Three posts about health, part two: food and skin


Yesterday, I talked about food and anxiety. Today I’ll talk about food and my face.

Ugh. Seriously, I hate this, but many years ago I started getting red patches on my face. My skin would get rough and slightly puffy, and no amount of washing or moisturizing would make it better. The best I could hope for was to scrub my face so hard it all turned red. My wife had it, too. The best our doctors could manage was “You should wash your face,” which… yeah.

Eventually, things would get so bad that those red patches would start to peel. Yeah, I had face dandruff. Sorry, ladies, I’m taken.

Then came that nutritionist I mentioned in the post previous to this one. She suggested we cut out salicylates and gave us a list. (The amines I mentioned last time were a side conversation; this was the real subject of the meeting.) The biggest foods we had to cut? Tomatoes, peppers, vinegar, berries, peanuts, and so on. That right there covers 70% of all the meals I ate.

Tomatoes! Do you know how many delicious things I love that have tomatoes in them? And peppers were the food I used to add flavor to “healthy” meals when I was trying to cut calories. But still, vinegar has been the hardest to quit, because we eat so many salads; there’s only so many times you can eat green goddess or ranch in a row.

Lately, we’ve found a regimen that seems to be working: I wash with a fancy soap, then sesame oil, then a scrubbing washrag, then “wash” my face with honey and warm water. It sounds weird, but it works. Over the last few days, my wife has decided that what we need is salt water. It sounds thin to me, but I’ve learned not to doubt her.

Tomorrow, my horrible allergy.