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Psoriasis is a chronic, inflammatory skin condition which involves hyperproliferation (over productio) of skin cells, which leads to an appearance of scaly, dry, flaky, thickened patches (termed plaques) or small, round, fluid-filled sacs (termed pustular) on the skin. These areas are often itchy & swollen & may involve the skin, nails, scalp and joints. The two main groups of psoriasis are:

  • Psoriasis vulgaris: dry, scaly ‘plaque’ patches. The patches are common on the backs of elbows and front of the knees & back.
  • Psoriasis pustulosa: smaller, pus-filled patches found on the palms of the hands or soles of the feet. There may also be a fever present.

The exact cause of Psoriasis is unknown however a significant proportion of psoriasis sufferers have a sensitivity to ‘gliadin’ (found in gluten grains) so a gluten free diet has been found to dramatically improve symptoms.

Naturopathic treatment of psoriasis includes:

  1. Ensuring plenty of essential fats – Omega 3 is particularly important as it is anti-inflammatory, supports the nervous system and tends to be lacking in most people’s diet.
  2. Vitamin D – this nutrient assists to decrease the hyper-proliferation (or over-production of cells).
  3. Reducing Stress levels – this includes emotional & mental stress. It may be helpful to support the nervous system with nutrients such as magnesium & B vitamins and herbs such as Withania, Rhodiola, Passionflower or Siberian Ginseng.
  4. Assist the skin to heal – nutrients such as Zinc, Vitamin C and Rutin will support the healing process.
  5. Vitamin A – this nutrient also assists over production of skin cells & assists immune function.
  6. Topical treatment with soothing washes such as goat milk soaps or Natralia Eczema & Psoriasis Wash followed by a soothing herbal based cream such as Emu Fire’s Eczema & Psoriasis cream or Graham's Psoriasis & Eczema cream twice daily.

Natural management of psoriasis is ideal as steroidal creams often thin the skin & symptoms often flare once users stop applying.

Research Update - June 2011

Xhu, K et al (2011), ‘Smoking and Psoriasis: a meta-analysis of case-control studies’, Journal of Dermatological Science, In Press, Accepted Manuscript, Available online 10 May 2011

These researchers examined around 20 studies on smoking and psoriasis and confirmed that smoking is a strong risk factor for psoriasis, even though the exact mechanisms are unclear. It seems to affect the immune system, which then affects the skin. Those with the condition would probably strongly benefit from quitting smoking.

Vive Health Naturopaths recommend the following products for Psoriasis:

Products Suggested Dosage
1. Grahams Calendulis Plus (120g, 240g)  
2. Grahams Bath Oil (120ml, 250ml)
Grahams Natural Shampoo (250ml)
Grahams Natural Conditioner (250ml)
Grahams Natural Soap (100g)
3. Nutra Life Vitamin D3 1000IU (60 Caps) 1 a day after food
4. Herbs of Gold B Complete Sustained Release (60 Tabs) 1 a day after food
5. Nutra Life Gut Relief (180g)  
6. Herbs of Gold Omega 3 Concentrate  (100 Caps, 200 Caps)  
7. Fusion Stress & Anxiety (30 Tabs, 60 Tabs) 2 tablets x 2 daily
8. Nordic Naturals Arctic Cod Liver Fish Oil (90 soft gels) 3 caps daily after food
9. Emu Fire Eczema and Psoriasis Cream  (75g)  
10. Billy Goat Soap 100g (Plain, Milk & Honey, Lavender, Rose Geranium,  Baby)  
11. Eco Store Laundry Powder Concentrate 1kg (Front Load, Top Load)
12. Eco Store Laundry Liquid (500ml, 1L)
Use for washing clothes.
13. Eco Store Dish Washing Liquid (500mls, 1L) Use when washing dishes.

14. Four Cow Farm Baby Lotion (125ml, 250ml, 485ml)

Four Cow Farm Baby Wash (125ml. 250ml, 485ml)

Four Cow Farm Calendula Remedy (50g, 100g)

Four Cow Farm products
are great for babies, children and adults with sensitive skin

NOTE: Consideration should always be given to individual requirements. Please consider seeing a qualified practitioner before commencing a new treatment protocol or when combining supplements with pharmaceutical medication.

For more information on Psoriasis or to ask a Qualified Naturopath a question  Click Here.

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