Have you noticed a dry patch of itchy skin somewhere on your body that never seems to heal? If it’s on your scalp, elbows, or knees there’s a good chance you may have an autoimmune condition known as psoriasis. You’re wouldn’t be alone, either, as it affects around 2 percent of the US total population, with about 150,000 new cases annually. There is no cure, unfortunately, but if you have been diagnosed with psoriasis there are some promising treatments available for you, not to mention some lifestyle changes you could implement to help ease the symptoms.
What Is Psoriasis And What Can You Do about It?
Human skin cells generally live about three to four weeks before they naturally die off. Fortunately for you, your body is consistently generating new skin cells to replace them at pretty much the same rate. That is, of course, until your immune system starts tricking your body into creating new skin cells faster than you actually need them. With nowhere to go these new cells start building up on top of each other, leading to scaly and red patches of skin – often dry, itchy and very similar to a rash.
Some studies have shown that diet can play a huge role in curtailing flare-ups and symptoms. Since psoriasis is an inflammatory condition, modifying your eating habits to restrict your intake of certain items can benefit you in the long run. Dairy products, refined sugars, and heavily processed foods are all considered inflammatory foods so you should strongly consider crossing them off your grocery list. Replace them with more Omega-3 fatty acid-rich foods like fish, olive oil, and walnuts.
You should also incorporate more fruits and vegetables, too. One added benefit of a healthier diet is, of course, losing that excess weight. According to research, dropping those extra pounds may actually make the biggest difference of all. In addition to reducing your risk of heart disease (which psoriasis is also linked to), simply being overweight may be diluting the effectiveness of any prescriptions you are taking to combat the disease.
Also, before you drastically change your diet or if you have any questions about new psoriasis treatments, remember to speak with your chosen health provider. He or she will be happy to help guide you along the path to a healthier, happier you!