Raynaud's Association https://www.raynauds.org provide support and education to the millions of sufferers of Raynaud's Phenomenon Thu, 17 Sep 2020 19:07:18 +0000 en-US hourly 1 https://wordpress.org/?v=5.5.1 45444418 FlavaNaturals® https://www.raynauds.org/2020/09/15/flavanaturals/ https://www.raynauds.org/2020/09/15/flavanaturals/#respond Tue, 15 Sep 2020 20:56:52 +0000 https://www.raynauds.org/?p=13536

FlavaNaturals

We know what you’re thinking, what’s a yummy product like chocolate doing in our Marketplace section? Well it turns out that high levels of cocoa flavanols found in dark chocolate and cocoa powder offer several health benefits, including improved circulation. FlavaNaturals is a great resource for dark chocolate that is high in cocoa flavanols with the taste of gourmet heaven!

When we first started studying the health benefits of cocoa flavanols, we found there were clinical studies showing improved cognition and heart health, and that most experts attribute these benefits to improved blood flow (cocoa flavanols support circulation by boosting artery dilation and elasticity). Next we discovered scientific evidence that cocoa flavanols can help bolster your mood and reduce stress, a key trigger for Raynaud’s attacks. Have to admit a chocolate bar a day would definitely be a great pick me up! Rather than spend a lot of time here on the science behind how cocoa flavanols work, check out our article titled Can Cocoa Flavanols Help Frosties? from an earlier blog post.

OK, but can chocolate really help Frosties? To date, there haven’t been clinical trials to address this question, but we were curious to give it a try. We worked with FlavaNaturals to recruit 35 people with Raynaud’s and had them try FlavaMix cocoa powder with 900mg of cocoa flavanols daily for a month. It’s not a huge sample, and it was only an observational study (no control group), but the results were promising: 40% stated they experienced a benefit in terms of either fewer or less severe attacks, less pain in their extremities and/or were better able to tolerate the cold. We’ve conducted similar tests with two other drinkable powder-based products containing L’Arginine, an amino acid known to help boost circulation in its topical form. Neither of these tests produced the kind of positive feedback we received from the cocoa flavanol study group.

But before you start stocking up on Hershey bars, know that cocoa flavanol levels consumed in successful clinical studies generally range between 500mg and 1,000mg per day.  That’s five times more than you’ll find in a standard bar of dark chocolate or a serving of cocoa powder, and don’t even think about comparing it to milk chocolate with even less, or white chocolate that has none at all!

That’s why it’s important to know your chocolate source. It turns out that flavanols levels vary substantially from bean to bean and can be mostly destroyed by conventional chocolate processing. FlavaNaturals has developed proprietary methods of bean sourcing, harvesting, fermentation, roasting and handling. The company searches the world to find the most premium high flavanol beans, partners with farmers to assure selection of only the best and freshest beans, and uses precise controls in the fermentation and roasting processes to maximize both cocoa flavanols and rich chocolate flavor.

FlavaNaturals

FlavaNaturals makes two flavanol-rich (and tasty!) products: FlavaMix cocoa powder and FlavaBar dark chocolate bars. FlavaMix is an unsweetened cocoa powder that is the richest form of cocoa flavanols. It comes in either a large canister, or a pouch with single serving packets each containing 900mg of cocoa flavanols. This is the recommended daily serving size to obtain maximum health benefits. Keep in mind the cocoa powder in this product form is unsweetened, so sweeten to taste and mix it in with your smoothies, protein shakes, oatmeal, yogurt, or try one of the delicious recipes found on the company’s web site like their Chocolate Banana Yogurt Smoothie Bowl. Hard to believe this can be good for you! And a single serving of FlavaMix adds only 35 calories to your favorite mix-in ingredients!

