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Feed Your Face: Summertime Foods to Avoid If You Have Rosacea

By Dr Jessica Wu

Summer means warm temperatures and time spent outdoors, both of which can worsen the redness, flushing, and pimples characteristic of rosacea. In addition, this time of year can be particularly challenging because some of the most popular summertime foods can aggravate rosacea. If you have this condition, try to avoid the following foods:

Barbecue sauces and meat marinades. Nothing signals summer more than a grill fired up for a cookout. However, meat marinades and sauces used in grilling often contain vinegar, pepper, chili powder, and/or soy sauce, and each of these can worsen rosacea. Garlic and onion can also trigger flare-ups in some people with the condition. Try to go easy on these spices and condiments, and consider seasoning your meat with herbs, like rosemary and thyme.

Citrus fruits. Lemonade and citrus-containing fruit salads are refreshing on a hot day, but they can aggravate rosacea as well. Instead, try cranberry juice mixed with sparkling water, or a mixed-berry salad.

Salsa and guacamole. These popular and delicious dips are often served with tortilla chips at picnics and barbecues. Both, however, can cause rosacea to flare up. Salsa is usually spicy, and guacamole is made from avocado, which is naturally high in histamine, a substance that enlarges blood vessels. Skip the guacamole and choose a mild or unspicy salsa (or chopped fresh tomatoes). If tomatoes aggravate your rosacea, try a mango salsa with your chips.

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