Diet has an important role to play in the treatment of psoriasis. If you are one of those suffering from this chronic skin disease, take heart because there are a few simple adjustments you can make in the diet you are consuming which will have a significant beneficial impact on psoriasis.
Try these simple dietary recommendations in addition to any creams and medicines that you may be using, and you will start experiencing greater relief from psoriasis than with mere conventional treatments prescribed by your doctor. However, note that there can be differences in individual responses to some of these diets, so find the one which works best for you by trial and error.
8 Diets To Treat Psoriasis
Gluten is a protein found in wheat, barley and rye. Some cannot digest this protein properly. In such cases, elimination of gluten from the diet can help control the symptoms of psoriasis. However, this can be a tough decision because it means the elimination of breads, cereals and pasta from your diet. Moreover, such a move is helpful only in those sensitive to gluten. So, check with your doctor to see if you are intolerant to gluten.
Low-fat Dairy Products
Substitute whole milk and high-fat cheeses with low-fat versions. This is thought to help by reducing the inflammation associated with psoriasis.
Even if this has a mild effect on psoriasis, it is worth persisting with it because it has the additional benefit of reducing the risk of heart disease to which patients with psoriasis are at greater risk.
Vegetables and Fruits
Some studies have found an inverse relationship between the intake of fresh vegetables and fruits and psoriasis symptoms. Vegetables and fruits are rich in antioxidants, which help control the inflammation. They are also rich in vitamin A, which is essential for healthy skin.
So, increase your consumption of such items as carrots, tomatoes, bell peppers, spinach, apples, papaya, mangoes, watermelon, cantaloupe and berries. Banana, pineapple and citrus fruits like oranges and grapes may not be very helpful. The daily intake of fruits should be about 2-4 servings and that of vegetables about 5 servings.
Whole grains (whole-wheat bread, pasta, cereals, brown rice and oatmeal) are rich in antioxidants, which are anti-inflammatory. You should consume about 4-10 servings per day (one serving is a slice of whole-wheat bread, ¾ cup cereal, 1/3 cup pasta, or 1/3 cup brown rice).
Lentils and Beans
Consume about 1-3 servings/day of lentils, beans, peas or peanuts (1 serving = ½ cup). These, too, contain antioxidants
Soy Milk and Tofu
Soy milk and tofu contain anti-inflammatory substances like isoflavones. Take about 1-2 servings/day (1 serving = 1 cup of soy milk or ½ cup tofu).
Fish and Other Seafood
Fish and seafood are rich in omega-3 fatty acids, which help in reducing the inflammation. You should take about 2-4 servings/week (1 serving = 4-6 ounces). They also confer the additional benefit of protection against heart disease to which patients of psoriasis are more susceptible.
Foods to Limit or Avoid
Limit meats to lean cuts because high-fat cuts increase the inflammation. Sweets contain sugar, which promotes inflammation, so avoid them as far as possible. Alcohol is another of those substances that trigger inflammation, so avoid its consumption to the extent you can. Alcohol can also lead to a dry skin and thus worsen the symptoms of psoriasis.