Critical Health News

Psychodermatology

Makeup

One of the most under-appreciated aspects of skincare involves its relationship to the mind, emotions and the skin. Technically called “psychodermatology” this aspect of cutaneous health is being recognized more and more as a fundamental, if under-appreciated cause of dermatological diseases. Psychodermatology recognizes that the skin, the brain and the body’s defense (immune) system that deals with survival threats, real or imagined, are in reality three parts of one system. That means that if you are dealing with acne, psoriasis, eczema, vitiligo or any other skin heath issue, you should consider looking at it as the result of a real or imagined survival threat. By far the most important sources of these threats are not actual. They are mental and emotional. In other words, in the majority of threatening situations, our survival is not actually at risk, we simply “believe” it is! However, while these threats may only exist as thoughts and feelings they can and do manifest themselves as real physical effects such as itching and rashes (eczema), inflammation (psoriasis), oiliness (acne) and changes in pigmentation (melasma).

If you go to a doctor, his management options according to the medical journal “American Family Physician” include “…psychotropic medication, stress management courses and referral to a psychiatrist.” No surprise there. As always, the medical model focuses on symptoms and not the causes.

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NAG: One of the Good Sugars

NAG Chemicals

Sugar is pretty interesting stuff. It’s also misunderstood. For one thing, we all love how “sugar” tastes, but we don’t necessarily love its effects. That presents a problem. Despite it’s well-documented health hazards, just because we love the stuff, no matter how much we try to abstain, when it comes right down to it, turning down that apple pie a la mode or peach gelato, as much as we’d like to, can be pretty difficult and at times impossible. That’s because our brainy cells which are fueled by the sweet and sticky substance, are hardwired to love sugar! On the other hand, the downside of sugar ingestion includes weight gain, diabetes, eye disease, hypertension, jittery-ness and anxiety. Well, those we would rather do without. Thus the love-hate relationship we have with what is generally referred to as “sugar”.

However, unbeknownst to many, there’s a whole other side to the subject of sugar! The chemical that most of us know as “sugar” and the substance that is so problematic is actually a special type of sugar called “glucose”. As it turns out, glucose is just one version of 8 different sugars that are collectively, if not entirely accurately, referred to as “essential”. These 7 other essential sugars aren’t very tasty or sweet but, importantly, they provide lots of health benefits.

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Multi Vitamins: A Waste of Money?

Rx

Lol, despite the provocative and somewhat incendiary headlines plastered all over the media, even a cursory reading of the actual article originally published the Annals of Internal Medicine (AIM), reveals scant evidence that taking a multi-vitamin is indeed a waste of money.

The breathless headlines and catchy captions refer to the conclusions of an AIM editorial that was based on the result of two studies. The first one looked at 1700 North American adults aged 50 and older who had a myocardial infarction at least 6 weeks prior to the beginning of the study and who randomly received EITHER a high dose 28 component vitamin mineral formulation or a placebo. The second study was done on 6000 male physicians, aged 65 or older, who randomly received a daily multi-vitamin or a placebo. In the first study, after 4.5 years follow-up, mortality was no different between the vitamin group and the placebo group. In the second, after 6.5 years follow-up, vitamin-popping medical men showed no significant improvements in global cognition or verbal memory over their placebo taking colleagues.

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