FlavaBars are quick and easy-to-eat dark chocolate bars with flavors that will make your mouth water, including: Blueberry + Green Tea, Ginger + Saigon Cinnamon, Roasted Almond + Himalayan Pink Salt, and Espresso Ground Coffee. For chocolate purists, there’s also Pure Cocoa Nibs and Classic Dark Chocolate. Each delicious bar contains 500mg of cocoa flavanols. And if you can’t make up your mind, try the Library Set with a full assortment that makes a great gift for any chocolate lover on your list. I compared the calorie content of these bars to one of my favorite indulgent foods: Each bar contains approximately 180 calories – that’s the equivalent of one Mint Chocolate Covered Oreo, but is so much better for you!

Special Discount for Our Members:

Offer Code: FROSTIES

FlavaMix cocoa powder comes in two sizes: The large canister with 31 900mg portions for $49.99, or the 10-pack single serve sachets for $19.99. FlavaBars sell in 10-packs for $23.99, or try the library gift set of 10-mixed flavors for $25.95.

But it gets better, as a Sponsor of the Raynaud’s Association, FlavaNaturals is offering our members a 10% discount. Just use discount code FROSTIES during the checkout process.

The price may sound like a lot for chocolate, but when you think about the work that goes into the sourcing and manufacturing process in order to maintain levels of flavanols not found in other products, you’ll understand why this is no ordinary chocolate – it’s decadent chocolate that can offer health benefits with a lot less guilt!

FlavaNaturals®

FlavaNaturals®
P.O. Box 1236
Marblehead, MA 01945
858-729-4095

Life@FlavaNaturals.com

Visit Website

View Sponsor Listing

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CosySoles Microwave Heated Slippers https://www.raynauds.org/2020/08/25/cosysoles-microwave-heated-slippers/ Tue, 25 Aug 2020 20:27:28 +0000 https://www.raynauds.org/?p=13867

CosySoles Microwave Heated Slippers

We’ve tried a number of rice-based microwaveable slippers in the past and haven’t been all that impressed.  So when we were approached by CosySole’s team, we were skeptical, but CosySoles Microwave Heated Slippers stood up to the test!

The issue we’ve had with most rice-based heated slippers is that they generally aren’t “walkable;” the soles of the slippers tend to be uneven on the bottom, making it difficult to walk comfortably.  That’s not the case for CosySoles – the slippers have a smooth, flat bottom surface.  You’re not really conscious of the rice as you move because the grains are spread throughout the top portion of the slipper, not the sole, allowing for easy mobility while the heat-retentive natural grains distribute warmth evenly to the entire surface of your foot.

And these soft booties are really comfy!  The fabric is a double layer of quality polar fleece that reaches up over the ankle (with the option to fold them down).  The natural stretch built into the fleecy fabric will adapt comfortably to your feet.  Plus there’s an adjustable Velcro® ankle strap to help keep the booties securely in place while protecting them from losing any yummy heat, a welcome product feature.

The heating process is simple because there are no inserts or assembly required, and no batteries to recharge for hours or wires to connect.  Just pop the slippers into the microwave.  Assuming you’re warming both together (and trust me, if you heat only one slipper, your other foot will be really sorry!), it takes from 1.5 to 2.5 minutes (pending the size).  Then place your cold tootsies in these toasty booties for heavenly warmth!  The microwave process also kills bacteria, something to think about in these challenging times.

The heat is more of a therapeutic, soothing warmth. not too hot or burning, yet warm enough to experience the heat (unlike some products that are more subtle, and you only feel the lack of heat when exiting them). 

The instructions are short, but very specific:  Microwave time is a function of the number of slippers you’re warming and their size (Smalls take about 45 seconds, Larges 1.25 minutes; double the warming time for heating both slippers together).  The first few times, they may seem a bit moist – we’re told this is a natural process caused by the moisture in the grain but will be reduced after a few uses.  I personally didn’t notice the issue with the slippers but did when trying their glove product.

