Nobody is 100% sure what causes eczema. But we do know that when someone has eczema, they also have inflammation lurking somewhere inside the body – often times in the gut.
My son started breaking out with eczema in the first weeks after being born. He still suffers from the sassy rash that often spreads across his entire body.
In my last few weeks of being pregnant with him, my OBGYN prescribed an antibiotic for an infection I guess I had. Sometimes I wonder if the antibiotics have anything to do with him having eczema. If I knew then what I know now – I would have refused to take them. They basically wiped out all the beneficial bacteria in my gut and my son’s.
I also read in the Daily Telegraph, that giving your baby antibiotics within the first year of life increases their risk of developing eczema by 40%. So, how can they be safe to take while you’re nine months pregnant?
Throughout all my research, I’ve found a pretty extensive list of things that could be causing the nasty eczema flare ups.
Common Eczema Culprits
- Food Allergies (Wheat/Gluten, Dairy, Nuts, Soy, Etc.)
- Food Additives, Preservatives, Artificial Colors, Etc.
- Nutrient Deficiencies (Especially Essential Fatty Acids, Vitamins & Minerals)
- Leaky Gut Syndrome
- Antibiotics and Vaccines
- Dust, Pollen, Mold, Pet Dander, Smoke, Pollution
- Contact With Harsh Chemicals in Conventionally Bought Soap or Laundry Detergents, Bubble Bath, etc.
- Wool, Synthetic Fibers, Fire Retardants
- Low Humidity In The Air
As for natural remedies, eating a healthy diet should be first and foremost. Limiting processed foods is key. That way you’ll also be eating much less toxins like preservatives, food dyes, sugar, artificial sweeteners, nitrates, GMOs among many others.
Believe me, I know eating this way all the time is hard. In fact, sometimes it seems nearly impossible when your kids are in daycare, your husband sneaks a trip to McDonald’s on his day off and so many food options lining the grocery stores are junk.
Getting yourself or your child tested for food allergies is also a good place to start. The test may very well help you figure out what is causing the inflammation. It’s surprising, but some people are even allergic to citrus foods or nightshades. You just never know.
An elimination diet can also help determine whether food allergens are to blame. In fact, if it’s done right – it’s a more accurate measure and you can do it yourself at home. Dr. Mercola says that most of his patients dealing with eczema take out the wheat and are magically healed. Our wheat just isn’t the same as it was years ago. These days it seems almost everyone should eat gluten-free.
Do your best with food. Then you can also try a few supplements that are known to help.
4 Supplements to Help With Eczema
1. Vitamins & Minerals
Nutrient deficiencies are huge when it comes to health issues and illnesses. That’s another reason why we need to be feeding our body real food that actually gives us these nutrients. Things like greens, beans, berries, mushrooms, onions, nuts and seeds. I know there are some nutrients my son is missing in his diet. He’s very picky, and I’ve tried to get him to take many different kinds of multi-vitamins. But. it seems the only ones he’ll eat are the Nordic Naturals Gummies. I’ll admit – they do taste really yummy! There are also blood tests you can get to check for nutrient deficiencies.
I have read that kids with eczema are often time deficient in zinc and most B-complex vitamins. But magnesium as well as vitamins A, C and E are also beneficial for preventing inflammation, allergies and improving skin health. When it comes to vitamins and minerals – just make sure to get them all! When you know of specific deficiencies – that’s when you could up the ante.
Natural Healthy Concepts has a great selection of kid’s multi-vitamins you can trust.
2. Fish Oil – Omega 3 Essential Fatty Acid
Some research have proved fish oil helps reduce inflammatory substances that play a role in eczema. I’ve been giving my son Barlean’s Omega Swirl Fish Oil. It’s the only fish oil I can get him to take. It tastes like a Dreamsicle.
3. GLA – Omega 6 Essential Fatty Acid
The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition did studies on GLA supplementation on kids with eczema or atopic dermatitis. They found GLA helps to reduce the severity and ease the inflammation associated with it. To get GLA in you or your child’s diet, you could try a complete omega 3-6-9 supplement. Black Currant Oil, Evening Primrose Oil or Borage Oil are also good sources of GLA.
I noticed in the beginning of my little guy’s life that supplementing with probiotics seemed to do some good. If you don’t know much about about that, read this article on the Difference Between Good and Bad bacteria. I still give my son probiotics. He loves Solaray’s orange cream chewables.
There are also studies that proved taking probiotics during pregnancy help reduce the risk for your child developing eczema. Just another thing I wish I would have known way back when.
In addition to all this, drink lots of water, try to alleviate stress as much as possible and for goodness sake – use natural baby care as well as laundry and cleaning supplies. It’s the easiest thing you can do.
Also read this article on 5 Natural Ways to Treat Eczema.
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