course organic can also mean using foods that have been given natural fertilizers, which again is another important thing to make the foods more healthy. And finally, interestingly enough, foods that are grown organically have more stresses on them, so that the plant has to make its own pesticides. And some of those pesticides are called cell versantsAnd those products that the plants make have anti-cancer properties. So, there maybe additional benefits in those “stressed” organic plants or pesticide-free plant that cause them to make products within them that will protect you much further.

So another vote for organic food from the holistic dermatology perspective. To your health!


3 Skin Secrets of the Mediterranean Diet ~ Natural Skincare

3 Skin Secrets of the Mediterranean Diet

There are many different perspectives on diet that can enhance your health, and help your skin as well. One of them is the Mediterranean diet. Now let’s talk a little bit about what makes the Mediterranean diet so useful. Mediterranean diet is basically conceptually what people would eat if they were living around the Mediterranean base, in Greece, in Italy, in Spain, in Northern Africa, Morocco, those areas. So what does that include? First of all when you think about Mediterranean diet, you think about olive oil.

Now olive oil is a terrific oil to be part of your food. It’s a mono-saturated oil. It has a nice flavor. Some of that green color is anti-microbial property of the olive leaf and the olive. So it has some benefits in that direction and also it’s avoiding so many nasty things that we have in our current oils which are really not healthy. It’s avoiding the toxins. Because when you think about the Mediterranean diet, you are not thinking about somebody spraying the olive tree. You think about a more organic and natural olive.

The second thing is it avoids high temperature heating oils, and oils that are saturated fats or oils that are very highly unsaturated that would become rancid. So all those things are being avoided when you are thinking of that. It’s avoiding things that are really; who knows what they are, like Canola. There is no such thing as a canola bean! Canola is the name of a conglomerate type of product.

So getting to olive oil is the real basic step that makes you healthier. So Mediterranean diet involves fresh foods and vegetables, involves fresh fish and meat. And a diet that has limited amounts of carbohydrates in it. And that could be tremendously important, both for the good things it’s bringing with all those products and also for the terrible things it’s avoiding.


Heartbreak of Psoriasis: Natural Healing ~ Integrative Dermatology

Heartbreak of Psoriasis: Natural Healing

Let’s talk a little bit about a condition known as Psoriasis or sometimes the Heartbreak of Psoriasis. Psoriasis involves thick red patches of skin often in the pressure areas or elsewhere throughout the body on the skin. It can be very mild and barely visible or it can be extremely widespread and for some people very disturbing.

Now, eczema is a much milder condition. But Psoriasis tends to be thick it can be itchy or painful and it is caused by the type of inflammation that enlarges the blood vessels in the skin. This causes the skin cells to reproduce and turn over much faster, that is like 4 to 6 days instead of 28 days before they get to the top.

And that over production of the skin cells causes the thickening and the scaling that occurs. So we need to cut down the inflammation that causes that. That is a lymphocytic delayed hypersensitivity celli or immune response causing it. And we know that partly by the new drugs that poison that response and we know that if we can take away what is setting off that inflammation, we can also calm it down. And we can do that through diet as well as through the modern drugs. If you need help with the heartbreak of psoriasis, contact my office for an appointment.


Saving Money and Saving your Skin in Winter

6a00e55255b4628834017eea952afa970d-200wiIn my holistic dermatology practice, I often help patients whose skin suffers in winter.  It is possible to both help your skin and save money doing it.  I emphasize this because it requires doing something very simple and at the same time very challenging: changing your habits.

Even more, it requires changing the beliefs behind those habits, so I will try to give some additional information beyond what was in my last blog, to help you make these changes.

If you have ever done dishes or wet work, with your hands in and out of water repeatedly for a while, you know how your skin becomes dry and chapped.  This is because you are washing away the oils and the salts which hold water in our skin.  In the winter when the air is dry (low humidity), bathing washes out the oils from the skin. The belief that we need a shower, especially a long, hot one, to be clean, to wake up, or to feel alive in the morning, needs a second look if your skin becomes dry and scaly in winter.  A washcloth under the arm and in the folds does a very nice job between showers, and does not dry out parts of your skin which do not need washing.
The result is that you:
  • save hot water,
  • save on lotion
  • save oils in your skin,
  • save money on heat,
  • save fresh water,
  • safe electricity

Once you have the routine down, you will save time as well.Of course there will be times and situations where you need a shower or bath. Bathing less often, faster, and soaping less areas which do not need heavy cleansing, will keep the moisture in your skin and save you money as well. I repeat the essence of my last message because I have found,
in my 30 yeasr of practice, that people often have to hear it more than once in order to reduce their bathing. Did you?

To your health,

-Dr. Alan M. Dattner
Holistic Dermatology & Integrative Medicine

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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.