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Welcome to Essentially Quinny - A podcast to help you learn more about your body and all the things that affect your health.

I have more than 12 years experience in the Natural Health field working with practitioners and doctors and speaking all over the world.

With more and more people wanting to take responsibility for their health and well being, I am bringing weekly episodes to you so you can make informed choices towards your good health.

If you would like to book an appointment with me, I
 am available for both online and in person consults.

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Jun 22, 2021

I have become known as a complementary dermatologist for supporting people with skin conditions in a natural way. Contrary to popular belief skin conditions often involve many different body systems and can be complex to treat. I.e. A topical cream may be required but it likely won't be enough for full healing. This is the first of our holistic skin healing series. 

Before we get stuck in, it is important to note that different conditions mean a different state of your immune system. Or, in simple terms, skin conditions can be caused by processes occurring (or not occurring) deep in the body. This can get quite complicated, so while I am speaking about how you can help yourself, keep in mind that you may require professional assistance to get to the root cause of the problem. 

When looking at health and disease there are certain steps the body has to go through. For example, if you are diagnosed with cancer this comes from a progression of stages which has occurred within the body, involving many body systems. There is also a hierarchy within the organ systems and skin would be near the top of that hierarchy, where it is generally the first symptom you will notice and is often the last symptom to disappear. This is not true for every case but it is quite common.

There are also conditions which are more inflammatory in nature and which can come from either external or internal sources. For example, if you are stung by a bee (external inflammatory source)  there will be redness, swelling and pain on the area of skin where you were stung. An internal inflammatory source would be something coming from inside of the body, like hormonal imbalance. 

When we speak about chronic conditions we are speaking about conditions which develop over a period of time. As I indicated, these cases develop with many other organ systems involved and thus take longer to address because there are more of the body systems which need balancing.

The reason why I am taking the time to stress the hierarchy of body systems involved in many skin conditions is because many people believe that when there is a chronic skin condition that the gut is to blame. This is not true. The gut may well be part of the problem but there are many more systems which will need to be balanced to bring the skin back into harmony and it’s probable that these other systems will need to be prioritised over the gut. 

Another way to look at skin conditions (instead of acute or chronic) is to think of it in terms of external triggers (e.g a bee sting or chemical exposure) vs internal triggers (body system malfunction).

Treating skin conditions is something that practitioners have been trying to master for a very long time and it takes a lot of study to begin understanding it. 

As a general rule of thumb. If something is red, burning, swollen and itching then you need to reduce the amount of histamines you are ingesting, are exposing your body to or which are being produced by your body. 

As an example, if you have a really hot shower and your skin gets red, the redness is a result of histamines being produced. This same effect can happen while exercising when you overheat. 

Some foods like strawberries create a histamine response in the body. These are things that are imperative to remove (especially in acute cases) if we are going to address conditions coming from histamine responses (red, itchy, burning, swelling).

Our body also detoxifies through the skin when the liver, lymphatics and kidneys are not able to detox effectively. So you can see how important it is to have good nutrition not only to reduce the amount of histamine foods but also to supply the organs of detoxification (liver, lymphatic, kidneys) with the nutrition they need to work effectively. 

A good example of this is when we have a diet with too much acid-forming foods and drinks (e.g. caffeine, fizzy drinks, sugar) and heavy foods containing too much cholesterol (e.g. fried foods, coconut oil etc).

We have spoken in previous episodes about how the extracellular space becomes very dense/thick when the body pH is too acid making it difficult to detox. (Listen to episode 20 for more information on body acidity and what causes it)

We need to consider the state of the liver, the PH of the body and consequently the minerals. If the minerals are not in balance you are going to be slow to regenerate your skin and have a good immune response. (I have recorded a whole series on mineral therapy. If you haven't listened already it is well worth your time in order to understand how minerals affect and regulate your body at the deepest level).

When we address skin conditions in this series we are going to look at primary triggers and secondary triggers. A primary trigger is something which initiates a condition, whereas a secondary trigger is something that continues to aggravate the original flare or symptoms. 

Each condition has different primary and secondary triggers. For example, in the case of scabies there are little midgets that burrow under the skin, creating a tunneling system. In this case we can see that the midgets/scabies are the primary trigger. The body's immune response should be to rid itself of the scabies. If the immune response is not adequate we need to look at pH (acidity) and minerals to see what is out of balance/why the immune response is not working. Therefore the secondary trigger is likely to be pH and/or mineral imbalance. In this case, while we would support the immune response, we would look at attacking the initial agent (the scabies) itself as our primary focus.

In another example let's say we have a burn. The primary trigger is heat but as part of the healing process we look at nutrition and protection because we need to regenerate our skin (which requires protein, minerals and adequate fluids) and avoid infection from external sources. In this case, we are focusing on avoiding the potential secondary triggers (lack of nutrition and exposure to pathogens) as our main focus of treatment.

What happens when you have a long term inflammatory condition?

These types of conditions cause a lot of suffering and we often see people coming into the clinic desperate for help. Examples are eczema, dermatitis, granuloma annularis, rosacea, acne, fungal conditions and nine different forms of psoriasis.

As these conditions involve many body systems, we are going to be addressing these in the coming episodes.

If you require support for your skin problem (or any other health problem) head to to book an appointment with Maria Arora.