I think I have something like twenty bottles of supplements accrued. I have already tested about five of these, but I intend to systematically try the others. The first thing to mention is that I have mild type 1 (flushing) rosacea and mild IBS-C, and these conditions are what I will be testing the supplements against. I also sometimes get mild to moderate acne, which I will also test the supplements against. I am also growing my hair.
None of the supplements I have tried so far, have improved my IBS in any way or form. But a few have benefited my acne, had other positive effects on my health and appearance, and I can only think of one thing I have tried which has helped my rosacea.
Here are the supplements that I have tried so far.
The zinc picolinate, and the spirulina seem to genuinely reduce what little acne I get. This makes sense as zinc deficiency can cause acne, and spirulina reduces lipid peroxidation in the body which is positively correlated with acne. Spirulina also contains zinc, along with a myriad of other minerals.
Gotu kola helps maintain the integrity and function of blood vessels, among other things, and appeared to help some spider veins I have on my legs. Unfortunately it did nothing visible to my rosacea.
The maca seemed to increase my libido for a while, and I think may generally make me feel more energetic.
The flaxseed oil, a common anti-inflammatory remedy for rosacea which might help the skin barrier, did absolutely nothing to me.
I just opened the probiotic bottle, but I don’t expect much from it.
In regards to the only thing, which is sort of like a supplement, that I tried that seemed to help my rosacea, I have literally no idea why it seemed to help. It might be a mere fluke, but drinking diluted apple cider vinegar every morning actually seemed to reduce my flushing. It wasn’t even an expensive variety. It really confused me.
Anyway, there are a substantial number of supplements I have yet to try, and I am going to break down by the order I am going to test them in.
1. Remedies (garlic and l-lysine)
These two supplements are often taken as remedies on rosacea forums, and I am not very confident that either of them will help. I think the anti-inflammatory qualities of the garlic means it could have some use, if it is going to help at all.
I remember that I used to eat garlic cloves for my acne, and that actually helped. Perhaps again because of the anti-inflammatory effects of the garlic, and likely also due to the anti-bacterial effects.
I think people try l-lysine for rosacea because someone marketing it invaded the forums at some point. That is my theory anyway.
2. Potent Anti-inflammatories (curcumin and astaxanthin)
I am actually quite excited to try these two. The bottle of astaxanthin reads “helps to relieve pain and inflammation, supports health, blood flow, and vessel integrity, the most powerful known natural anti-oxidant”.
I think one or both of those might help.
These may or may not help my IBS, we shall see.
4. Digestive Enzymes
The last time I tried these I ended up running to the bathroom for some reason. So I am going to work my way through the orange ones over the easter break.
5. Betaine HCL
Rosacea is associated with infection by H Pylori, which reduces stomach acid. You can see the logic in trying it. IBS and GERD also overlap a lot in patients, and my mum has GERD. GERD may actually be caused by low stomach acid according to Chris Kresser.
Low stomach acid can also cause digestive issues in itself.
So I am quite intrigued by the idea of trying this one.
6. Biotin (for growing my hair)
This one is kind of a bonus and will probably require long term supplementation when I finally crack the bottles open.
So there you have it. I am going to test, and report back on, all of these supplements. I will likely take the supplements for a month to see what happens.
I’ll keep you posted.