Eczema & Dermatitis

Picture of a young woman scratching her itchy arm with allergy rash.

In our experience, the health of your skin can be related to underlying problems with foods, and can respond well to minimising the intake of reactive foods.  

Eczema is also known as dermatitis (literally meaning inflammation of the skin), or atopic dermatitis (AD). Atopic simply means allergic, and often eczema that develops before 6 months may be the first manifestation of allergy. 75% of atopic eczema cases start before the age of 6 months, 90%  before 5 years. In babies, it often starts with itchy, weepy, facial lesions, and can spread to patches anywhere in the body. In children, the most common areas of involvement are the elbow and knee flexures, but also wrists and ankles. In adults, it again can appear anywhere on the body. Often eczema is the first sign of allergy, and many children with early eczema will develop allergic rhinitis (hayfever), asthma or food allergies.

For babies and children, identifying problem foods presents a safe and convenient way to understand factors that may be causing or contributing to skin problems. This is also true of course for adults. The complexity of food reactivities means that sometimes there is not a single food or substance that is causing a problem, but rather an accumulation of more than one that triggers skin complaints. For example, a child may have a reaction to dairy foods that contributes to their poor skin health, but also a slight reactivity to sulphites and strawberries, and when all three are consumed a flare-up ensues. This is why trying to guess and work out food triggers can be such a difficult task!

Getting to the underlying root of the problem is essential for those with skin problems. Nutrient imbalances and deficiencies can contribute significantly to poor skin health, and identifying and treating these is a significant part of any holistic naturopathic treatment.

Understanding underlying imbalances in the body, determining reactivities and potential triggers, and ultimately addressing skin health in a holistic manner can provide relief that is more than just skin-deep.

 

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