We already know that if you have a family history of melanoma – for example, if you have a parent or sibling with melanoma – you are at a higher risk for getting melanoma yourself.

But, there is a new study that shows you might also be at a higher risk for other forms of cancer as well, including basal cell and squamous cell carcinoma. These types of skin cancer can look completely different than melanoma! What do these types of cancer look like?

Basal cell: This is the most common type of skin cancer and although it most common in people with fair skin, it can occur in people with darker skin tones. BBCs are common on your head, neck, and arms, but you should have your whole body checked. Early diagnosis is so important because this type of cancer can spread into surrounding tissue and bones.

Squamous cell carcinoma: This is the second most common form of skin cancer. Again, it is also more common in people with lighter skin, but can absolutely develop in people with dark skin. Look for a red, firm bump or a sore that heals and then re-opens. I see these in my office frequently. SCC can grow deep in to your skin and even spread through your body if left undetected!

The take home message – be sure to tell your derm about your family history of skin cancer so that your derm is on the lookout not only for melanoma, but for ALL types of skin cancer!

Let’s keep our skin healthy and sun safe – summer is all about fun in the sun, but there are some very accessible and easy ways to stay healthy this summer!

Here are some helpful links:

https://www.goodmorningamerica.com/wellness/video/family-member-melanoma-increase-risk-skin-cancers-study-64582702

https://drwhitneybowe.com/im-wearing-sunscreen-so-why-am-i-still-getting-burned-or-tan/

https://drwhitneybowe.com/product/heliocare-advanced/

 

Dr. Whitney

I joined Good Morning America to share my Must-Have Summer Sun Crash Kit! With the 4th of July holiday weekend approaching, these are the things you will want to have on-hand in case you get a little too much sun.

I also share some ways to start repairing sun damage to restore your skin’s health.

What started out as a buzz in beauty and wellness circles has become an all-out craze over Cannabis. Why is CBD so hot right now? What does it do? Does it get you high? Is it legal and of course, is it safe? I’ve been testing some really good products in this space lately and I’m looking forward to sharing what I’m learning about it with you.

The Skinny on CBD

To start, there are 80 different compounds that have been extracted from the Cannabis plant. These compounds are called cannabinoids. Interestingly, our bodies have an endocannabinoid system and we even make our own cannabis-type chemical called anandamide!

Two of the most well known cannabinoids are THC, which can get you high, and CBD (which is short for cannabidiol), which does not. In other words, CBD doesn’t lead to feelings of euphoria. Some people say that CBD doesn’t have psychoactive effects, but I beg to differ.  Psychoactive drugs, by definition, can alter your mood.  When I’ve ingested CBD, I definitely notice a change in my mood. I feel more relaxed and at ease.  My patients who struggle with anxiety feel less anxious and more calm.  So, while I don’t think CBD can get you high, I do think it is technically a psychoactive compound.  Caffeine is considered to be psychoactive, so don’t let that term scare you!

When you ingest or absorb CBD, it naturally elevates your own internal cannabinoids/anandamide. And CBD and anandamide receptors are found in numerous parts of our bodies. CBD has gotten a ton of attention lately based on some recent studies are showing that it might have health benefits.

In terms of legality, CBD comes from the cannabis sativa plant. If the plant has less than 0.3% THC content, it’s considered hemp. If it’s got more THC, it’s considered cannabis, not hemp. This makes a difference in terms of whether its legal and in which state.

CBD and Your Skin

If you ingest CBD in a supplement or under your tongue, it enters the bloodstream and can interact with receptors throughout the body.  But if you rub it on the skin, it acts more locally and is less likely to have systemic effects

In particular, CBD appears to have anti-inflammatory properties, and many skin conditions are linked to inflammation, so it’s not a surprise this ingredient is popping up in tinctures, oils and serums. As we know from The Beauty of Dirty Skin, inflammation is the common thread that underlies seemingly unrelated skin issues including acne, rosacea, eczema, psoriasis and even premature aging.

The other potential upside of topical CBD is its potential to act as an analgesic to reduce pain in the skin.  Preliminary studies also suggest cannabis might help with itchy skin, wound healing and even skin cancer.

There are no large clinical trials in humans showing that these compounds are either safe or effective in humans. But, there are a few promising animal and laboratory studies that show potential for topical use that might benefit certain skin conditions.

