After hearing Shann Jones of the Chuckling Goat, a farm in Wales offering goat products that claim to help with eczema and allergies (read all about it here), on the radio talking persuasively about the benefits of kefir (a probiotic drink made from raw goat’s milk) I decided to take the plunge and order their 21-day course.
In a nutshell here is the theory behind kefir for eczema. If you suffer from eczema – a condition that has recently been added to the list of autoimmune diseases – it’s likely that your gut needs replenishing with some good bacteria which, according to Chuckling Goat, can help prevent your immune system from turning on itself and attacking healthy tissue – think Raquel Welch in the Fantastic Voyage. Read more here.
There is currently a 4 week-long waiting list for their course of Kefir following all the media interest, but I must have got in there just before the rush as my box of bottles arrived in good time, beautifully packaged and insulated with a cold pack so they were perfectly chilled during an unseasonable period of very hot weather. I transferred them straight to the fridge and got quite excited about unleashing all these little bacteria warriors into my gut.
Chuckling Goat recommend that you keep a diary as you work through the course of probiotics to gain an understanding of how it’s all working, and I’m told if your gut’s in pretty bad shape you can expect a tough first few days – so here goes:
Read Week One here
After hitting rock-bottom at the beginning of the first week of taking the 21 day course of kefir for eczema I am happy to report that I am feeling much perkier. My skin has calmed down, it’s gone from the burning and itching to the drying and cracking stage, sounds bad but is in fact much more manageable. I’m feeling more energised with no headache or stomach complaints. I’m not feeling entirely on top of things but so SO much better than at day 4! I have been sleeping extremely well and I’m waking feeling, not exactly refreshed, but well rested.
So, two bottles down four to go. Sun is shining today and when I took the dog for a walk – I didn’t have to drag my leaden limbs across the fields like I did on day 4. I have even been looking forward to my little glass of fizzy magic each morning. But my skin is still pretty awful – dry, irritated and itchy – so, I have given in and have applied my prescription cream to my face, (I was planning on avoiding it to give the kefir a real run for its money but I just couldn’t take it any longer!).
Once the prescription cream had worked its magic I started to feel a lot better. My skin is improving – comfortable and supple, but I can’t say I’m feeling much improved from when I first started the course of kefir. And I can tell my skin is on the edge its seat just waiting to spring into life and react to all those menacing spring pollens floating about in the air. I’m keeping it in check, I think, with all my creams and potions but I can’t see any major change.
I always have a few zits knocking around on my face, probably because of all the creams I have to slather on – clogging my pores. It’s a choice sometimes – shall I have eczema or acne today? Mostly I choose acne, because the eczema is so damned uncomfortable and the acne I can cover up if necessary – there’s no hiding the porridge face. But, now, this may be my imagination but I think the spots are slightly less angry and deeply embedded. They usually feel like the tip of an iceburg – what the rest of the world sees is nothing compared to the massive volcano like structure sitting just beneath the surface of my skin. Since the kefir, they are here today, gone tomorrow as opposed to before when they would be here today, much worse tomorrow and positively Vesuvial the day after!
My skin is starting to feel much more supple and elastic and I am sleeping the sleep of the dead – in a good way. I have one bottle left and am really hoping this is the start of something good.
Suddenly, my skin feels amazing. It’s days since I have put any prescription cream on my face and my skin feels supple, elastic with not a hint of irritation. It does look a bit blotchy and I have a few surface spots, but I actually really don’t care how it looks because it rarely feels this good. I can do anything, smile, yawn, frown and nothing hurts. I have been through patches like this before, so who knows if it’s the kefir – but with three days left, I’ll keep on trucking and let you know.