It was mid-summer when I tested CosySoles and difficult to find just the right time to give them a try, but on one chilly, rainy day after a hurricane in our area, I was in the mood for some soothing therapy, and it was most welcome, just wish the warmth lasted longer!  I was aware of the heat for about 20 to 25 minutes, but even later after removing the booties, I could tell the slipper environment was still warmer than room temperature because the ankle strap helped maintain some of the heat.

One alert about these toasty slippers:  Be careful walking on a polished wood floor.  They do not have rubberized bottoms (probably an issue for microwaving), so the fabric can be a bit slick walking too fast with them on.  But as part of a therapeutic experience, why rush wearing these warm booties?  Slow down and enjoy the warmth!

Special Discount for Our Members:

Offer Code:  RAYNAUDS

CosySoles come in two neutral colors (Black and Beige) and three unisex sizes (S,M,L) – check their sizing chart to determine the best fit.  For International Frosties, here’s welcome news:  The web site offers shopping across five currencies (a first for one of our Sponsors!).  They sell for a U.S. dollar price of $56.95, that’s about one-third the price you’d pay for a battery-powered product, so it’s a great value.  

As a Corporate Sponsor of the Raynaud’s Association, our members receive a 10% discount with the Promotional Code RAYNAUDS.  Use the link below to order and let us know how you like CosySoles Microwave Heated Slippers!

CosySoles

1011 Holdsworth Crescent
Milton, ON L9T 0C3
Canada

Email CosySoles

Visit Website

View Sponsor Listing

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Updated Coronavirus Message for Raynaud’s Sufferers https://www.raynauds.org/2020/08/19/updated-coronavirus-message-for-raynauds-sufferers/ Wed, 19 Aug 2020 17:59:57 +0000 https://www.raynauds.org/?p=13754

Updated Coronavirus Message for Raynaud's Sufferers

Since publishing our earlier post “A Coronavirus Message for Raynaud’s Sufferers,” we’ve had questions from fellow Frosties regarding newly reported symptoms and their relevance for people living with Raynaud’s. So we’re posting this updated Coronavirus message for Raynaud’s sufferers. Spoiler alert: It doesn’t contain the type of information we’d hoped to supply.

Lack of Data is Frustrating

Some of the more recently discovered medical issues associated with Covid-19 include strokes, blood clots and Covid toe. Given that these and other medical complications from the virus can involve inflammation of the blood vessels and affect a patient’s circulation, we asked our Medical Advisory Board these questions:

  • If a Raynaud’s patient gets the virus, would they be more at risk in experiencing these complications? 
  • Could these complications be more serious for someone with Raynaud’s?

We were hoping for some answers to share, but here’s what we were told: “Unfortunately there are no reliable answers to your questions.” Our Medical Advisory Board stands by their earlier statement from our previous post: “There is no evidence to suggest that people with primary Raynaud’s are at any increased risk of getting COVID-19, nor are they at risk of a worse outcome if infected with the virus than non-Raynaud’s sufferers.”

So What Can We Do?

Keep in mind the issue of “no evidence” in the above statement is key. In the absence of data, the smartest strategy is to follow the guidance provided by leading medical experts: Wear masks, practice social distancing, wash your hands frequently…you’ve heard all of this now many times, but it truly can make a difference!

For those with secondary Raynaud’s, being mindful of these safe practices is even more important as their immune systems can already be compromised by a more serious autoimmune disorder or other medical factors known to be associated with higher risk complications from the virus, such as those with diabetes.

One Piece of Raynaud’s-Specific Advice

For all of us living with Raynaud’s, these can be very stressful times, and stress can trigger attacks, so remember to take time for yourself, try to enjoy this at-home time with close family and find some silver lining that helps get you through the challenging days and nights.

We’d hoped this updated Coronavirus message for Raynaud’s sufferers would provide more advice targeted specifically for Frosties, but the virus is just too new, and what limited data there is just hasn’t yet been sorted from this perspective. But we promise to work at keeping up-to-date and will share new information as we can find it. In the meantime, please stay warm and well!

