cancer Newsletter


July 12 2011 Cancer Newsletter

As I said in my latest article, I am having some skin sensitivity problems myself, and on my journey to find a solution, I’ve found some information that I’d like to share with you.

After years of IV antibiotic therapy, penicillin, dyes from tests, and exposure to the elements – well, at my age, my skin is starting to talk back to me a little bit!

After chemotherapy and/or radiation, your skin has been affected on all levels. Add to that, exposure to the sun, the cold winters, the hot summers, and pollutants inside and out. Remember that the skin is a living organ that draws nutrients from our bloodstream just like our vital organs do. That’s why when something’s going on with our skin, it might be related to a nutrient deficiency.

The best thing we can do is to eat a healthy, well-balanced diet and drink plenty of water. However, since that is not always easy, just do the best that you can to improve your diet.

Remember: antioxidant = tissue repair

5 Common Skin Conditions and nutrient-rich foods that help

Dryness - If your skin is dry, drink plenty of water throughout the day. Skin has its own natural oils and will stay hydrated if it is supported by good fats that come from fish- (tuna, salmon, sardines, and trout); nuts (almonds and walnuts); avocado; olives and olive oil; and sunflower seeds. You may also benefit from an Omega-3 fatty acid supplement.

Easy bruising – You may have a Vitamin C deficiency. This will cause easy bruising, or sometimes make your gums bleed. Just add more citrus fruits to your diet, along with bell peppers (all colors), broccoli, cauliflower, spinach or any other dark green vegetables.

If you decide to supplement Vitamin C, make sure it comes with bioflavonoids. Bioflavonoids are is chemical compounds related to Vitamin C and found in fruits and vegetables. This kind of diet will strengthen capillaries and underneath tissues so that you can prevent bruising. However, after you get a bruise, the body normally just heals itself, and that takes time. You might try topical creams: Vitamin C – 10% lotion; or Vitamin K - 1% cream.

Flaking and psoriasis – This is a more serious form of dry skin, and can signal a deficiency in Vitamin A. Vitamin A is fat-soluble and is key in maintaining and repairing skin tissue. When you don’t have enough your skin will lose moisture easily and the structure will begin to break down. Some studies have shown that a person can reduce the risk of psoriasis by consuming more sweet potatoes, carrots, dark leafy greens, butternut squash, lettuce, dried apricots, and cantaloupe. It is best to get Vitamin A from a natural source. (Excessive intake of Vitamin A by supplementation is risky).

Dermatitis – You need Vitamin B, especially biotin, when you have this condition. Itching and scratching are the symptoms. Biotin helps form the basis for skin, hair and nail cells, so a mild deficiency can cause
those symptoms. Most people get enough B vitamins, but some medications block it (birth control, diabetic drugs, or antibiotics). Eggs, bananas, rice and oatmeal will help with a Vitamin B deficiency.

Acne and eczema – If it seems like you are losing the battle with these two, you may be short on zinc. Zinc is a trace mineral, and if low, can cause tissue inflammation and slow down tissue repair. Zinc helps balance oil production. If you have oily skin, zinc will help. Diabetes affects zinc metabolism, so increase your zinc intake. These medications also rob your body of zinc: antacids, antibiotics, birth control, hormone replacement drugs, and acid-blocking drugs. If you take any of these you need to supplement with zinc. Also, try more oysters, wheat germ, low-fat roast beef, sesame seeds, veal liver, dark chocolate, lamb and peanuts.

So…I don’t know about you, but I’m heading out to the farmer’s market to load up on some good stuff!

I’d rather buy fruits and vegetables than pay for doctor’s visits and medications – any day! How about you?

Let’s see: Breakfast – oatmeal and a banana. Lunch – Low-fat roast beef (or tuna) on whole wheat, with a dark leafy green chef salad (with nuts).
Dinner – Grilled salmon on a bed of Thai jasmine rice, steamed broccoli, and
* Blueberry and Cantaloupe salad (*see link to my recipe at the bottom of the page!)

Soft, calm, and beautiful skin here we come!

Have a blessed and healthy week!

Here's the latest article from the Cancer site at

Health and Beauty for Post Treatment Skin
Radiation and chemotherapy alter the body at the cellular level, and eventually cause noticable changes to the outer layer of the skin. This article reviews a web site dedicated to cancer survivors, and focuses on skin care products and make-up that won't irritate sensitive skin.

Please visit for even more great content about Cancer.

To participate in free, fun online discussions, this site has a community forum all about Cancer located here -

I hope to hear from you sometime soon, either in the forum or in response to this email message. I thrive on your feedback!

Have fun passing this message along to family and friends, because we all love free knowledge!

Rann Patterson, Cancer Editor

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