Monthly Newsletter Complementary Medicine June 2003
Summer brings sun! Sun brings skin damage!
Your sunscreen may be giving you a false sense of security! It's not the sun exposure that’s the problem with skin conditions--it’s the damage to the folic acid in the skin caused by the sun.
Folic acid is important in the DNA for repair to healthy skin cells. It is destroyed rapidly by heat, cold and exposure to light including sunlight. Look for folic acid in foods like spinach, dark green vegetables, brewers yeast, lima beans, cantaloupe, watermelon, wheat germ and liver. If you spend large amounts of time in the sun, you should supplement with 1,000 mcg of folic acid daily.
Other nutrients important for health skin:
Essential fatty acids (fish oil)
Vitamin E (mixed tocopherol--avoid dl-alpha tocopherol)
Vitamin C and
Lipoic acid: The most potent anti-oxidant/anti-inflammatory in the body. It enhances the action of other antioxidants like Vit. E, glutathione and Vit.C. Since it is both fat and water soluble it can penetrate the cell membrane to fight free radicals in the mitochondria as well as de-activate debris in the outer plasma. Animal and human studies have shown that oral applications of lipoic acid have a profound effect on skin improvement. It has also been used to treat diabetic neuropathy or liver and pancreas damage from alcohol.
Inevitably, the sunburn happens! Ointments containing Vitamins A and E work to cleanse, fortify, heal and protect damaged skin. These vitamins require fatty acids to be absorbed. Flaxseed oil used topically or orally will help with absorption and aids in healing sunburn, acne, deep cuts, scrapes and dandruff.
Drs Glenn and Julie Smith