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Just Published: Cold Cuts Summer 2020 Newsletter https://www.raynauds.org/2020/08/18/just-published-cold-cuts-summer-2020-newsletter/ Tue, 18 Aug 2020 19:12:32 +0000 https://www.raynauds.org/?p=13831
Cold Cuts Summer 2020 Newsletter

Just Published: Cold Cuts Summer 2020 Newsletter! Featured articles include:

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Member Spotlight: Pam Weller https://www.raynauds.org/2020/08/10/member-spotlight-pam-weller/ Mon, 10 Aug 2020 15:29:00 +0000 https://www.raynauds.org/?p=13771

Pam Weller

Being an avid skier living in Canada, Pam Weller is determined to do the things she loves despite her Raynaud’s.

Pam Weller - Skiiing

Now 39, Pam is typical of the vast majority of Raynaud’s sufferers—a woman of childbearing age with the primary form. “I was in my mid 20’s when I started noticing the cold affected me a lot more than before,” she recalls. “I would wrap myself in layers of clothes and gloves, while others on the slopes didn’t even have jackets on.” 

In her early 30’s, she noticed her fingers turning colors. “’When I began to notice it, there wasn’t much pain,’ she said, ‘but over the years the pain has gotten worse in my fingers as the warmth returns.” Pam was one of the few – only 10 percent – of Frosties who sought medical attention. Her family doctor diagnosed the disorder.

“I am not on any medications, as the main one used here in Canada can lower blood pressure (and mine is already low enough),” she said. “I keep gloves with me almost year-round. I also have a large inventory of the single use hand warmers and I have invested in very good winter clothing.”

When she told others of her diagnosis, almost no one knew what Raynaud’s was, noted the former veterinary technician. “Most seemed to think it was something made up, or not really of any concern—until they saw it first-hand,” she said. “My boyfriend had never heard of it before we met, but he’s been great at making sure I always have extra gloves packed and my hand warmers are always stocked up. My family is also understanding, helping where they can.”       

Pam Weller - Face Shot

Many of Pam’s former co-workers at the veterinary practice were very supportive, handling the animals’ winter walks for her so she could stay indoors. In the pet store where she currently works, however, the situation is different. “Everyone loves to have the air conditioning blasting all summer, but I’m the only one who doesn’t, so I lose the vote to change the temperature,” she says. 

She has to do the stocking of the frozen food at the store, which is difficult, but she talked the manager into purchasing good quality freezer gloves for her. “They help a little, but I still can only handle the frozen things for short periods of time.”

Although Pam still finds many people are unfamiliar with Raynaud’s, she makes it a practice to raise awareness about the condition. “It’s not so rare, I’ve learned,” she says. “On Halloween last year, a rainy, damp and chilly day, we met our new neighbors. I was constantly rubbing my hands together and had to keep going inside. It turned out my neighbor was doing the same thing because she has it too!” 

Pam is grateful for the resources and support she’s found via the Raynaud’s Association. Her advice to fellow Frosties? “Mittens!” she says. “I’ve found they’re so much better than gloves. Also invest when you can in good quality winter wear (I usually buy off-season when the sales are on.). A good thermal mug is great for the days when you’re caught out without gloves or mittens. Hot chocolate, coffee, tea or anything warm is a lifesaver to hold onto.“

Pam’s best advice? “Don’t let this ruin your life and stop you from enjoying things that you once loved.” 

For more on our Member Spotlight feature, here’s the original post: Introducing Member Spotlight!

