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Psoriasis is a skin disorder that affects up to 3% of the world’s population. Although it can affect anyone, it is most common among people who are middle-aged or elderly. Psoriasis typically appears as scaly red patches with silver scales on the elbows, knees, scalp, lower back, and face. It can also occur around nails, between fingers and toes, genitals area, and buttocks. While psoriasis cannot be cured, there are several medications available that treat this disease. If you or someone you know has been diagnosed with this condition, they should consult their doctor before trying alternative methods to treat psoriasis. Here is the detailed discussion about psoriasis and diet to follow:
What is psoriasis?
Psoriasis is a chronic disease that results in thick, red areas of skin covered by flaky white scales. It frequently appears on the elbows and knees but can be found anywhere on your body. When scales are shed from affected areas, they may cause bleeding. Psoriasis causes pain and irritation for many people and affects both males and females equally, although young adults tend to develop it more than children or older adults. The severity of psoriasis varies among individuals and throughout different stages in life. In addition to impacting the appearance of the skin, there are other potential health complications, including arthritis, heart disease, reduced blood flow to limbs, diabetes, obesity, depression, anxiety, schizophrenia, sleep problems, and high blood pressure.
What are the causes of psoriasis?
The exact cause of psoriasis is unknown, but recent research suggests that genetics play a key role in its development. An immune system malfunction can lead to inflammation and excess production of cells called keratinocytes which trigger scaling. Infections including HIV/AIDS may also trigger psoriasis. Severe burns other than third-degree 5% TCA chemical peels or other inflammatory insults like guttate psoriasis or plaque-type autoimmune diseases like systemic lupus erythematosus may predispose patients to develop psoriasis. Some medications such as beta-blockers and lithium may also trigger psoriasis in patients with a history of this disease.
What are the symptoms of psoriasis?
Although psoriasis comes in many different forms, the most common symptoms of this condition include:
Skin lesions vary depending on severity. This includes thickened plaques with silver scales appearing on the scalp, elbows, knees, lower spine, and other areas.
*Redness* Scales can be shiny or dull red patches raised above the skin’s surface.
*Swelling* Lesions can often ooze or bleed, causing swelling and pain.
*Itching* Psoriatic skin is frequently itchy and irritated, sometimes to the point of being painful in rare cases. When psoriasis affects your nails, it’s known as pitting or spoon nails. This is a cosmetic issue that typically leads to the breakdown of the nail bed.
*Thickening and tearing* Over time, psoriatic skin can become thick and leathery-looking in severe cases.
How is psoriasis diagnosed?
To diagnosis a condition, a doctor must perform a physical exam, examine the patient’s medical history and order a series of tests. The doctor will examine the individual’s skin for signs of redness, scaling, oozing, or bleeding and look for characteristic nail changes in those who have psoriatic nails. In addition, a doctor may take a small sample from an affected area to determine if there is indeed psoriasis or another condition that has similar symptoms. This can be done through a biopsy which involves removing small pieces of skin from the body and examining them under a microscope. Additionally, blood tests are often performed to assess risk factors such as diabetes and arthritis that accompany psoriasis.
Treatment options for psoriasis:
Several treatments are available for this condition, including topical creams, lotions, or ointments that are applied directly to the skin, phototherapy (ultraviolet light therapy), and systemic medications.
*Topical psoriasis medications* These creams, lotions, or ointments help reduce scaling and inflammation by slowing down skin cell turnover. They can be very beneficial for mild cases of psoriasis but may not work as well on thickened plaques that often occur in more severe cases.
**Topical corticosteroids* In most cases, creams containing hydrocortisone or a similar steroid are recommended. These can be used on most body parts except areas with broken skin, such as psoriatic lesions and plaques, because they weaken the skin’s ability to protect itself from infection.
*Retinoids* This class of medication is related to Vitamin A and includes retinol and tazarotene. They have been shown to help keep skin cells from growing too quickly, resulting in less scaling and shedding, which means fewer visible symptoms of psoriasis.
*Salicylic acid* This topical treatment contains a form of aspirin known for its anti-inflammatory effects when applied directly to the skin at high concentrations. It also helps by breaking down thickened patches of psoriatic skin to make it easier for other treatments to work.
*Coal tar* Coal tar contains a compound called psoralen, which has been shown in lab studies to stop the growth of skin cells and reduce inflammation. When applied directly to the skin, coal tar products can help moderate eczema and minimize redness.
What foods should you avoid if you have psoriasis?
There is no specific food that causes psoriasis, although some people may find that avoiding certain foods improves their condition.
1) Foods high in fat: These include dairy products, eggs, meat, and fried food. While it’s not clear whether dietary fat worsens or triggers psoriasis, there is evidence that reducing the amount of fat one consumes can improve the condition. Even so, it’s recommended to limit saturated fats from sources such as red meat, dairy, and egg yolks while keeping unsaturated fatty acids such as those found in olive oil and fish to a minimum.
2) Alcohol: Recent research indicates that alcohol can worsen psoriasis symptoms, so it may be best to avoid drinking alcohol when possible.
3) Sugary foods: These should be limited since studies suggest that high-sugar diets contribute to the development of psoriatic arthritis and aggravate conditions like obesity and diabetes, which are risk factors for this condition.
4) Caffeinated drinks: Although coffee has been shown in some studies to improve psoriasis, tea, soda, and energy drinks typically contain caffeine which is known to cause both physical and psychological stress, which worsens psoriasis.
5) Some spices: Capsaicin found in chili peppers and paprika can cause irritation and redness in some people and may worsen psoriasis symptoms. If you’re unsure, it’s best to avoid these spices when possible until you know how they affect your condition.
