Sunday, June 27, 2010

Seth's Yogurt Mask

Regular readers might remember my post: What This Hideous Rash on my Face Taught Me. I talked about a rash--what I had thought was seborrheic dermatitis.

Taking steroids to treat that rash, I inadvertently created another problem: perioral dermatitis--an angry, hard-to-treat red rash seething around my nose and mouth. It lasted three months, and it seriously undermined my sense of self-confidence.

When faced with a health challenge, I read every bit of information available on-line and in print. (Hypochondria? Or supreme attentiveness?)

What I learned about POD, as it's so referred to by the woman who suffer it (women suffer POD in much greater numbers than men), is that it's often a result of skin sensitivities.

On my favored message board, Earth Clinic, many people suggested a simple cure for POD: Don't do anything. Don't use any soap. Don't use anything. Maybe just a little apple cider vinegar. Or yogurt.

Now I had been using Mychelle Dermacueticals for years with great success. I trusted these plant-based products. (Still do). And yet, I spent about $25-$30 a month on my skin and I was still having major problems. So I stopped. I stopped washing my face. I stopped everything.

  I haven't touched one skin-care product since. Except yogurt.

I now spend maybe $2 a week on skin care. I slather yogurt on my face everyday; sometimes, I slather it on my body. I believe anyone could benefit form this mask--it's gentle, yet effective. Milk has been used for thousands of years as a skin softener and nourishing agent; and the good bacteria in yogurt fight the bad bacteria that cause blemishes. Simple, right?

Try it. I think you'll love it!

Seth's Yogurt Mask
I add probiotics to the yogurt to amplify the effects of the good bacteria. Full-fat yogurt is best. And Greek yogurt is a must--other, less thick yogurts, sort of just slide off your face. This recipe is good for a week's supply.

1 7 oz. container Fage Total Yogurt (full fat Greek Yogurt is best)
1-2 probiotic capsules, such as Primal Defense Ultra

Place yogurt in a small bowl or Pyrex container. Empty probiotic capsules into yogurt and stir to combine. Refrigerate. Lasts about two weeks.

Thursday, June 10, 2010

Tu Fu's "By the Winding River"

This is from Kenneth Rexroth's wonderful book of translations, One Hundred Poems From the Chinese. I keep the book around like a talisman, and take it out when I feel lonesome. Something about Tu Fu, the way he celebrates sadness--something about his joyful melancholy speaks to me, especially now, as I struggle to maintain my health in the face of illness.

I've discovered that my illness speaks, if I let it. What does my illness say? It issues a challenge: to live, even as I feel death; to try, as hard as I can, to feel joy--a joy that maintains sadness, even as it yearns to for happiness.

By the Winding River

Every day on the way home from
My office I pawn another
Of my Spring clothes. Every day
I come home from the river bank
Drunk. Everywhere I go, I owe
Money for wine. History
Records few men who have lived to be
Seventy. I watch the yellow
Butterflies drink deep of the
Flowers, and the dragonflies
Dipping the surface of the
Water again and again.
I cry out to the Spring wind,
And the light and the passing hours.
We enjoy life such a little
While, why should men cross each other?

~Tu Fu