What is Scleroderma?

Scleroderma means "hard skin." In this disorder—which probably occurs because the body's immune defenses mistakenly turn on its own tissues—the body lays down layers of fibrous tissue (the same kind of tissue as the scar tissue used to repair wounds) in the skin and sometimes in the internal organs. Most of the time (roughly 80%), the scarring affects only the skin. Another 20% of people, however, may develop problems from scarring in the intestinal tract, the kidney, and the heart. The disorder affects about two to three times more women than men and usually begins in the 30s and 40s. Symptoms include thickening and puffiness of the skin, difficulty swallowing, coughing, and shortness of breath. Scarring in and around the smaller blood vessels causes Raynaud's syndrome in about 90% of people with scleroderma. This same blood vessel scarring can cause kidney and heart problems. If you have scleroderma, you should regularly consult with the physician caring for you, but in addition to the medications your physician may prescribe, nutrition may offer some help.

Scleroderma Herbal remedies

• Aloe is effective in treating a number of various skin disorders. Apply the gel right from the plant directly to the area, or apply a commercial cream.

•  Ointment made from calendula works on skin problems because it is antibacterial, antifungal, anti-inflammatory, and antiviral.

• Gotu kola is an Indian herb that stimulates the regeneration of skin cells and the underlying connective tissue. Use in tincture form.

Dosages may vary, depending on the duration and severity of your symptoms. Follow directions on the package, or consult a qualified herbal practitioner.

What makes Scleroderma worse?

• we could find no mention in the medical literature of any specific nutrient that has been documented to make scleroderma worse. Since the disorder is one of too much fibrous tissue being laid down in tissues and fibrous tissue means basically collagen, the chief protein component of fibrous tissue, and since vitamin C is required for the proper manufacture of collagen, it would seem to make medical sense that you wouldn't want to take in more vitamin C than absolutely that amount essential to prevent deficiency. That should mean an intake in the neighborhood of 60 mg per day. We have no hard science to support this thinking; it is just an intriguing theory.

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Scleroderma diet



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