The Cause of Internet
and TV Addiction?
"These signs include
dry skin (often noticed as a 'goosebump' rash on the
upper arms and/or upper thighs),
problems with attention
and so on."
Keratosis Pilaris: Definition
"Keratosis pilaris is a common
skin condition that looks like small goose bumps, which are actually
dead skin cells that build up around the hair follicle."
Keratosis Pilaris: Description
"Keratosis pilaris is a disorder that occurs
around the hair follicles of the upper arms, thighs, and sometimes the
It presents as small, benign bumps or papules that are
actually waxy build-ups of keratin. Normally skin sloughs off. However, around
the hair follicle where the papules form, the keratinized skin cells slough
off at a slower rate, clogging the follicles.
This is generally thought to be genetic
disorder, although the symptoms of keratosis pilaris are often seen with ichthyosis
and allergic dermatitis. It can also be observed in people of all ages
who have either inherited it or have a vitamin A deficiency or have dry
Keratosis pilaris is a self-limiting disorder that disappears
as the person ages.
It can become more severe when conditions are dry
such as during the winter months or in dry climates."
Keratosis Pilaris: Causes and
"The specific causes of this
disorder are unknown. Since this disorder runs in families, it is thought to
be hereditary. Keratosis pilaris is not a serious disorder and is not
The symptoms of keratosis pilaris
are based on the development of small white papules the size of a grain of
sand on the upper arms, thighs, and occasionally the buttocks and face. The
papules occur around a hair follicle and are firm and white. They feel a
little like coarse sandpaper, but they are not painful and there usually is
no itching associated with them. They are easily removed and the
material inside the papule usually contains a small, coiled hair."
"To treat keratosis pilaris patients can try
several strategies to lessen the bumps.
First, the patient can supplement the natural removal
of dry skin and papules by using a loofah or another type of scrub showering
A variety of different over-the-counter (OTC) lotions,
ointments, and creams can also be applied after showering while the skin is
still moist and then several times a day to keep the area moist.
Medicated lotions with urea, 15% alphahydroxy acids, or
Retin A can also be prescribed by the dermatologist and applied one to two
Systemic (oral) medications are not prescribed for
However if papules are opened and become infected, antibiotics
may be necessary to treat the infection."
"I did a little research on
vitamin a deficiency and it seems to be, if not a cause, then a trigger to a
lot of skin problems. However, taking vitamin A does not necessarily
eliminate the deficiency. I know this because I was taking a vitamin A/B
combo and nothing was happening. Then after doing some reading about
eczema…omega 3 fatty acids (found in cod liver oil supplements [caution:
cod liver oil in the
quantity necessary to get three grams per day of omega-3's would contain
dangerous levels of vitamin A]) help the body absorb vitamin A.
This has worked for me and has offset a lot of the uncomfortable dry skin
associated with not only my eczema, but also on my arms and legs (KP)."
"If a child does not get enough EFAs, the myelin
sheath protecting the axons of billions of neurons may not be adequate.
