ECZEMA.JPG

ECZEMA

FOODS THAT HARM

  • Milk, eggs, nuts, or any other foods that trigger or worsen eczema

    FOODS THAT HEAL

  • Apricots
  • Carrots
  • Mangoes
  • Bananas
  • Squash
  • Green leafy vegetables
  • Legumes
  • Salmon
  • Flaxseed
  • Canola oil
  • Brown rice
  • Wheat germ

    WHO’S AFFECTED

  • An estimated 10 to 20 percent of infants and young children in the U
    S
  • Worldwide, about 7% of people have some form of eczema during their lives
  • Those who have asthma and hay fever
    Eczema is an itchy, scaly rash often caused by sensitivity to foods, certain chemicals, or environmental conditions such as dryness
    The rash is not always a true allergic reaction, but an immune system reaction to a normally harmless substance
    Symptoms can appear anywhere from a few minutes to several hours after exposure to the offending food or substance
    Eczema runs in families, often along with a tendency to develop asthma, hay fever, or hives
    The most common type of eczema is atopic dermatitis; the term “atopic” refers to a personal and family tendency to develop eczema, asthma, or hay fever
    Other types include contact dermatitis, which occurs after a substance damages the skin, and seborrheic eczema, which is better known as dandruff, or greasy, scaly patches on the skin or scalp

    Nutrition Connection

    While some foods may help alleviate eczema, some foods may trigger it
    Note these guidelines: Test for

    Allergies


    Common culprits include eggs, dairy products, seafood, walnuts, and pecans
    Cow’s milk can cause eczema in babies and small children; goat’s milk or soy milk may be better tolerated
    Many children outgrow their sensitivities by the age of six, but others have lifelong recurrences
    Consume more antioxidants
    Dryness may cause eczema by triggering the formation of free radicals and therefore may be countered by antioxidants such as beta-carotene
    Brightly colored fruits and vegetables including apricots, squash, mangoes, carrots, pumpkin, and sweet potatoes are good choices
    Eat foods rich in essential fatty acids
    Foods like vegetable oils, fatty fish, and flaxseed may decrease swelling by helping to generate hormone-like substances called prostaglandins, which reduce inflammation

    QUICK TIP:

  • Drink oolong tea
    Three cups of oolong tea may help relieve the symptoms of eczema
    The polyphenols in the tea suppress allergic responses
  • Get lots of vitamin B6
    Some researchers believe a diet rich in vitamin B6 protects against sensitivity rashes
    Good sources include oily fish, meats, legumes, bananas, brown rice, wheat germ, and leafy green vegetables

    Beyond the Diet

    There are many potential causes of eczema that don’t pertain to food
    Here are some general recommendations to avoid flare-ups: Avoid known triggers
    If your rash becomes worse in either hot or very cold weather, avoid extremes of temperature
    Buy soaps, detergents, and toilet papers that are free of dyes and perfumes
    Evaluate external causes
    Common offenders include nickel, which is often used for making costume jewelry; latex, which is used in household and industrial rubber gloves; woolen clothing; skin care products based on lanolin, the natural oil that is found in wool; and acrylic adhesives, used in applying acrylic nails or in sneakers