Community Views: Psoriasis and Diet
Last updated: November 2021
Psoriasis management involves looking for ways to reduce inflammation since flare-ups are caused by an overactive immune response.1 Many of those who live with chronic psoriasis have tried to reduce inflammation through dietary changes.
What those with psoriasis have to say
To learn from your experiences, we turned to the PlaquePsoriasis.com Facebook page. We asked community members to tell us: “Has anyone changed their diet to improve their psoriasis symptoms?” Here is a look at what some of you shared.
Removing gluten was the most common response to our prompt. A gluten allergy can produce an immune response. This flares an immune system disorder like psoriasis. However, not all bodies react negatively to gluten. You and your doctor are the best judges of your body’s response.
If you feel better being gluten-free, listen to that! If you do not notice any difference, gluten is not a factor for you.2
“I definitely notice psoriasis is worse for me when I eat too much wheat.”
“I have been trying gluten-free. I have not noticed a significant difference yet.”
“I do intermittent fasting and cut out gluten.”
Avoiding and eliminating dairy
There is conflicting evidence of dairy’s role in inflammation. High saturated fats can contribute to inflammation. Cheese and full-fat dairy are examples. Some other fatty acids in dairy have health benefits. Dairy is not 1 single food and is variable between products.
Some of you choose to eliminate or reduce dairy. You find it helpful for managing psoriasis symptoms. Others of you can eat dairy without issue. This fits with the research – it all depends!3
“I try to avoid dairy. I like almond milk but struggle to find a good replacement for other things like ice cream and yogurt because non-dairy ones seem to be loaded with sugar.”
“Cut dairy and gluten. It’s been helping some.”
“I try to eat dairy-free and eat less red meat.”
Vitamins and supplements
A few of you added vitamins and supplements to your diet. These may help reduce skin outbreaks. However, vitamins and supplements are not right for everyone. It is vital to talk to your doctor about what is best for you and your health.2
“I have started taking turmeric capsules. I also take vitamin D3 capsules twice a day.”
“I take a mushroom capsule, omega 3, and vitamin D. It has helped a lot!"
A look at other dietary changes
Several of you shared other changes you made to your diet. The desire to clear and prevent outbreaks means trying different things. Psoriasis treatment is not a one-size-fits-all approach. Diet changes may or may not prove helpful, but you give it a chance!
“I do paleo. Doctor-recommended diet."
“I juiced celery every day for 2 months and cleared up a bad outbreak.”
“I changed mine due to high sugar. Cut out most sugar and carbs. No change in my psoriasis.”
“I went on an autoimmune protocol diet. Went from being 98 percent covered to 2 percent!”
We appreciate the different diet approaches you shared with us.
Psoriasis management is specific to each person, and diet changes have different outcomes among community members. Your varied experiences highlight the challenges of managing psoriasis. Thank you for sharing your insights with the community.
Does your psoriasis management change with the seasons?