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Hot Products for Summer 2020 https://www.raynauds.org/2020/08/01/hot-products-for-summer-2020/ Sat, 01 Aug 2020 16:21:03 +0000 https://www.raynauds.org/?p=13798

As it’s difficult finding new products for those living with Raynaud’s in the warmer months, we’re again featuring our Corporate Sponsors whose product offerings can help us stay safe and well during these challenging times. Here are our Hot Products for Summer 2020:

Hot Products for Summer 2020

FibreHeat™ NoVirGuard™ Masks – These masks created by FibreHeat (formerly known as UNIQKNITS™, makers of those toasty Self-Heating Gloves!) offer 2-way protection through a built-in anti-viral filter that protects both the wearer and the public at large. That unique feature for reusable masks, along with their first-rate quality and design, is why we chose these masks to carry our logo and offer them in our Raynaud’s Store.

Plus there’s no sacrificing comfort for safety – compared to disposable KN-95 medical masks, NoVirGuard™ Masks are more breathable and are washable for reuse. Lots of colorful, fun designs to choose from – flowers, sneakers, stripes, your favorite sports and hobbies, you’ll find more than one that helps you express your playful side!  Available in 2 styles and 4 sizes on the FibreHeat™ web site starting at $24.95, with quantity discounts. The XS size is perfect for protecting young children. Use Offer Code RA2020 for our 10% member discount!

Hot Products for Summer 2020

Nutrasal Micro D-3 w/ Nano Technology – We’re all thinking about how to arm our body’s immune system these days. While there’s no magic bullet against the virus, there is clinical evidence linking a Vitamin D deficiency with increased susceptibility to infections. Studies also have linked Vitamin D deficiency and several autoimmune diseases to which Raynaud’s can be secondary, including multiple sclerosis, rheumatoid arthritis, diabetes, and lupus. And while there’s no medical consensus on the optimal mode and dosage for Vitamin D, research has supported supplementing our Vitamin D levels to help prevent respiratory infections and colds.

As we’re spending more time indoors in front of our TVs and digital devices, we’re not getting as much sun exposure as did earlier generations, so we’re more susceptible to being Vitamin D deficient than ever.

Nutrasal’s Micro D-3 is an optimized form of Vitamin D that increases absorption. The nano technology behind the product powers a breakthrough delivery system providing up to 10 times more Vitamin D into the body when compared to ordinary soft gelatin capsules and other liquid products. Micro D-3 is on sale now at Nutrasal’s web site for $19.39 (a $5 savings), plus use our member offer code RA25 for a 25% discount!

If you try any of these Hot Products for Summer 2020, we’d love your feedback, and please share your new product finds with us. Write to info@raynauds.org, post them in our Discussion Forum, on our Facebook Fan page or share them with us on Instagram.

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The Thermostat Battle Continues https://www.raynauds.org/2020/07/22/the-thermostat-battle-continues/ Wed, 22 Jul 2020 19:14:02 +0000 https://www.raynauds.org/?p=13715

Thermostat Battle Continues

In a recent article in the Wall Street Journal the thermostat battle continues and asks the question: Why are women colder than men? This is an issue close to the hearts of many Frosties who suffer through air conditioning in warm weather months with frozen fingers and toes (and maybe a few noses, too!).

Several articles have covered this issue over the years. They talk about scientific evidence that suggests women in general have a lower tolerance to the pain of cold than men, yet office temperatures are historically set for the comfort of male workers dressed in traditional long-sleeve shirts, jackets and ties – even now that office dress codes have been relaxed. We’ve also seen articles reporting how cold temperatures lower people’s productivity and have a negative impact on our office relationships and co-worker trust.

So it’s no surprise to see the Wall Street Journal article titled “Men vs. Women: The Thermostat Battle” on the subject, but it did include one surprising fact: It states that thermal comfort is a function of skin temperature, and that the average skin temperature for men and women shows no significant difference at 92 degrees, according to Dutch thermophysiology expert Boris Kingma.

There’s no further discussion on the issue of skin temperatures, but they do confirm that women prefer higher room temperatures than men. And whether or not there’s a scientific explanation for this preference, they confirm what we’ve seen in earlier studies, that women’s productivity improves at higher temperatures.

