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Can Losing Weight Help Psoriasis?

Losing weight can help your psoriasis, and we’re here to explain how and back it up with evidence. If you have psoriasis and a weight problem, a high BMI or love handles that you despise, then this should be all the motivation you need to get a gym membership and cut down on the calories!

Psoriasis Home Remedy #1: Fish Oil
Eating a couple of servings weekly of salmon, albacore tuna, and other fatty fishes that are rich in omega-3 fatty acids may help reduce inflammation, the hallmark of psoriasis. In addition, studies have suggested that patients with psoriasis have an increased risk of cardiovascular diseases. Consuming fatty fishes or taking fish oil supplements can both decrease heart disease risk and improve psoriasis symptoms. Fish oil supplements are available over the counter in capsule form at many food markets and drugstores. Some studies have also found that fish oil can boost the immune system. Psoriasis is an autoimmune disease, so this natural psoriasis treatment could help improve symptoms.
Psoriasis Home Remedy #2: Diet Modification
Multiple studies have suggested that people who have celiac disease may be at higher risk for psoriasis, in part because gluten can cause inflammation, and psoriasis is an inflammatory disease. That connection may explain why some psoriasis patients report that eating a gluten-free diet — which eliminates wheat, barley, and rye — helps them feel better. “Anecdotally, it works,” Weiss says, “but it has never been proven scientifically.” If a gluten-free diet makes your psoriasis feel better, however, that’s great. “There is certainly no danger in trying it,” Weiss adds.

This article will explain how being fat can exacerbate psoriasis symptoms, and how weight loss can improve them, so read on, and remember – no snack breaks allowed!

Flab, Fat Rolls, Love Handles and Psoriasis

Warning: This section might be disturbing. Essentially, losing weight helps psoriasis because it eliminates the extra sweating, chafing and rubbing from flab rolls. Thin people have bodily areas where their skin folds and rubs against itself too, but this is a bigger concern for larger people.

The reason why this aggravates psoriasis is twofold (no pun intended!) Firstly, the rubbing is not good for sore skin, and secondly, the deepened skin folds can create “natural occlusion”, which is problematic. If you haven’t heard of it, it is the same thing as using Saran Wrap, Clingfilm or bandages to cover up cream on psoriatic patches and keep it from evaporating, being wiped off or washed off.

This increases the effectiveness of medication by many folds – but it also increases side effects! For example, if overweight people use highly-potent steroid creams on their psoriasis, it can cause more skin-thinning than on smaller people. Hence, losing weight helps psoriasis because it melts away the fat rolls which worsen it.

Apart from that, larger people also sweat more. This is bad for psoriasis because it can irritate the skin, particularly in moist areas such as in the armpits and the groin area, and also rinse away topical creams, making its treatment difficult.

Psoriasis Home Remedy #3: Turmeric
Some people with psoriasis have found relief with turmeric as a natural psoriasis treatment. Turmeric is part of the ginger family; you’ll find it in foods such as curry powders, mustards, and cheeses. Other supplements that have been tried for psoriasis home remedies include evening primrose oil, milk thistle, and oregano oil, which are available in various forms, including capsules and teas. Though a few people report some success with turmeric and other supplements because of their anti-inflammatory properties, keep in mind that there are no scientific studies to back up these claims, Weiss cautions.
Psoriasis Home Remedy #4: Water
Here’s an easy natural psoriasis treatment you may not have thought of: Drink water. Drinking plain water helps keep you hydrated, and when you have psoriasis, being well hydrated will keep your skin from getting too dry. Your body is up to 60 percent water, and you need to constantly replenish it. Using a humidifier is another easy psoriasis home remedy that will help keep your skin moist, especially in winter.

Overweight Problems Are More Than Skin Deep

Being overweight is also bad for psoriasis because of what is going on inside the fat. Researchers think that the constant, low-level inflammation in fat cells is similar to the inflammation found in the autoimmune disorder that is psoriasis.

For example, researchers have observed elevated levels of TH-1 cytokines in obese patients, which are part and parcel of chronic inflammation. Losing weight can help psoriasis because every pound lost reduces the levels of internal inflammation. In fact, researchers know that weigh loss can decrease amounts of C-reactive proteins, which are produced in response to inflammation.

If you are still unconvinced, here is the evidence stating that gaining weight / being obese is bad for psoriasis! In 2011, the Geisinger Medical Center reported how they observed a dramatic improvement in the psoriasis of two patients who underwent gastric bypass surgery to lose weight. One of the women had a serious case of plaque psoriasis covering 75% of her body, and the other patient had it spread around 50%.

After the surgery, their weight plummeted, and the results were like a psoriasis miracle. The first one had a pre-surgery BMI of 52 kg/m2 that dropped to 34 kg/m2. Guess how much of her body the psoriasis covered a few months later – only 9%!

In terms of other studies, the 2005 research in Archives of Dermatology revealed how obese individuals were twice as likely to develop psoriasis compared to people with a healthy weight. Furthermore, a 2006 study in Medical Hypotheses showed that excess weight also reduced the likelihood of a long-term recovery from psoriasis.

Does losing weight help psoriasis? You can bet your bum on it! Hopefully such research will motivate anyone reading this to try and lead a healthier lifestyle – in return you’ll be slimmer, get fitter and improve your psoriasis. Now, we’re not advocating gastric bypass surgery here, just more diet awareness and exercise!

Psoriasis Home Remedy #5: Aloe Vera
Pure aloe gel is rich in anti-inflammatory and healing compounds, and provides a nice cooling sensation for itchy skin. If you have eczema or psoriasis, consider growing your own aloe plant so you can take the gel straight from its natural source. Pure aloe vera gel can also be found at most drug stores and health food stores.
Psoriasis Home Remedy #6: Flaxseeds
Flaxseeds are packed with omega-3 fatty acids, and they help block a chemical in your body called arachidonic acid which causes inflammation. Grind up a few tablespoons of flaxseed and add to smoothies, oatmeal, granola, or salads. You can also use flaxseed oil as a dressing for salads and veggies.
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