051: How To Decide What’s Best For Your Skin Rashes

It’s not uncommon to feel really overwhelmed with what you should do with skin rashes that make you crazy. Most people have tried lots of creams available at the store as well as the things recommended by their doctor hoping to get relief.

But at a certain point, you may find yourself questioning if there’s something more than the conventional route.

Thoughts may begin to creep in as you start to wonder if something under the surface is to blame for your skin.

The decisions that you make about how to address your skin are based on something that I call Health Values.

Knowing what yours are is important so that you don’t get pushed into treatments that ultimately aren’t a good fit for you (and can end up wasting a lot of time and money).

I’m breaking this all down in today’s episode!

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In this episode:

  • What mindset do you have about your health and how much do you want to be involved?
  • Why the “fastest route” to clear skin can have consequences
  • Beware of desperation — Make your decisions with all of the cards on the table
  • Want to go an alternative route? Be willing to do the work
  • Why you don’t need to know everything to see results


It’s equally okay to want as well as NOT want pills and creams to deal with your skin problems. The difference in which way you choose to go comes down to your values. Each route requires compromise — and neither is a perfectly straight line to clear skin. Especially since everything we do (both natural and conventional) has consequences.

There is so much more to your health than what you write on the intake form. We’ve been conditioned to blow off and ignore things, so it’s time to undo that bad habit since tuning into your symptoms is critical. So you’ve got to be present to the process so that you can tell me things that you had no idea would be important OR have forgotten without any additional prompting.

Signs pointing multiple directions

Full Transcript

Welcome back to episode #51 of the Healthy Skin Show!

Today I want to touch on a topic that will help you decide which way to go when it comes to making those executive decisions for your rashes.

You’ve probably heard me say that you should make the best decisions for your skin based on your own health values.

It’s an important part of the equation because when you’re left feeling helpless, it can be the result of not being clear on what’s important to you!

The truth is… it’s okay to not want pills and creams anymore to band-aide your skin problems.

And it’s equally okay to want them and whatever else the doctor can throw at your skin.

The difference in which way you choose to go comes down to your values.

It’s about what’s important to you and what you’re willing to give up in order to get to your destination or goal.

Path through the forest

Each route requires compromise — and neither is a perfectly straight line to clear skin.

I wish there was a magic wand that I could wave to solve your rash puzzle, but unfortunately, it doesn’t exist.

Healing isn’t a straight line and everything we do (both natural and conventional) has consequences.

So let’s talk this through so you can get a bit clearer on what your values are and if the way you’re addressing your skin is truly in line with your values!

Why It’s Important To Make Value-Rooted Health Decisions About Your Skin

These health values will guide every single decision that you’ll make from whether you take ibuprofen at the slightest of headaches to bigger, more serious decisions made in more life-and-death scenarios.

You might want to pump the brakes the moment the doctor mentions antibiotics or any type of medication while others will say — bring it on if it will help me!

There’s not really two camps here because you can certainly fall within a spectrum of values.

Color Spectrum

And wherever you fall on that spectrum is okay.

There’s no wrong choice or decision (no matter what anyone else says). I personally believe that we are each a steward of the one body that you’ve got. It’s part of your life’s purpose to care for this precious vessel as best you can.

That said, everyone approaches this differently.

If you’ve tuned into the Healthy Skin Show for some time now, you know that I’m pretty non-dogmatic.

The reason is that I’ve worked in the conventional healthcare system. I’ve also experienced my own health problems and explored both conventional and alternative modalities.

And I’ve also experienced ridicule (from normal people all the way to medical doctors for my own choices).

But my executive health decisions were my own and because they’ve always been rooted in my health values, I never felt bad no matter who was making critical comments.

I knew what I wanted to try and was comfortable with my own choices.

What do I mean by executive health decisions?

Dog dressed up as the boss

At the end of the day, you’re the boss of your body and your health.

You get to make the final decisions when it comes to taking action on something.

No matter who makes a recommendation, suggestion, or outright gives you directions to follow — you always have the final say.

You can choose to follow directions or not.

And you can also change the people whom you get advice from so that you get answers or solutions from a different perspective.

But the point is that you always make the final decision.

Doctor explaining diagnosis to patient

“Doctor is always right” VS “I’m an equal partner”

Discussions about health can be tricky because everyone seems to have an opinion. And some think that their opinion is better than yours!

I have a local acquaintance who thinks that anyone who decides to take their health into their own hands and doesn’t listen to the doctor is nuts.

I have relatives who will literally do and take anything recommended by their doctor. And they don’t ever question anything.

And yet, when you start to open your eyes to a more functional approach, you begin to see a different sort of relationship emerge — you are a part of a team!

What I’d encourage you to do is think about what you like as well as what you really hate about your current medical professional relationships.

And then to ask yourself WHY you feel the way that you do.

It’s not uncommon to dislike certain practitioners who you feel don’t really listen to you.

So in that case, one of your health values is that you want to feel heard. And you want your experience to matter.

And there’s also the “pill mentality” that can also inform whether you’re willing to make additional lifestyle changes or if you just want relief from taking medication.

No matter what medication you choose to go with, don’t go in blind!