In a study of students at both the University of Southern California and the WZB Berlin Social Science Center in Germany, women performed better on math and verbal tasks at higher room temperatures. Female performance improved in both their speed (answered more questions) and accuracy (answered more correctly) when the room was warmer. While men performed better at lower room temperatures, the effect was not statistically significant.

The researchers concluded that because the increase in female performance more than offset the decrease in male productivity as temperatures rose, gender-mixed workplaces would benefit from higher thermostat levels. The recommended temperature range is stated as 73.4 to 78.8 degrees. Certainly a more comfortable level for Frosties who freeze at offices set in the 60s! And at least 80% of both genders appear satisfied with temperatures set at the recommended range. Guess the guys in this study were more open-minded than most of the ones in offices we tend to work with…

So if skin temperatures are generally equal for men and women, why the difference in response to warmer temperatures? The article quotes information we’ve seen published elsewhere: Women have lower metabolic rates, resulting in less heat production. That, combined with a larger ratio of surface to body mass, results in greater heat loss, and hence a greater sensitivity to cold.

Given there’s so much published on the subject, plus the fact that lowering air conditioning levels saves the boss money, you’d think this would be a no brainer issue, but the thermostat battle continues…

Here’s the full article in the Wall Street Journal:

Men vs. Women: The Thermostat Battle

Below are more articles from our blog on the subject:

Let the Thermostat Wars Begin!

Who controls the thermostat in your home?

Cold Temperatures Impact Office Productivity

Office Chills? There’s an App for That!

College Humor Video: Why Summer is Women’s Winter

Summertime, and the Livin’ is Freezing

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Raynaud’s Logo NoVirGuard™ Masks https://www.raynauds.org/2020/07/16/raynauds-logo-novirguard-masks/ Thu, 16 Jul 2020 16:53:58 +0000 https://www.raynauds.org/?p=13674



Raynaud’s Logo NoVirGuard™ Masks

Introducing our new Raynaud’s Logo NoVirGuard™ Masks!

When we saw these NoVirGuard™ Masks from our Sponsor at FibreHeat™ (previously known as UNIQKNITS™, makers of those great Self-Heating Gloves!), we were blown away by the quality and design. But the real difference in these masks is the built-in anti-viral filter offering 2-way protection: They protect both the wearer and the public at large. Plus there’s no sacrificing comfort for safety – compared to KN-95 medical masks, NoVirGuard™ Masks are more breathable and are washable for reuse.

We wanted to make them available to the Raynaud’s community featuring our logo of a Frostie on a pastel blue background reaching for and finding warmth. This logo character provides inspiration to all Raynaud’s sufferers that warmth and comfort are within reach. Wear them proudly to help us increase awareness of Raynaud’s phenomenon and reach the millions of people living with Raynaud’s who do not realize that their pain and discomfort have a medical explanation.

The outer fabric is 100% cotton, with leading-edge SILVERPLUS® antimicrobial silver ion finish, which makes a huge difference in the summer, preventing odors. (SILVERPLUS® is a registered trademark of the Rudolf Group, Germany). The cotton fabrics are free from chemical finishes that were never meant to be inhaled, which can be an issue with many homemade masks.

Raynaud's Logo NoVirGuard™ Masks

The built-in filter material is a specially designed polyester lab-certified screen for use in hospitals as a virus guard. This VirusGuard Nanoscreen™ filter provides 95+ percent droplet protection in compliance with CDC and WHO guidelines (VirusGuard Nanoscreen™ is a trademark of BMT Fibers). This special filter material transforms these fashionable fabric safety masks into performance lifestyle masks that deliver the right balance of safety and breathability for people on the move.