Recent research is showing that boys with ADD have EFA deficiencies
(Stevens, L. et al, 1995:000-000) and similar deficiencies are possibly
responsible for the symptoms of dyslexia. (Stordy & Nicholl,
"When researchers monitor eating habits across
countries, they find that as fish consumption goes up, depression rates go
down. In fact, there is a sixty-fold difference in depression rates across
countries from the highest (
"Over the last decade, neuroscientists have been
examining the consequences of omega-3 deficiencies in the central
nervous system. Alterations in serotonin and dopamine levels, as well
as the functioning of these two important neurotransmitters is evident
in an omega-3 deficiency. The changes observed in omega-3 deficiency in
animals is strikingly similar to that found in autopsy studies of human
"In addition to changing serotonin and dopamine levels
and functioning, omega-3 deficiencies are known to compromise the
blood-brain barrier, which normally protects the brain from unwanted
matter gaining access.21"
"Omega-3 deficiency can also decrease normal blood
flow to the brain,22,23 an interesting finding given the studies which
show that patients with depression have compromised blood flow to a number of
"Finally, omega-3 deficiency also causes a 35 percent
reduction in brain phosphatidylserine (PS) levels.26 This is also of
relevance when considering that PS has documented antidepressant activity
"DHA [an omega-3 fatty acid] is found in high
levels in the cells of the central nervous system (neurons); here it
acts as a form of scaffolding for structural support.29 When omega-3
intake is inadequate, the nerve cell becomes stiff as cholesterol and omega-6
fatty acids are substituted for omega-3.30 When a nerve cell becomes rigid,
proper neurotransmission from cell to cell and within cells will be
While DHA provides structure
and helps to ensure normal neurotransmission, EPA [an
omega-3 fatty acid] may be more important in the signaling within
nerve cells.32 Normalizing communications within nerve cells has been
suggested to be an important factor in alleviating depressive
"In addition, EPA can lower the levels of
two important immune chemicals,
tumour necrosis factor
alpha (TNFa) and
interleukin 1 beta (IL-1ß),
as well as prostaglandin
All three of these chemicals are elevated in depression.35-38
In fact, higher levels of TNFa and IL-1ß are associated with severity of
"Finally, EPA has been hypothesized to increase
brain-derived neurotropic factor (BDNF), which is known to be lower
in depressed patients.20 BDNF is neuroprotective, enhances
neurotransmission, has antidepressant activity and supports normal brain
structure. BDNF may prevent the death of nerve cells in
More information about sources of omega-3s can be found on the page Nutrition: Essential Fatty
Acid (EFA) Sources
"Flax, our richest source of omega 3, quickly
replenishes a long-standing omega 3 deficiency. A dozen 8 oz. bottles
of good quality flax oil consumed over the course of a few months will
suffice [approximately one bottle every five days, 1.6 ounces per
"There have been some published case reports indicating
that flaxseed oil may be helpful in cases of bipolar depression and
the anxiety disorder agoraphobia.40 The first controlled clinical
trial indicating that omega-3 fatty acids may be of benefit in depression was
published in 1999. In this case, 9:6 g ['9:6 g' should be read a
dose of 6 g per day for a period of nine days?] of EPA/DHA versus placebo
led to longer periods of remission and improvement in depressive symptoms
in those with bipolar depression.41"
"Some researchers theorize that such high doses of
EPA/DHA may not be necessary and that low levels of pure EPA may
be of benefit.32 In a study published in the American Journal of
Psychiatry, researchers showed that just 2g of pure EPA could improve
the symptoms of treatment-resistant depression. The researchers found
that the EPA (versus placebo), when added to an ineffective antidepressant
for one month, significantly improved depressive symptoms.42"
"A larger study published in Archives of General
Psychiatry replicated these findings, however, this time various doses of EPA
were examined. Those on ineffective antidepressants were given 1g, 2g or 4g
of pure EPA or a placebo in addition to the medication. Interestingly, the 1g
daily dose of EPA led to the most significant improvements over
the three-month study; it appeared that less was more. There
were significant improvements in depressive symptoms, sleep, anxiety,
lassitude, libido and thoughts of suicide.43"
"Harvard researchers have also shown that just 1g of pure
EPA is beneficial in the treatment of borderline personality
disorder. This personality disorder, which is particularly difficult to
treat, is characterized by both depressive and aggressive symptoms. This was
a two-month placebo-controlled study and the results showed that EPA has a
mood-regulating effect, improving both depression and aggression versus
"There is also evidence that omega-3 oils may be of
benefit in treating depressive symptoms outside of major depressive disorder.
Canadian researchers showed that Antarctic krill oil (400mg EPA, 240mg
DHA) could improve depressive symptoms associated with premenstrual
"To date, with one exception, all studies conducted on
omega-3 fatty acids and mood have had a positive outcome. The singular
negative study examined pure DHA in patients with depression. The results in
the case showed that DHA alone was no better than placebo in alleviating
"Long--term exclusion or excessive use of flax oil can result
in omega 6 deficiency after about two years, because flax oil is omega 3 rich but omega 6 poor."