No one diet fits all. Some people consume meat and some go vegan. There is no right or wrong as long as you listen to your body and avoid foods that trigger flare-ups. I am allergic to gluten, nuts, yeast, buckwheat and shellfish so my diet is completely free from them.
I went vegan for a month at the beginning of TSW. Due to my dietary restrictions, it was challenging to maintain a vegan diet. When I re-introduced white meat in my diet, my skin didn’t have any bad reaction. However, I do realize that excess red meat consumption, like after a Korean BBQ meal, makes my skin itchy. If you are not sure about which are your food triggers, try an elimination diet to find out. Identifying these triggers can help you find the diet that fits you the most.
My current diet mainly consists of fresh, whole foods. I avoid red meat and processed foods as they are associated with a higher level of inflammatory markers. I also eliminated dairy products and eggs due to their inflammatory properties. I consume chicken, salmon, vegan protein powder and tofu as my major protein sources. Lately, I have been having a low carb diet, replacing high carb sources, such as rice and gluten-free pasta, with quinoa, cauliflower rice and zucchini noodles.
In order to fully heal our skin, we need to heal our gut. Eczema/TSW is highly correlated with an imbalance of gut microbiome and leaky gut. Gut bacteria are essential for a healthy immune system. Imbalances in the gut microbiota may dysregulate immune responses and lead to the development of chronic inflammatory and autoimmune dysfunctions. A gluten and dairy-free diet is recommended to people with gut sensitivity and IBS to prevent gut inflammation and heal the gut naturally.
INFLAMMATORY FOODS THAT I ELIMINATED
- Dairy: milk, cheeses
- Gluten: bread, pasta, wheat flour, barley, rye, oats
- Nightshades vegetables: white potatoes, tomatoes, eggplant, bell peppers
- Baked goods: cakes, muffins, pies, pastries, pizza
- Deep-fried foods
- Soda and other sugar-sweetened beverages
- Refined oils: canola, sunflower, soybean, safflower oils
*I also eliminated shellfish, mango and kiwifruit as adviced by my previous Eastern doctor.
FOODS THAT I AVOID
- Processed/canned foods
- Red meat and processed meats: cold cuts, deli meats, bacon, hot dogs
- Sugar and sweeteners
- Sauces (I mostly use herbs and spices for seasoning)
ANTI-INFLAMMATORY FOODS THAT I RECOMMEND CONSUMING
- A variety of fresh, colourful vegetables and fruits: leafy greens and low-sugar fruits such as berries (especially those high in fiber and antioxidant)
- Seeds: chia seeds, hemp seeds, flaxseeds
- Healthy fats (omega-3 fatty acid): avocado, avocado oil for cooking, fatty fish like salmon, nuts and seeds
- Mushrooms: I highly recommend Four Sigmatic mushroom products for immune boost and relaxation
- Ginger and turmeric
- Probiotic foods
- Nettle leaf (a natural antihistamine)
- Bone broth (for healing gut-lining and lower gut permeability)
- Cacao powder: the raw and unrefined form of cocoa (antioxidants-packed with a good amount of iron, calcium and magnesium. Also, it is good for alleviating cramps and PMS)
For probiotics and omega-3, I have been taking them consistently for over a year.
Here is a full list of what I have been taking daily recently:
- Apple Cider Vinegar: 2 tbsp with water first thing in the morning (antiviral and antimicrobial properties, promotes healthy gut microbiome)
- Probiotics (healthy gut bacteria) and Prebiotics (food for the probiotics)
- Turmeric Extract: relieves pain and inflammation (the one I consume https://botanicahealth.com/product/turmeric-liquid-extract/)
- Omega-3 Fatty Acid: healthy fats, immune booster
- Vitamin D: anti-inflammatory
- Hemp seed oil: CB2 receptor is the regulator of inflammation and neuropathic pain
- Chaga mushroom tincture: immunomodulator which helps regulate or normalize the immune system (most potent in tincture with alcohol)
- Elderberry tincture: full of antioxidants and boost immune
- Vitamin B12: most common deficiency for people who are gluten-free
I always go for brands that are gluten-free, dairy-free, vegan (if possible), non-GMO and organic. In general, a supplement is going to take 2 to 4 weeks to begin to work, so consistency is key. Supplements aren’t intended to substitute for food. The most effective way to heal naturally is to improve your diet and supplement your diet with dietary supplements. Please advise your doctor before purchasing if you are taking medications.
I hope you would find this beneficial and please feel free to reach out to me through my Instagram @eczemawarriorkc if you have any questions!
Believe in the natural healing power of your body.