  • Adjustable 100% latex-free elastic ear loops for better fit and comfort
  • 3 different sizes for improved fit and better protection
  • Elastic extends from ear loops for easy “necklace hanging” when taking mask breaks (a user-requested feature)
  • These contoured style masks provide additional assurance that when the right size is chosen (click for sizing chart), air can only travel through the filter

These attractive and high-quality Raynaud’s Logo NoVirGuard™ Masks offer a unique combination of fashion, protection, and comfort not available in standard disposable or cloth masks we’ve found anywhere else. We hope you and your family will want several to help us promote Raynaud’s awareness during Raynaud’s Awareness Month in October and throughout the year!

Order Raynaud’s Logo NoVirGuard™ Masks now at the special introductory price of $22.95 in our Raynaud’s Store. And while you’re there, check out our full array of logo apparel and educational materials. Every purchase helps support our efforts in exploring ways to bring warmth, comfort – and now safety – to the Raynaud’s community.

Note: Not for clinical use

Care: Machine wash cold, delicate cycle. Do not bleach. Tumble dry low, remove while damp, hang dry. Tested to 100 washings without any degradation.

Design and quality workmanship by Upmarket Stitchers, New Bedford, MA
Made in USA

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Raynaud’s Article on DrAxe.com https://www.raynauds.org/2020/07/07/raynauds-article-on-draxe-com/ Tue, 07 Jul 2020 23:35:16 +0000 https://www.raynauds.org/?p=13619

Raynaud's Article on DrAxe.com

Dr. Josh Axe is a wellness physician and clinical nutritionist who claims to help people get well using food as medicine. So when we found a Raynaud’s article on DrAxe.com, we were hoping to find some nutritional tips for those with Raynaud’s – a subject much in demand from our members.

The article overall does a good job of explaining Raynaud’s, the two types (primary vs. secondary) and the experience associated with having a Raynaud’s attack (key triggers, pain, color changes, etc.). The author, Christine Ruggeri, a member of the Dr. Axe content team, also covers variations on the duration of attacks (a few minutes to several hours), frequency of attacks (occasional, daily, several times a day), and extreme complications that people with the most severe forms of Raynaud’s may experience (digital ulcers, gangrene, amputations).

They also list a number of primary ailments that are associated with the secondary form of Raynaud’s, including a few often missed (atherosclerosis, Buerger’s disease, hypothyroidism and blood disorders like cryoglobulinemia), plus the role played by occupational factors (Vibration White Finger), trauma or accidental injuries to extremities, exposure to toxins and drugs that restrict blood flow (chemo, beta blockers), and the role played by smoking (alcohol’s impact is mixed). Common medications used to treat Raynaud’s symptoms are also covered (calcium channel blockers, topical nitrates, and one group of drugs not often discussed – prostaglandins). For those not responsive to these drugs, surgical procedures (sympathectomies where nerves are cut or blocked) are used in more severe cases.

We appreciate the fact that the author did a lot of homework for this article, indicated by various footnotes linking to research studies published on the subject. But considering the fact that they quote the incidence of Raynaud’s in several places as 5% of the population, we’re puzzled by their reference to Raynaud’s as a “rare” condition. If you search for the definition of a rare disease, here’s what you’ll find: “In the United States, a rare disease is defined as a condition that affects fewer than 200,000 people in the US.”

A disorder representing 5% of the population affects 16 million people.  Our organization quotes sources estimating the incidence of Raynaud’s as 5 to 10% of the population. On the higher end, that’s over 30 million sufferers. In any case, we’re talking millions, not a couple of hundred thousand. It doesn’t help our case for Raynaud’s to be referenced as “rare” – we want more people, the medical community and pharmaceutical companies to pay increased attention to the size of the Raynaud’s population and take it seriously. So the label of “rare” was disappointing given the amount of time and attention given to collecting so much background information. Unfortunately it’s not rare to see Raynaud’s labeled as rare. That’s why we call it out when we see it published.