Man wearing blindfold in forest

There are side effects to every single medication. 

{Check out the problems with eczema meds and this other article on psoriasis medications.}

Sure, only a tiny percentage may be affected by medication in a negative way. But it doesn’t feel so hot if YOU end up being a part of that group.

So know what you are getting into BEFORE you start a medication. Know what the risks and side effects are because some can be devastating (no matter how small the risk). You can easily look up this information on www.rxlist.com or www.drugs.com or reviewing the brochure or website for the drug thoroughly.

Then have an informed discussion with your doctor about your concerns based on your review of those medications.

Making the best decision for you shouldn’t be based on how desperate you are to get relief… but instead, your health values, research, and having a discussion about the pros and cons of your potential decision with your health practitioners.

Just an FYI — some of the pill mentality has bled into functional medicine. Some people just want supplements to fix everything. An example would be that they’d rather take a supplement to manage out-of-control stress that could instead be helped with breathing exercises and other mindfulness practices.

There are others who only want to address their health issues with food.

And yet others who feel like they can’t trust any practitioners at all and want to do all of the heavy lifting themselves even if it takes ten times as long, costs more money in the long run, and may or may not get them to the end goal.

There is no wrong way to make these different types of executive health decisions, but you should be aware that each comes with pros and cons.

And should the time come where you need to shift gears, it’s okay to veer from a plan that seemed to be a good fit, but your present circumstances requires a new or different way of meeting your health where you are.

Woman on a journey

If You’ve Been Interested In Being More Involved With Your Healing Journey

If you’ve only known the typical doctor-knows-best relationship and are curious to try something different, here’s what you need to know!

I often describe the relationship that I think works best is one where you are in a partnership — or how I like to think of it, you are a copilot!

When I work with clients, I don’t assume that everything that you write on the intake form is all there is to your health. Not after years of being told that the symptoms and issues we notice aren’t a big deal.

We’ve been conditioned to blow off and ignore things, so it’s time to undo that bad habit since tuning into your symptoms is critical.

So you’ve got to be present as I pick through your history so that you can tell me things that you had no idea would be important OR have forgotten without any additional prompting.

Together, we explore this lengthy history that includes things like the details of your birth, health as a child, medication history to look for nutrient issues, toxic exposures, traumas and stress, daily diet, issues that have popped up on your labs after reviewing them, and all sorts of things

It’s a sort of full disclosure process that helps create a roadmap of sorts with triggers, red flags, and other information that guides where we dig.

Being able to clearly articulate symptoms and what effect different things you’ve tried have had on your condition is critical.

All without getting lost in the forest despite the trees!

Woman lost in the forest

Here’s what you need to know to really get the most out of it…

  • This isn’t a passive process — you have to be involved
  • Energy and time are required on your part to make change happen
  • You will not feel better tomorrow — and the more that’s wrong and the longer you’ve been sick, the longer it will take to resolve issues
  • You have to be willing to share the good and the bad
  • You have to track what was asked of you, even if it seems silly (remember that practitioners look at things differently)
  • Ask questions if you’re confused or have a concern in regards to pretty much anything
  • Express how deeply you’d like your labs explained to you
  • Say something if you’re not feeling well sooner rather than later
  • Tell your practitioner if what they are suggesting is not doable for you

Health supplements and flowers

It’s not just as simple as taking a few supplements and using some herbal creams.

Every step suggested should be intentional so that what you are doing adds up to change.

It may involve doing multiple protocols depending on how sensitive your system is and how much ground needs to be covered.

And you’ve got to check in with your practitioner when you were asked to do so! I like to hear from clients either every week or every other week so that we have the chance to make tweaks and adjust the protocol based on how your body is reacting.

It’s critical to have an open dialog and that you feel like you’re being heard!

This way, you feel supported while also having an integral seat at the table.

Because you are the only one who truly knows what it’s like living in your body.

Only you can provide that feedback.

And only you can do the work that it takes to put a plan into action.

Yes, this is an entirely different sort of relationship, but one that can be incredibly rewarding if you have the mindset that you’d like to explore what’s going on underneath the surface.

Getting clear on your health values and how you want to approach your health puzzle is really important.

No matter what you choose to do, know that your choice is highly personal.

{Need more one-on-one help? Read this!}

And that no matter what you decide, I support you!

Got any questions or comments about this podcast? Thinking about making the leap from conventional medicine to something more integrative? Head on over to this episode’s post to share your thoughts and keep the conversation going.

And please make sure to subscribe and share this episode and the Healthy Skin Show with someone you know who could use a dose of inspiration and hope that there is another way to look at their skin rashes.

Thank you so much for tuning in and I look forward to seeing you in the next episode!

It’s equally okay to want as well as NOT want pills and creams to deal with your skin problems. The difference in which way you choose to go comes down to your values. Each route requires compromise — and neither is a perfectly straight line to clear skin. Especially since everything we do (both natural and conventional) has consequences.

Jennifer Fugo, MS, CNS

Jennifer Fugo, MS, CNS is an integrative Clinical Nutritionist and the founder of Skinterrupt. She works with women who are fed up with chronic gut and skin rash issues discover the root causes and create a plan to get them back to a fuller, richer life.

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