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Eczema Bulletin, Issue #003 - Getting The Best Out Of Topical Steroids
October 01, 2013

Eczema Bulletin, Issue #003 - How To Get The Best Out Of Topical Steroids

Welcome to October's edition of the Eczema Bulletin e-zine, and thank you for subscribing.

This is the 3rd edition of Eczema Bulletin. It will bring you articles and news about eczema, and also any updates to If you would like to add any suggestions for articles or news, or even add your own then I would love to hear from you

You can contact me here

This months Eczema Bulletin includes

  • October's Featured Article – Getting the best out of topical steroids
  • My favourite eczema news article
  • Tip of the Month
  • 5 ways without dairy

Featured Article - How To Get The Best Out Of Topical Steroids

Topical steroids are an important part of managing eczema for most sufferers. Though some people decide they would rather not use them. This is sometimes because of the negative press they receive. If used properly they can help reduce a flare up and prevent your eczema getting worse.

The most important points to remember about using them are

  • use the correct strength required. You may need a stronger strength to start with. You can then reduce the strength as your eczema improves. Your doctor will monitor this and advise you
  • use the correct amount. It can be measured using the fingertip unit. The unit is measured from the top of the finger to the first fold. Different parts of the body need different amounts of treatment. You can read more here
  • only use for the directed time. Behind the counter creams are usually recommended to use for no more than 7 days. This usually gives your eczema enough time to improve, so you can just use an emollient to manage it, and to keep your skin moisturised
You can use emollients alongside topical steroids. Using both together will help with managing your eczema.

Eczema News Article

After looking for an interesting news story to share with you, I come across an inspiring one.

Shane Nicholl has taken on the massive challenge of running 1000km in 2013, to raise money for the National Eczema Society. He was inspired to do this as his girlfriend suffers from severe eczema, and he wants to raise awareness the condition.

So far, when this was written, he has run 748km. That is incredible.

To find out more about what Shane is doing, and to keep up with how he is doing you can visit his webpage

Good luck Shane, and well done.

Tip Of The Month - How To Stop Exercising Affecting Your Eczema

We all know that exercise is good for us, for many reasons. One thing that it can help with is stress. Stress can be a trigger of eczema.

Find out more about how stress can affect your eczema

If you regularly exercise you may find that your eczema can get itchier and more inflamed during exercise. One reason for this is the rise in temperature in the body. Heat irritates your skin. It can make it itchy. To help combat this wear comfortable loose clothing.

If you exercise indoors keep the room as ventilated as possible. When I run on my treadmill I have all my windows open. If you exercise outdoors it maybe worth thinking about going out early in the morning, or in the evening. This is when the weather is cooler.

Whenever or wherever you exercise always keep yourself hydrated. Drink plenty of water. It helps to keep you cool.

The other irritation and consequence of exercise, is sweating. Keeping cool can help reduce sweating, but not stop it.

Sweating does actually help to cool the body so I try to leave it to do it's job while I am exercising. When I have finished, I allow myself to cool down abit. I then splash my face with cold water. My face gets irritated by sweat the most. The cold water cleans my face, and helps me to cool down.

It is definitely better to incorporate exercise in your life because of it's many benefits, than to avoid it because of your eczema.

Do you have a tip you would like to share? Let me know :)

5 Ways without dairy

1. Try alternatives for different dairy products.
  • Cow's Milk – soy, almond, rice and oat
  • Cheese – soy, though beware of some vegetarian brands, as they can contain milk products
  • Ice cream, yoghurt and spreads – soy
Most big supermarkets have a good range of dairy free products. For even more choice try a good health food shop.

2. We all need calcium in our diet. Calcium is important for helping to keep bones and teeth strong and healthy. If you decide to or need to cut out dairy, there are other sources of calcium that you can eat and drink daily.
  • common fortified products include almond milk, soy milk, breakfast cereals and some fruit juices. Fortified basically means that extra calcium is added to the products
  • non dairy foods that are good sources include leafy greens, legumes, tofu, some fish and almonds

3. Milk is used in many different products, though it is not always listed as milk Look out for these ingredients on food labels. They are other words for milk.
  • casein
  • caseinate
  • curds
  • galactose
  • gree
  • lactalbumin
  • lactate
  • lactic acid
  • lactoglobulin
  • lactose
  • rennet
  • sodium caseinate
  • whey

4. Now for a couple of recipes. Firstly a main meal. A tasty Easy Carbonara.
This recipe serves 4
  • 250g spaghetti
  • A knob of dairy free spread
  • 1 tsp of olive oil
  • 1 shallot, finely chopped
  • 2 garlic cloves, crushed
  • 6 rashers streaky bacon, chopped
  • 2 eggs
  • 150ml rice or oat milk
  • 1-2 tbsp nutritional yeast flakes
  • Chopped parsley to garnish

1. Cook pasta according to the packet's instructions in a pan of boiling salted water with a little oil
2. Heat dairy free spread and oil in a small frying pan and cook the shallot, garlic and bacon for 5-7 minutes until golden
3. Beat together the eggs and milk with plenty of black pepper and yeast flakes
4. Drain the spaghetti and add to the frying pan off of the heat. Add the egg mixture and toss together until the pasta is evenly coated
5. Divide the mixture between bowls, garnish with parsley and season to taste

This recipe is from

5. Now for dessert. Some lovely dairy free Banana Brownies
This makes one 9” x 13” pan of brownies

  • 2 cups all purpose flour
  • 2 cups white granulated sugar
  • ¾ cups unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup mashed ripe bananas
  • ¼ cup unsweetened soy or almond milk
  • ¼ canola oil
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 cup dark dairy free chocolate chips

1. Preheat the oven to 350F. Lightly oil a 9” x 13” baking dish and set aside
2. In a large mixing bowl, combine the flour, sugar, cocoa powder, baking powder and salt until well mixed
3. In another small mixing bowl, combine the mashed bananas, soy milk, canola oil and vanilla extract. Add the wet ingredients to the dry, mixing until just combined. Fold in the chocolate chips
4. Pour the mixture into the prepared pan and bake for 25-35 minutes. Allow brownies to cool, then cut into squares and enjoy

This simple recipe is from

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The November edition of Eczema Bulletin will include

  • November's Featured Article – Don't let the winter get the better of your skin
  • My favourite news item of the month
  • Tip of the Month
  • 5 ways to.....reduce those pesky dustmites

Hope you enjoyed October's Eczema Bulletin, and thanks for reading


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