Finally, the author ends with a heading of 6 Natural Remedies for Raynaud’s Syndrome Symptoms. Our expectation was to find a list of dietary suggestions for people living with Raynaud’s. Instead, the first thing we see is “Avoid Cold Temperatures,” with ideas like bring a sweater if entering an air conditioned area, wear gloves when using the freezer, and windmill your arms to get the circulation back. Other tips include “Reduce Emotional and Physical Stress” and “Stop Smoking.” Not what we expected from a nutritional expert!

Finally, Tips # 4 and #5 offer more non-traditional advice: “Eat an Anti-inflammatory Diet” and “Try Acupuncture.” We’ve published several articles on acupuncture as a treatment for Raynaud’s, and while there’s no accepted clinical evidence for the effectiveness of acupuncture as a treatment for alleviating Raynaud’s symptoms, we do believe finding the right practitioner with a track record in treating Raynaud’s patients can be a positive factor. 

My Raynaud’s Journey with Acupuncture

Treating Raynaud’s Subjects with Acupuncture

Regarding the author’s advice on eating an anti-inflammatory diet, the whole premise is based on Secondary Raynaud’s being largely associated with autoimmune diseases, so their hypothesis is that “working to reverse or relieve the condition” (inflammation?) can also reduce Raynaud’s attacks.  Well, since 90% of sufferers have the primary form, that’s not really too helpful for the majority of people living with Raynaud’s. It may be better to reference one of our more popular articles, suggesting a well-balanced diet, exercise and the elimination of toxins such as cigarettes and caffeine, plus adding a few supplements, such as magnesium, Vitamin B and omega-3 fatty acids found in fish oil.

Nutrition’s Effect on Raynaud’s Disease

Finally, the Raynaud’s article on DrAxe.com offers one final tip: “Avoid Vasoconstrictive Medications,” such as the ones referenced earlier that can trigger attacks, including beta blockers, over-the-counter allergy pills, diet pills, and birth control pills. Others, such as migraine medications, ADHD and cancer treatment drugs can’t always be avoided, as they suggest, so just be aware that these meds can aggravate Raynaud’s symptoms. Discuss the options that are the best trade-off for you with your doctor.

Wish there was more nutritional and alternative medicine advice here, but we’ll keep searching!

Here’s the full Raynaud’s article at DrAxe.com:

Raynaud’s Syndrome (+ 6 Tips for Natural Raynaud’s Treatment)

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Introducing Member Spotlight! https://www.raynauds.org/2020/06/14/introducing-member-spotlight/ Sun, 14 Jun 2020 20:52:51 +0000 https://www.raynauds.org/?p=13510

Introducing Members Spotlight

Introducing Member Spotlight – a new feature for our Raynaud’s Blog and Cold Cuts Newsletter where fellow Frosties share their stories. It starts by hearing from you!

Things we’d love for you to share include:

  • How you were diagnosed
  • The hardships or limitations you experience as a Raynaud’s sufferer
  • How you cope day-to-day (e.g. products and medications used)
  • Life changes you made
  • How coping with your Raynaud’s has been more challenging during quarantine and the stress of the virus
  • How you learned about the Raynaud’s Association
  • How you use the Raynaud’s Association as a resource

Many of us had a difficult time getting doctors to recognize our symptoms. Some Frosties have to deal with friends, family and business associates not taking their pain and discomfort seriously. There may be difficult challenges at work (e.g. air conditioning in the warmer months), or just everyday challenges in the kitchen (e.g. defrosting meat).

We’d love to hear from you. Just fill out the Tell Us About You Form on our web site. If we choose to share all or part of your story in our next Member Spotlight, you’ll receive an email seeking your permission to do so. If we’d like more input, you’ll be hearing from us so we can speak with you directly for a short interview to learn more.

By sharing your experiences and challenges, fellow Frosties will see that they are not alone. There are millions of people living with Raynaud’s, and we learn a great deal from each other. So please send in your Tell Us About You Form now and share your voice with the Raynaud’s community!

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