Rosacea Food Allergies

Many patients with rosacea may have food allergies. A Rosacea allergic reaction may include a red nose, cheeks and ears are warning light when a food reaction starts. We need to identify reactive foods when this flushing or vascular dilation occurs. Often, it is the symptoms of food allergy that motivate people to start diet revision and an improvement in their rosacea condition is noted along with improvement in other symptoms such as gastrointestinal disturbances, migraine headache, sinusitis, and fatigue.

There are different types of flushing or vascular dilation caused by the intake of various foods and beverages. A very interesting note is that not everything affects everybody. Everyone is different! Listed below are 31 foods typically causing problems as well as some beverages.

Rosacea redness or vascular dilation is partially caused by high calorie carbohydrates (pastas, breads) and sugar spiking from all sweet foods. Think of things that give you a high burn rate, high energy, or foods that would most likely add fat to your body, and you would be identifying the worst culprits. The goal is to reduce food consumption which reduces the heat/calories burned which results in the body being noticeably colder during the winter and likewise providing less heat during the summer. As there is less heat by calories burned, there is less redness of the face or dilation. Therefore, three small meals with breakfast being the most important and grazing in between meals is better for limiting this kind of vascular dilation flushing; however, it is important to keep the daily calorie intake within one’s calorie budget to maintain your ideal weight.

Quite different are the foods that are blood vessel dilators such as vinegars, hot spices, and various other spicy seasonings, hot sauces, peppers (including black pepper) and meat marinades. Tomatoes, citrus fruits, and related juices, bananas, and red plums, raisins, figs, pasta, cheese, and chocolates are some of the worst offenders to many. Other very common known flushing foods are liver, yogurt, sour cream, vanilla, soy sauce, yeast extract, eggplant, avocados, spinach, broad-leaf beans and pods, including lima, navy or peas. Allergies to malt and yeast beverages, and fermented alcohols would fall into the allergy category.

Stimulants such as coffees, teas, soft drinks with caffeine, alcoholic beverages, and chocolates stimulate the system resulting in more facial redness or dilation.

Another category would be thermally hot foods and drinks as they even cause vascular dilation or flushing in non rosacea patients. Avoid all hot foods and drinks until they have cooled to body temperature or better yet cooled well below body temperature. The best way to drink a small amount of coffee, tea, or soft drink is refrigerator cold as this will not cause as much vascular dilation.

Food allergies are common in causing nasal membrane mucous resulting in vascular dilation causing reddening or facial flushing for many. This condition gets a similar response (but for very different reasons) as the common cold or influenza which often causes facial flushing due to a bacterial and virus infection.

Another category would be aspartame and NutraSweet in soft drinks, jello and other foods. Aspartame and NutraSweet as sugar replacements cause noticeable flushing in 30% of rosacea patients. Try a 60 day non-aspartame period to watch your facial blushing improve.

After all the foods that cause more vascular dilation or blushing, a bonus is that cherries, blackberries, and blueberries which are vascular constrictors actually assist in reducing redness. Also on the positive side is remembering the 900 to 1200 other foods in the supermarket that cause no problems to most who are on a rosacea diet. See the Alkaline Food List on Rosacea Diet Page.

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