The best diet for psoriasis patients:
A balanced diet is best when it comes to psoriasis. Although there are no special foods that treat the condition, eating various nutritious foods can help keep you in good health overall. Avoid processed foods and eat more fruits, vegetables, fiber, lean meats, and healthy fats. Get plenty of exercises every day but don’t overdo it. If you find yourself getting too tired or winded when walking upstairs or doing other activities, you may need to adjust your routine until you build up your stamina again. Here is the list of food items you can add to your diet:
*Protein* Protein is an essential building block for healthy skin, so it’s important not to cut back on this nutrient. It’s recommended to eat lean cuts of beef and pork, poultry without the skin, fish, eggs, and tofu since they contain essential amino acids which your body needs to produce new skin cells.
*Carbohydrates/starches* include wheat, rice, oats, and potatoes; starchy vegetables such as yams; whole-grain bread; pasta; legumes (beans), and fruits like apples and bananas oranges. These foods provide vitamins and fiber that can help keep you healthy since they’re digested slowly to fuel the body over some time.
*Fats and oils* Omega-3 fatty acids, found in some fish, including salmon, tuna, and trout, can help keep skin cells from growing too quickly, while linoleic acid can reduce inflammation. Avoiding saturated fats from sources such as red meat, dairy, and egg yolks while keeping unsaturated fatty acids such as those found in olive oil and fish to a minimum is recommended.
*Beverages* While it’s best to limit caffeinated drinks such as coffee, tea, and soda since they contain a substance that can cause physical and psychological stress, having a glass of water or non-caffeinated herbal tea when you need relief is fine. Gently pat dry your skin with a clean, soft towel before applying moisturizer to help lock in the moisture. It would help if you asked your doctor about using moisturizers that can reduce inflammation and itching.
*Fruits and vegetables* These include broccoli; carrots; cucumbers; lettuce, and others like tomatoes, watermelon, and bananas which contain antioxidants like Vitamin C. Eating plenty of these foods will give you the minerals iron, potassium, and magnesium as well as lots of other antioxidants which strengthen your skin from within so it’s less susceptible to the effects of inflammation.
With a well-balanced diet full of healthy nutrients, you can maintain overall health and promote skin healing to reduce symptoms associated with psoriasis.
Although there’s no scientifically proven diet for psoriasis patients, following a balanced, low-fat diet can be helpful when it comes to managing this condition. In addition to eating a variety of nutritious foods, you should also get plenty of exercise since being active helps the body eliminate toxins that may worsen symptoms.
Before starting any new diet or exercise program, speak with your doctor for dietary recommendations to suit your condition’s needs.
What are the other natural tips to follow if you have psoriasis?
Psoriasis is a chronic autoimmune disease that affects the skin and joints. If you have psoriasis, making simple lifestyle changes can help treat and manage the symptoms. Here are some tips:
*If psoriasis covers your nails, wear rubber gloves when doing household chores such as washing dishes or scrubbing floors to avoid skin irritation. *Avoid hot water when bathing or washing your hands since it can dry out your skin. Try to let the water run until it feels comfortably warm.
*Decrease stress as much as possible by taking up a relaxing hobby such as reading or learning to play an instrument. If you are depressed, speak with your doctor about ways to cope with this condition emotionally.
*Use sunscreen every day even if you’re not going outside to prevent sunburns that can cause more inflammation and discoloration of the skin. Wear gloves when gardening or any other outdoor activity to protect your hands from becoming red and scaly.
*Get enough sleep every night to have enough energy for daily activities, including exercise routines that can help boost your mood and improve circulation.
Psoriasis has many effective treatments available now. Depending on how severe your symptoms are, the type of psoriasis you have, as well as any other health concerns, your skin doctor can determine which medications you should use. You can consider taking homeopathic medicine for psoriasis.
Benefits of homeopathy in psoriasis treatment:
- A natural and safe option for skin complaints
- Effective in the long-term without any side effects
- Less expensive than conventional medicine
- Good choice of treatment for patients with sensitive skin or allergiesNitricumAcidum
- Homeopathic remedies don’t interact with other medications and treatments you may be using at the same time.
What are the homeopathic medicines to use for psoriasis?
Homeopathy can prove effective in treating skin conditions, including psoriasis. The following homeopathic remedies are used more commonly for curing psoriasis:
Carcinosin is a popular psoriasis medicine that treats this condition from the root cause by stimulating the body’s internal mechanisms to promote natural healing.
– Sulphur helps relieve itching and burning due to dryness or rough patches on the skin. It also reduces scaling on the scalp where dandruff or cradle cap may be causing irritation or infection on your pores.
– Arsenicum album treats psoriasis that causes itching, pain, burning, discomfort, or swelling. This homeopathic medicine works well on skin covered with red patches where cracks are likely to appear on your elbows and knees.
– Graphites are for skin conditions, including psoriasis, where there’s a loss of hair or bald spots where the epidermis becomes wrinkled and scaly. It also helps reduce pus formation along with oozing from your lesions which can cause the secondary infection.
– Treats psoriasis symptoms such as bright red lesions covering the entire body that are sensitive to touch. At first, the affected area may be itchy and turn into crusty sores filled with fluids meant for elimination through your pores.
There are no known dangerous side effects of taking homeopathy, although it’s important to take medicines under the guidance of a trained homeopath. If you’re not sure how much to use, contact your homeopathy doctor immediately for assistance. For conditions affecting the skin, your health care practitioner may recommend one or more oral doses weekly or as needed until symptoms subside, then taper off gradually. If you are seeking homeopathic treatment, you can book an appointment through OHO Homeopathy.