Psoriasis diet

• Proper dietary construction can reduce your tendency for psoriatic eruption. But how do you properly construct a basic diet to meet your needs? Begin by being certain to eat a diet that provides the proper macronutrient framework. Your basic dietary needs will consist of sufficient high-quality lean protein to provide a minimum of 1/2 gram of protein for every pound of your lean body mass. High-quality protein should make up about 30% of your day's calorie needs. Another 40% should be carbohydrate, coming mostly from high-fiber, low-starch fruits and vegetables, and the final 30% should come from fats and oils (20% monounsaturated and polyunsaturated oils such as olive oil, canola oil, safflower and sunflower oil, and 10% saturated fats of animal origin).

• Psoriasis dietYour body needs a steady supply of essential fatty acids that it can use as raw materials to produce prostaglandin messengers. Recommendation: To a nutritionally sound basic diet, add gamma-linoleic acid (GLA) and EPA fish oil in a ratio of 1:4 (GLA:EPA) 1 to 3 times daily. The EicoPro essential fatty acid product manufactured by Eicotec, Inc., of Marblehead, Massachusetts, contains ultrapure sources of linoleic acid and fish oils already combined in the proper ratio. If you cannot get that product, you can purchase linoleic acid in a product called evening primrose oil at most health and nutrition stores, and EPA fish oil as well. Because it is not as pure a form, the milligram dosing will be different. You can make a reasonable substitute by combining evening primrose oil capsules with fish oil capsules plus vitamin E. Take 500 mg of evening primrose oil (a source of linoleic acid in capsule form), plus 1000 mg EPA fish oil, plus 200 IU vitamin E 1 to 3 times a day. (Warning to diabetics: EPA fish oil can cause blood sugar fluctuations in some diabetics. Carefully monitor your blood sugar if you use this supplemental oil and discontinue its use if your blood sugar becomes difficult to control.)

Psoriasis diet: Application of essential fatty acids to your skin can also help to reduce scaling and inflammation. Although you can break open capsules of evening primrose oil and apply the contents to your skin, the oil is somewhat sticky. A product called Eicoderm, manufactured by Eicotec, Inc., of Marblehead, Massachusetts, is the only product of which we am aware that provides gamma-linoleic acid (GLA) in a form that absorbs readily into your skin. Recommendation: Apply Eicoderm to the psoriatic rash 2 to 4 times daily.

•  People with psoriasis often have mild deficiency of vitamin A, which may contribute to their skin problems by a means not entirely clear. Because your body can store vitamin A and a buildup of the vitamin can cause toxic symptoms, you should not supplement with excess vitamin A. Your body can produce active vitamin A from its nontoxic relative, beta-carotene, however, and this gives you a means to prevent deficiency safely. Recommendation: Take 25,000 IU of beta-carotene daily. If you have diabetes, do not use this supplement.

• Exposure to sunlight (or to the ultraviolet B irradiation in sunlight) has long been known to clear the rash in psoriasis. Dermatologists frequently prescribe ultraviolet light (sunbed) therapy for their patients with severe psoriasis. Recent research suggests that the sunlight helps because it stimulates your skin to produce vitamin D, and that it is actually an increase in vitamin D which alleviates the rash. Recommendation: In mild cases of psoriasis, 1 would recommend you get outdoors for a minimum of 30 minutes to 1 hour each day in sunny weather. Do not burn your skin, just spend a little time outdoors each day in the sunlight.

• Psoriasis diet: Your body must have selenium to make its own natural antioxidant, glutathione peroxidase. This potent antioxidant helps to curb your body's production of some of the inflammatory eicosinoid messengers that worsen your rash. Recommendation: Take selenium aspartate in a dose of 100 to 200 micrograms per day.

• Psoriasis dietEarly research into the nutritional factors that might help people suffering with psoriasis showed lecithin gave some relief. Recommendation: Take soy lecithin granules in a dose of 3 grams per day.

• Psoriasis diet: Vitamin E neutralizes free radicals that damage the skin. Recommendation: 400 to 1200 IU daily. Use an emulsion form for easier assimilation.

• Although further research needs to be done, studies show that shark cartilage is effective in treating psoriasis, without the toxicity of standard drugs. It seems to inhibit the growth of blood vessels to stop the spread of the disorder. Itching and scaling clear first, then redness gradually fades. Recommendation: Talk to your doctor first, but should you decide to try this technique, take 1 gram per 15 pounds of body weight daily, divided into 3 doses. Allow 2 to 3 months to see results.

• Carrot juice combined with a small amount of green vegetable juice contains an abundance of valuable nutrients. Recommendation: Drink 8 to 16 ounces of this combination daily.

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