Eczema: Which foods trigger the condition and what can help tackle it
London-based Nutritionist Resource member, Dora Walsh, has shared her top tips on which foods can help you avoid the condition as part of National Eczema Week, running until Friday.
Atopic eczema is the most common form of the condition and it causes the skin to become painfully itchy, red, dry and cracked.
The condition is usually chronic and is usually treated by steroid creams.
Dora believes the right diet is crucial to alleviating eczema and says it is time to ditch the mittens and that creams may not necessarily be the answer to the ‘ordeal of eczema.’
Foods which can reduce eczema include fish, potatoes, berries and apples.
She said: “Mainstream medicine can control eczema by suppressing the symptoms. But nutritional therapy addresses the underlying causes.
“The anti eczema diet focuses on pure natural foods to repair skin, total rehydration and eliminating allergens and which are thought to trigger the condition.
“Milk, wheat, eggs, peanuts, shellfish, soy, chocolate, nuts, strawberries and citrus fruits are the major allergens believed to trigger eczema. The vast majority of people see a marked improvement by removing them from their diet.
“Those not wishing to exclude them all can see a nutritionist for food intolerance test for precise information on the foods they are sensitive to. Those foods are eliminated for at least three months, and then carefully reintroduced.
“The omega 3 fats found in oily fish such as salmon, mackerel, fresh tuna eaten at least three times a week helps reduce inflammation characteristic this condition.
“A small handful of raw nuts and seeds i.e. cashews, hazelnuts, walnuts also provide good fats which are essential for skin health and repair.
“Skin should also be hydrated with at least 1.5 – 2 litres of water a day.
“It can in most cases eradicate, or greatly alleviate the condition, calming and reducing flare-ups, all without steroids.”
Supporting immunity with diet also helps to address eczema symptom because the immune system is often over-reactive in eczema sufferers.
Do this by adding antioxidant-rich foods into your diet, i.e. foods rich in vitamins A, C, E, as well as the minerals selenium and zinc.
Vitamin A/beta carotene: Carrots, sweet potatoes, green leafy vegetables
Vitamin C: Fruits i.e. berries, apples, potatoes, sweet peppers
Vitamin E: Raw nuts and seeds
Selenium rich foods: Brazil nuts, brown rice
Zinc: Fish, raw nuts and seeds
Dora continued by revealing that the condition, commonly thought to flare up in childhood, can continue into adulthood.
She said: “Eczema can affect anyone I see children who scratch themselves raw each night forced to wear mittens and slathered in steroid creams to alleviate their symptoms.
“The creams continue on until adulthood, and I’ve seen top-level city executives embarrassed by their “crocodile” hands at board meetings.
Notes to editors:
Article available for reprint, provided credits and links to Dora’s website, and the Nutritionist Resource are included.
Dora is available for interview or for further quotes. Call the Nutritionist Resource Press Team on 01276 580 047 or email firstname.lastname@example.org
Find a nutritionist dealing with skin health
or try our advanced search