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There are a great many skin complaints that have their roots in this kind of condition, and many authorities have in the past shown how closely related these two conditions may be. It is certainly true to say that no skin abnormality should be treated by other measures until the trouble in the alimentary tract has been cleared up. Dr. Kellogg gives the following conditions of the skin which he maintains are directly due to alimentary toxemia:
”Formation of wrinkles; thin, inelastic, starchy skin; pigmentation of the skin – yellow, brown, slate-black, blue; muddy complexion; offensive secretion from skin of flexures; thickening of the skin of the back of the upper arm; irritability of j the skin; sweating of the palms of the hands and the soles of j the feet; eruption of the skin; sores and boils; pemphigus; pruritus; herpes; eczema; dermatitis; lupus erythematosus; acne rosacea; cold, clammy extremities; dark circles under the eyes; seborrhea; psoriasis; pityriasis; alopecia; lichen; planus; jaundice. An infinitesimal amount of poison may suffice to cause skin eruption.”
This list covers practically all the known forms of disease that may affect the skin, so that what Dr. Kellogg was saying, in effect, was that disordered function of the bowel was at the bottom of them all. From much practical experience one must say that this is substantially true, but it does not follow that all the treatment that is used can be approved. There is no doubt that the ordinary methods of purging the bowels by certain drugs is very harmful and will not help the condition of the skin. In recent years it has been discovered that certain vitamins are synthesized in the bowel, and taking powerful medicines will upset this extremely important function. The same applies – in a lesser degree, of course – to the practice of colonic irrigation. Such a method, if it is overdone, can disturb the intestinal flora, and it may be a long time before the natural condition can be restored.
The condition should be rectified by the use of suitable food and the elimination of enervating habits. In the meantime the usual alarmist attitude about frequent movement of the bowels should be ignored. If a proper diet is adopted there is no need to panic even if the bowels do not act for a few days, and the use of a small enema to keep the lower bowel free from accumulations is all that is necessary.

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