There are some studies suggesting that topical cannabinoids might help dial down inflammation seen in eczema, skin allergies and psoriasis. Topical application to the skin of mice demonstrated that these molecules were able to not only calm inflammation, but also slow down production of molecules that we know make the skin feel itchy, like histamine. Some studies also show that they can help repair the skin barrier, helping the skin trap moisture while keeping foreign or harmful substances from penetrating into the skin.

Looking Forward:

I believe CBD holds promise for:

  • Acne: studies show that it can dial down redness, inflammation AND helps with sebum production/oil control
  • Itchy and inflamed skin: studies show that it can help to prevent the release of molecules linked with itch (like histamine), could be useful for eczema, bug bites or wounds starting to heal which often itch.
  • Skin cancer: studies show might be able to slow that rapid, uncontrolled, dysregulated cellular division that leads to skin tumors and skin cancers
  • Painful skin (shingles or a sunburn): preliminary studies suggest might even dial down the sensation of pain in the skin.
  • Anxiety: Anxiety is such a skin health saboteur (https://drwhitneybowe.com/stressing-24-7-is-b-b-bad-to-the-biome/) so I have my eye on the available information on CBD and stress!

My Current Thoughts:

For now, here are some of the recommendations I feel comfortable making to my patients. I would feel comfortable using CBD oil as a massage oil on INTACT, HEALTHY skin. I would totally rub it onto your soles before a night in heels! However, I am NOT ready to rub this onto skin that is inflamed. Even though it holds promise for conditions like eczema, rosacea, sunburns and wound healing, we know that ingredients are much more likely to penetrate into inflamed skin. These conditions are all characterized by inflamed skin, and an unhealthy barrier. I like to call this “leaky skin” and leaky skin is vulnerable skin. So, until I see some compelling clinical trials, I would NOT rub it on anything but healthy skin (for example, if your skin is red, itching, burning, stinging or painful- hold off for now).

Brands I am Loving:

Lord Jones 

Plant Juice Oils (founders are personal friends of mine!)

Dr. Whitney

 

 

It’s not a substitute for wearing sunscreen, but this tasty meal plan can help protect you against the sun from the inside out. Skip the bagels, toast, croissants, muffins, and other carb-loaded breakfast items. These foods are high on the glycemic index, which means they’re rapidly digested and turned into blood sugar, says dermatologist Whitney Bowe, MD, author of The Beauty of Dirty Skin. “High glycemic index foods are not skin-friendly,” she says. “They promote the release of an insulin-like hormone called IGF-1 (insulin-like growth factor 1), which works to reproduce and regenerate cells. But if you have too much of it, it can work against you by fueling the biological cascades that ramp up inflammation and lead to certain diseases, such as cancer, and skin disorders, such as acne.” Steel-cut oats can be a healthier breakfast choice, because it’s a low-GI food, she says. Other studies have also shown that whole grains such as oats are cancer-fighting. Here are more proven foods to help prevent cancer.

The Facts:

MEN are about two times more likely than women to develop skin cancer.

WOMEN are more likely to check their own skin for potential irregularities and are more likely to visit their doctor for skin screens to detect skin cancer.

In my practice, I have repeatedly detected melanoma in male patients who have come to my office at the urging of their wives who spotted a suspicious mole!!

With Father’s Day fresh in our minds and hearts, I wanted to empower my ladies with the key tips I shared on GMA to keep the guy you love sun safe and healthy:

Video 1: Detecting the Warning Signs of Melanoma

Starting at 3:19, I review the “A, B, C, D, and Es” for EARLY DETECTION of melanoma. Early detection is critical for the best possible outcome.

Video 2: Understanding Sunscreen

Starting at 2:15, I discuss how to properly apply sunscreen and what SPF really stands for! What you see will definitely surprise you!

These tips will help guide you over the warm summer months!! Enjoy the beautiful weather and Happy Father’s Day!

xoxo,

Dr. Whitney

@DrWhitneyBowe

Instagram

Sign up to get FREE ACCESS to my exclusive BOWE GLOW BOOTCAMP e-book to JUMP START YOUR HEALTHY GLOW TODAY!

This site offers health, wellness, fitness and nutritional information for educational purposes only. The information on this website is NOT intended to replace a one-on-one relationship with a qualified health care professional and is not intended as medical advice.

© 2019 - Dr. Whitney Bowe

Terms of Use

Join my email community

Become a Bowe Glow Insider! Sign up to have access to exclusive news, VIP product giveaways and events, and early access to glowing skin tips and videos!

GET FREE ACCESS! Sign up to GET FREE access to my E-BOOK with my FAVORITE sunscreens to use this summer!