Lisa Borg Dip DCNH, Nutritional Therapist – Lisa is a qualified Nutritional Therapist. She has been practicing nutrition for 8 years across a broad spectrum of health conditions. She has a special interest in Rosacea, and her research, together with hands-on experience, led to the writing of her thesis entitled “The Nutritional Management of Rosacea”.)
This week I want to continue on the subject of a healthy diet for Rosacea.
Every single cell in your body (trillions of them) has a surrounding membrane, keeping all cell contents inside. That membrane is composed mainly of cholesterol, and your liver is able to produce cholesterol when necessary, if there is an insufficient supply from the diet, because without sufficient cholesterol, cellular health would be severely compromised. In a healthy cell, the cholesterol membrane is a flexible, secure and chemically stable ‘jacket’ which has, implanted on it’s surface, a number of channels that allow nutrients in while other channels serve to expel toxins and waste.
Cholesterol is also used within the body as one would use a sticky plaster on the outside; a means to protect and heal any damage.
If you have a diagnoses of high cholesterol, don’t panic! It is a sign of increased production of cholesterol in the liver, which may be due to a number of reasons but is almost never due to excessive dietary intake.
Fats are an essential component of any healthy diet, especially since they assist in the absorption of a certain group of crucial vitamins called ‘fat-soluble’; these are vitamins A, D, E and K, and fats are the building blocks of hormones
Any diet deficient in fats will eventually lead to a deficiency in these vitamins and a whole host of health problems. A key to assessing an insufficient fat intake is hunger; if you are frequently hungry throughout the day between meals, this is a strong indicator that your meals are not providing sufficient fat. Fats are satisfying and take longer to digest, therefore maintaining a feeling of fullness until your next meal. Carbohydrates and proteins provide roughly four calories per gram, whereas fats provide nine calories per gram, which is why we need less volume of fats in a meal.
There are indeed some fats that are harmful to the human body, and in the field of Nutrition we call these fats that kill, while healthy fats are known as fats that heal. Interestingly, many healthy fats that are processed by heating cause the same problems that they protect us from in their natural state. For example, some oils protect us from mutations, but when they are processed into an unhealthy fat they actually cause mutations; some fats boost your energy while others made you feel sluggish and tired.
The deciding factor in how to ensure sufficient fat intake is to provide some healthy fats with every meal, while avoiding those fats that are detrimental to health. Unhealthy fats disrupt cellular function and block the uptake of healthy fats. These include: Any vegetable or seed oil in plastic containers, and/or clear bottles (exposure to light and heat changes the structure of fats) This is especially true for Corn Oil, Safflower Oil and Sunflower Oil.
Margarine / Vegetable spreads like soya
Trans Fats (common in processed foods)
Hydrogenated or Partially Hydrogenated Vegetable Oils
A note on sugars: Sugar is not a fat but is converted to fat in the body, and is the main explanation for overweight, low energy, poor gut health, including the proliferation of yeast and fungi, and it interferes with immune function. Sugar should be avoided in the diet of anyone attempting to maximise their health and overcome any non-optimum condition, including Rosacea.
Include the following list of healthy fats in your diet, while avoiding the above list of unhealthy ones:
- Organic Olives & Unrefined Olive Oil
- Organic Coconuts and their Oil
- Organic Olives & Unrefined Olive Oil
- Organic Butter made from raw organic grass-fed cows
- Organic Raw Nuts and Seeds
- Organic Free Range Eggs
- Organic Avocados
- Organic Grass-fed Meats
- Organic Unrefined, Unheated Nut and Seed Oils (do not heat, use only as dressings)
- Oily fish such as Wild Alaskan
The recommendation for ‘Organic’ in the above list is to ensure quality and to minimize toxin exposure.
For optimum health one should also pay attention to the ratio of Omega 3 and Omega 6 fats. They are called ‘Essential’ because they cannot be made in the body and must come from the diet. I recommend intake of equal amounts of Omega 3 and Omega 6 fats to prevent deficiency of either one. Omega 6 fats are present in grains and vegetables as well as nuts and seeds, although the latter also provide some Omega 3 fats. If you do not eat Oily fish three times weekly (at least) you may develop a deficiency of Omega 3 which are highly involved in the anti-inflammatory mechanisms within the body, another important factor in controlling your Rosacea!
Always store oils in dark glass bottles and preferably in the fridge to prevent oxidation.
This Week’s Quote:
“As for butter versus margarine, I trust cows more than chemists.” ~Joan Gussow
If you would like to book a Rosacea Nutritional Consultation or to book a free Rosacea Treatment Consultation, please ring 0207 523 5158 or e-mail [email protected] We are open Monday – Saturday, 10 am – 6 pm