Palmoplantar psoriasis is a chronic disorder affecting the skin, it is characterised by deep leisons of the skin most commonly on the hands and feet. This condition can be painful and occasionally the lesions will bleed. It will begin as a common dermatitis or psoratic scaly patch of red skin and worsen to thickening of the skin before the lesions appear when it is in its chronic manifestation. It can also worsen into a condition called palmoplantar pustulosis where the appearance of pustules occur on the skin.
Psoriasis conditions are related to hypersensitive immune system function so this underlying cause needs to be addressed for results and healing to be achieved.
Diet tips for skin healing
- Ensure adequate hydration to help keep the skin moisturised and supple. Dehydration leads to the skin becoming dry and scaly
- Increase oily foods in your diet to provide better moisture to the skin and a barrier to help soothe irritations - raw unheated olive oil, flaxseed oil, nuts, fish and avocados
- Reduce inflammation within the body by alkalising the blood. Foods which are alkaline are sprouts, fish, miso soup, sprouts, nuts and seeds, millet, vegetable broths and juices, water, lemon juice and green barley powder. Reduce inflammation causing/ heating foods such as wheat, sugar, dairy, alcohol, soft drinks, preservatives, processed and refined foods and red meat.
Lifestyle factors for skin healing
- Use fragrance free moisturisers, shampoos, creams, soaps and deodorants (especially because the rash is present under the arms). The common irritants to the skin contained in most body and face care products are sodium lauryl sulphate or any of its derivatives, benzenes, petroleum based products, aluminium, chlorhexidine, dioxins, Ethylenediamide tetraacetic acid (EDTA), parabens and hydrazines
- See a dermatologist to determine cause of what you are reacting to or have an blood and/ or allergy test
- This condition is worsened by habits such as smoking, if you are a smoker consider quitting
Natural remedies for skin healing
- The minerals Silica and Calcium fluoride are important for the integrity and strength of the connective tissue, collagen and elastin and will help the lesions to heal
- Zinc is imperative for skin wound healing and should be taken any time there is a chronic skin condition present. Zinc is a mineral which is commonly deficient in cases of low immunity and skin inflammation
- Vitamin C and Bioflavinoids will help to improve the integrity of the connective tissues, reduce inflammation and provide better wound healing
- Deficiencies of essential fatty acids will cause the skin to dry and flake as well as increase your susceptibility of skin conditions. Consider taking a fish oil supplementation to build levels of essential fatty acids to help moisturise the skin. Eating more foods containing beneficial oils such as fish, seafood, nuts and seeds, pumpkin seeds, flaxseeds and avocados is also recommended
- Take a soothing bath. Put some chamomile and oats in a muslin cloth or stocking and tie it over the bath tap and let the warm bath water run through it. Chamomile is very calming to the skin and oats contain mucopolysaccharides which are anti-pruritic to soothe and heal the skin
- Aqueous based creams (water based, non-perfumed) with herbs added such as calendula, lavender, aloe vera, chickweed, comfrey, golden seal, rose hips, vitamin E when massaged into the affected areas will provide healing benefits direct to the area and help the skin to heal
- People with inflammatory skin conditions are usually deficient in anti-oxidants such as Zinc, Vitamin C, Vitamin A, Vitamin E and Selenium
For further information please see the Ask a Naturopath.com webpage concerning psoriasis