Asian Flush Treatments
Sadly, short of some gene therapy (one day!) there are no ‘cures’ to the Asian Flush or ALDH2 Deficiency. Acetaldehyde accumulates so much when drinking alcohol, that it becomes a tough battle to fight. There are some things that can be done to temper your glow and live healthier by reducing acetaldehyde accumulation. The best thing to do is try and limit how much acetaldehyde you’re exposed to within your lifestyle, and hopefully the info on this site makes you a little more savvy when making those decisions.
Many people have heard about the H2-antagonists (anti-histamines) that can reduce Asian Flush. The solution we hear about is taking Pepcid AC before drinking, which is a type of H2-antagonist. There’s an upside to this, and a big downside (of course).
People normally take these because they slow acid production in the stomach, which causes ulcers and heartburn. They also block receptors in the skin that control blood flow, and they reduce the inflammation that causes the red face when drinking (boom!).
The downside, is that these anti-histamines don’t do anything to reduce acetaldehyde, the toxic stuff that’s causing all of the problems. So they might dull the glow, but they won’t do anything for our health. In fact, it isn’t recommended to take Pepcid and drink alcohol, and it can even end up causing stomach ulcers because of an overproduction of acid to compensate.
Looking at the source of the problem is probably the best way to find a solution, and for Asian Flush, we need something that reduces acetaldehyde, the enemy of the ALDH2 Deficient.
Essential AD2 is the only product actually designed for people with ALDH2 Deficiency. It is a health supplement both taken daily and also before drinking alcohol, and it has been clinically validated to defend us from acetaldehyde. Essential AD2 fights Asian Flush by stopping acetaldehyde from accumulating out of control. Delta Nutrassentials is the company that makes it (www.deltanutra.com).
There is another interesting project by Aldea Pharmaceuticals, which is working on a new drug for the ALDH2 enzyme, but it isn’t very clear when this might be available, if ever. What’s more, is that while it may activate the ALDH2 enzyme (the one that normally breaks down acetaldehyde), it is being designed only for people with something called Fanconi Anemia, a serious but very different genetic disorder than ALDH2 Deficiency.
There are a handful of small companies who offer products that claim to get rid of Asian Flush and Asian Glow. They come in a wide variety of forms with a wide variety of ingredients. Unfortunately, they are difficult evaluate, and little information is provided on the science behind the products or clinical validation for why they stop Asian Glow. Many of these products have been tried, unsuccessfully, with no proven winner.
The other issue with these types of products is that they don’t address the problem at the source, meaning they don’t reduce acetaldehyde accumulation. Even if they were to reduce the Asian Glow (or at least provide a nice placebo effect!), they wouldn’t protect your health by stopping acetaldehyde from damaging the body.
While an Asian Glow cure sounds like the greatest option of all, and maybe the greatest thing ever, a cure simply isn’t possible, and people who are saying it is… may not know what they’re talking about. If you’ve got some great info you want to share, please contact us below!