3 Ways: Natural Eczema Relief

Winter is approach­ing, and with it: dry skin. For those of you with eczema or atop­ic dermatit­is, this can be a stress­ful time because it is hard to know what winter will bring for your skin. Will it be bet­ter than last year? Will it be worse? More itchy? Less itchy? To stop those wor­ries in their tracks, here are three really easy things you can do right away to give your­self a jump start on winter relief:

  1. Fish oil.
    People with eczema have a very depleted skin bar­ri­er and so we need more oils than the aver­age per­son; Omega‑3 fish oils at doses of at least 1,200 mg in a 3:1 EPA to DHA ratio. What does this mean? EPA and DHA are two com­pon­ents of essen­tial Omega 3 fatty acids we need. The ratio is import­ant as we need more EPA than DHA to sup­port inflam­ma­tion-reduc­tion, and this is even more cru­cial in adults who have had eczema for a long time. Look for 800 mg dosage in the 3:1 ratio where at least 800 mg is EPA, and the more the bet­ter! And — here’s the catch — you have to take at least 1,600 mg of oil daily (that’s almost 2 grams!) for at least two months to see any changes. 2 months! Seems like forever does­n’t it? So get started…
  2. Probiotics.
    This is a hot top­ic, because every­one’s heard of pro­bi­ot­ics, but many people don’t know which ones to take. Probiotics (bene­fi­cial bac­teria that cre­ate bal­ance in our digest­ive tract) have unique abil­it­ies to sup­port immunity in spe­cif­ic ways. For eczema, research has demon­strated that both in the womb (pren­at­ally) and after birth the key con­sist­ent sup­port­ive bac­teria are bifidobac­teria bifidum, lacto­ba­cil­lus reu­teri, and bifidobac­teri­um lac­tis and lacto­ba­cil­lus plantar­um. If you are tak­ing cap­sules of pro­bi­ot­ics for your eczema that do not have these strains, you are not tak­ing the right ones. And why do you need to take these bac­teria? Immune bal­an­cing, of course!
  3. Cut out dairy products.
    Of all of the foods that aggrav­ate eczema, dairy products are at the top of the list. Dairy products pro­duce inflam­ma­tion, this we know. There is lots of inform­a­tion in research that makes dir­ect links with atop­ic dermatit­is (or eczema) and dairy con­sump­tion con­trib­ut­ing to a worsen­ing of the con­di­tion. In my office I see a 40% reduc­tion in your symp­toms just by cut­ting out dairy. That’s pretty huge, don’t you think? In my humble opin­ion there is not one patient that does not bene­fit from dairy reduc­tion in their diet!

Extra tip: Many pro­bi­ot­ic strains are grown using dairy cul­tures. Make sure you are pur­chas­ing a dairy-free pro­bi­ot­ic if you will be avoid­ing dairy products.

If you have eczema or dermatit­is and you want to know more about these and oth­er meth­ods to get relief, you can always book an appoint­ment with me. Feel free to share this post with your friends and loved ones if you know any­one suf­fer­ing with eczema.

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