Eczema is a common skin condition that can be triggered by certain foods. Studies have shown that infants and children are particularly susceptible to flare-ups caused by certain foods. Peanuts, milk, soy, wheat, fish and eggs are the most common culprits. If you suspect that one of these foods is causing your eczema, it is important to talk to a pediatrician or dermatologist before eliminating them from your diet. In addition to the foods that are known to cause eczema flare-ups, there are also two diets that may help reduce symptoms.
The dyshidrotic diet is specifically designed for people with dyshidrotic eczema, while the elimination diet can help those who do not know what the triggers of their eczema are. The elimination diet involves eliminating specific foods or food groups from your diet for at least three days to see if your outbreaks decrease. In addition to the foods that trigger eczema, there are also certain inflammatory foods that can lead to increased symptoms. These include added artificial sugars, trans fats, processed meat, red meat, refined carbohydrates and dairy products. The most common sources of allergic reactions are milk, eggs, peanuts, fish, soy, wheat, gluten, citrus and chocolate. It is also worth noting that people with eczema often have an impaired ability to metabolize essential fats.
To ensure you are getting enough essential fats in your diet, it is recommended to eat at least 250 mg of omega-3 fatty acids daily. Additionally, zinc and vitamin C can help reduce inflammation and improve skin health. Zinc can be found in seafood, pumpkin seeds and dark chocolate, while vitamin C is found in brightly colored fruits and vegetables. If you suspect that food allergies are causing your eczema flare-ups, it is important to talk to a doctor before eliminating any foods from your diet. For immediate type reactions, a blood test or skin prick test will identify IgE antibodies to a particular food.
For adults with severe eczema who have negative blood tests for food allergies, it may be beneficial to try eliminating individual foods for 4-6 weeks to see if it reduces outbreaks. Ultimately, everyone is different and discovering their personal food needs is important to minimize the problems of allergies and eczema. If you suspect that food allergies are causing your eczema flare-ups, it is important to talk to a doctor before eliminating any foods from your diet.