If you are suffering from skin inflammation or eczema (also known as dermatitis), you are not alone. Eczema affects about 7 million Canadians and is the most common skin problem in children under the age of 12. If you have tried so many topical cortisone based creams and antihistamine drugs with unsatisfactory results and are looking for a natural cure for eczema, continue reading this post.
What is Eczema?
Eczema or dermatitis is an inflammatory skin condition that is marked by dry, itchy, red, scaly and irritated skin. Eczema can be an acute and fiery rash or a more chronic persistent irritation. In its acute form, the rash emerges suddenly, causing redness and bumps which itch and burn. As this heals, crusts are formed. If the problem continues, the rash becomes chronic, developing dry scales, thickened leathery skin and cracking. Atopic dermatitis is a form of eczema that appears at an early age. It is associated with allergies, hay fever and asthma. In children it appears as diaper rash and cradle cap and it usually improves on its own by the age of four, but sometimes reappears with stress during adolescence and adulthood. The elbow and knee creases, face, hands, and soles of the feet are the most vulnerable areas.
What are the underlying nutritional causes of eczema?
Understanding the underlying nutritional causes of eczema will help you in finding a natural cure for eczema.
-Most cases of chronic eczema are due to an essential fatty acid deficiency due to defective metabolism. This can be caused by a genetically based enzyme deficiency or a diet rich in saturated fats from red meats and pork, and trans-fatty acids in margarine and processed vegetable oils.
–Bottle feeding can trigger eczema as mother’s milk is rich in essential fatty acid while regular cow’s milk contains none.
–Stress usually stimulates eczema.
-Low levels of stomach acid called hypochlorhydria and a condition called “Leaky gut syndrome” in which the intestines become porous and allow particles of undigested food to enter the blood stream, provoking allergic reactions
-Chlorine has been documented to aggravate asthma especially in those children who make frequent use of chlorinated swimming pools.
What is the relation between allergies and eczema?
It has been found that eczema is more common in families with a history of allergies and asthma. Allergies often trigger episodes of eczema, either as a result of direct skin contact with an allergen or from ingesting a food or medication. Eczema may be linked to contact with perfumes, cosmetics, rubber, nickel in jewellery, latex and medicated creams as well as climate changes and infections.
Many cases of eczema have an underlying food allergies and sensitivities, in particular milk, eggs, soy, wheat, peanuts and food additives (preservatives and dyes). Excluding food allergies is an important step, if you are looking for a permanent natural cure for eczema.
Is there a natural cure for eczema?
As a nutritionist, eczema is one of the most common skin conditions I see in my practice. I can also tell from a professional as well as a personal experience, that it can be a disfiguring and markedly uncomfortable skin problem.
Eczema is difficult to control with conventional topical treatments which usually have frustrating or non-lasting effects. Addressing the underlying nutritional or environmental causes is the best way and will provide you with the natural cure for eczema forever.
My 5 top nutritionist-proven natural cures for eczema
1-Identify and eliminate any food allergies or sensitivities– Food Allergy testing is a very accurate way to discover foods that may cause an allergic reaction. You may also follow and elimination diet in which common suspected foods are eliminated to see if you get any relief
2-Add unrefined cold pressed flaxseed oil to your daily diet-use it in smoothies, in salads or any dishes that do not require heating. Flaxseed oil is a source of omega 6 and omega 3 essential fatty acids which are needed for healthy skin
3-Avoid the saturated fat of red meat, or hardened fats such as margarine or shortening which contain trans-fatty acids. These fats interfere with essential fatty acid metabolism exacerbating eczema.
4-Use only hypoallergenic natural soaps, skin creams and detergents and rinse well with water
5-Try this topical natural home remedy for eczema to relieve itching; add 4 parts glycerin, 2 parts rose water and 1 part fresh lemon to make an excellent topical solution for relief of itching.
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- The Canadian Encyclopedia of Natural Medicine, sherry Torkos, BSc Phn
- Encyclopedia of Natural Healing, Zoltan Rona, MD, MSc