Eczema is an inflammatory skin condition. Also known as atopic dermatitis, it can cause skin irritation, oozing blisters, and itchy rashes. It can also result in leathery skin patches appearing over time.
Eczema is most common in children younger than age 2, but it can also affect older children and adults. Hereditary and environmental triggers may play a role in developing the condition, but its cause isn’t clearly understood. Many children “grow out” of eczema and experience few to no outbreaks as adults.
Research suggestsTrusted Source that an infant may be less likely to develop eczema if their mother takes probiotics and avoids drinking cow’s milk during pregnancy. Infants who exclusively breastfeed during the first three months of their life are also less likely to develop eczema.
Many people who have eczema are also diagnosed with food allergies. However, everyone is different and discovering your personal food needs is important to minimize issues with allergies and eczema. Not everyone will have issues with the foods listed below, but common food allergies associated with eczema include:
Eating certain foods doesn’t appear to cause eczema, although it may trigger a flare-up if you already have the condition. Maintaining an eczema-friendly diet is key to overall condition management. Not everyone will have the same reactions or flare ups to the same foods.
Below is a list of foods that contain properties that may help decrease eczema flare-ups, but getting to know your body and what foods work best for you individually is key
Eczema is a collective term for a variety of skin inflammation symptoms, including: atopic dermatitis, seborrheic dermatitis, contact dermatitis, scabies or tinea, among which atopic dermatitis occurs most frequently
According to a survey in China, about 12.94% of the total population is affected by atopic skin, and it is most common in children (the prevalence is between 15% and 30%), and it is often accompanied by asthma and allergic rhinitis, and may persist To adulthood.
Although eczema is not life-threatening, the intense itching and red and swollen appearance often seriously affect the quality of life of patients and their families, and impose huge social, personal, emotional and medical burdens.
Causes of eczema (atopic dermatitis)
For a long time, atopic dermatitis has been considered to be caused by abnormal keratinocytes, but in the past 20 years, it has been discovered by the medical profession that it is mainly related to abnormal immune and inflammatory responses caused by genetic and environmental factors (eating habits, hygiene habits, pollution sources)
What are the health foods beneficial for eczema (atopic dermatitis)?
Vitamin D (Vitamin D)
Vitamin D is a fat-soluble vitamin. It can be used as a pleiotropic hormone in the human body. It was first discovered to promote the absorption of minerals such as calcium, iron, magnesium, phosphate and zinc, and prevent rickets and osteomalacia.
Without the presence of vitamin D, only about 10-15% of dietary calcium can be absorbed. Recently, the medical profession believes that vitamin D deficiency (25(OH)D less than 20 ng/mL) is very common, with about 53.2 in China. % Of the population is in a state of deficiency. In addition to affecting bone health, it is also related to autoimmune diseases, cancer, metabolic syndrome, cardiovascular diseases, infections, and all-cause mortality. Note 1
A comprehensive analysis of literature (including 11 studies) pointed out that compared with healthy people, the 25(OH)D level in the blood of patients with atopic dermatitis (eczema) is lower, especially in children. Note 2
In addition, the same study also pointed out that compared with placebo, vitamin D supplementation has the effect of reducing the severity of atopic dermatitis and improving clinical symptoms (eczema area and severity index/EASI and atopic eczema score /SCORAD measurement)
＊Comment: Vitamin D has a positive effect on the prevention and treatment of atopic dermatitis (eczema), and more large-scale clinical trials are still needed to confirm its efficacy.
There are more than 10 trillion bacterial organisms colonized in the human intestine, which is about 10 times the total number of body cells. The bacterial genome contained is 100 times the total number of human genes, which has a profound impact on human health.
These flora are also divided into good bacteria and bad bacteria. Good bacteria can also be called probiotics, which can promote health by regulating the intestinal immune system and eliminating potential pathogenic bacteria.
A document meta-analysis (including 8 studies) pointed out that the use of synbiotics (Synbiotics, a mixture of probiotics and probiotics) can help treat atopic dermatitis (eczema), and especially Mixed strains and children over one year old are the most effective. Note 1
Another literature meta-analysis (including 16 randomized controlled trials) pointed out that, regardless of whether it is a high-risk group of allergy, continuous use of probiotics during pregnancy to postpartum can prevent atopic dermatitis (eczema). It has a positive effect (can reduce the risk of occurrence by about 39%), and the mixed strain (Lactobacillus plus Bifidobacterium) is the most protective. Note 2
＊Comment: The use of probiotics may have preventive and therapeutic effects on atopic dermatitis (eczema), but considering the heterogeneity of the research included, more large-scale experiments are needed for further verification
Omega-3 (fish oil)
Yijin research has found that Omega-3 polyunsaturated fatty acids are the most important essential fatty acids in the human diet and an important component in cell membranes. They are responsible for regulating inflammation. Especially EPA and DHA can be used most efficiently and have the most biological value.
However, it is a pity that the current Westernized diet is the easiest to ignore the intake of these good fats. The lack of Omega-3 polyunsaturated fatty acids is often associated with cardiovascular disease, rheumatoid arthritis, inflammatory bowel disease, bipolar disorder, and cognitive dysfunction. related. Note 1
Can Early Omega-3 Fatty Acid Exposure Reduce Risk of Childhood Allergic Disease?
A systematic literature review and meta-analysis (including 20 studies) pointed out that increasing the intake of fish or Omega-3 unsaturated fatty acids in pregnant women before childbirth can help reduce the offspring suffering from atopic eczema and skin pimples The probability of a skin-prick test, allergy to eggs, and allergy to any food. Note 2
＊Comment: Increasing the consumption of fish or Omega-3 unsaturated fatty acids during pregnancy can reduce neonatal allergy-related events (such as atopic eczema or food allergy), but considering the heterogeneity of the included studies, more large studies are still needed Further verification
The bottom line
Many triggers might bring on eczema-related symptoms, including what you eat. There isn’t a single diet that eliminates eczema in everyone, but a good rule of thumb is to avoid any foods that seem to make your symptoms worse.
Focus on a healthy diet filled with fresh fruits and vegetables, healthy fats, and lean protein. This may help you to stave off some — or even all — of your eczema flare-ups.
If you’re planning to become pregnant and eczema runs in your family, talk with your doctor. They can go over any preventive measures you can take to reduce your infant’s risk of developing the condition.