Causes of Eczema
There are many potential causes of eczema: allergies, food sensitivity, environment, chemicals, stress, lack of nutrients (especially omega 3 fatty acids) and toxic overload.
When people are first diagnosed with eczema, it often accompanies other symptoms, known as the Atopic Triad (commonly seen in infants and young children):
3. Allergic Rhinitis(Hay Fever)
Sometimes constipation is in the picture as well. However, eczema involves too many reactive inflammatory cells in the skin, and when something triggers them, they don’t turn off as they should. We need to control eczema by controlling the factors that “trigger” the inflamed skin, and reduce it with anti-inflammatory therapies.
How do we do restore the skin back to normal?
Eczema signals that the body is out of balance and that it needs to return back to homeostasis – which is simply, bringing your body back into balance and order.
You need to figure out which is the root cause – and then tackle the problem. I will examine specific causes below.
Why Cortisone Creams Don’t Help Eczema
I would not suggest using cortisone creams and steroids because they merely mask the symptoms but they do not heal the root cause. Research studies are proof that they cause many unwanted side effects, including affecting the liver, thinning the skin, slowing growth in children, and causing long term effects on bone health. I also started getting stretch marks on my inner legs as a result of it.
For many years, I was put on these cortisone creams and steroids that did not work. My skin and my scalp were not happy – but my internal body was not happy either.
Eczema is a reflection of how healthy the internal organs are. Since the skin is the outer most layer, it is often the last place to receive nutrients. That being said, if you are receiving the proper nutrients and eliminating the proper toxins in order for your body to remain healthy, then your skin will also be well nourished.
You need to heal your body from the INSIDE OUT
Creams and lotions will help relieve your eczema – but it will not solve the problem. Something is wrong internally that needs to be addressed. This means that on your road to recovery, 2 questions you need to ask yourself are:
1) Am I getting the right nutrients my body needs in order to heal?
2) What toxins do I need to avoid and eliminate for my skin to heal?
Nutritionists know that humans need the right amount of vitamins, minerals, fatty acids, amino acids, and carbohydrates in order to thrive. If the body is missing certain nutrients, this can lead to symptoms such as, migraines, anaemia, night blindness and cancer. Food is the best medicine, after all. If you’re not eating the right foods, even in developed countries, you can experience malnutrition and nutrition disorders, which can express itself in the form of certain diseases.
Toxins, on the other hand, are anything that can cause harm or disease to the body – especially if someone is re-exposed to a toxin over and over again. Toxins can come in the form of food allergens, stress, chemicals, alcohol, sugar, junk food, cigarette smoking, or heavy metal poisoning.
Causes of Eczema
Food sensitivities and improper digestion
If your body experiences poor digestion (e.g. bloating gas, undigested food in your stools), it will affect your immune system and your entire body. A compromised digestive system is likely to have more allergens; it is also possible that you may be reacting to certain foods which expresses itself in the form of eczema. The most common allergens are wheat, sugar, eggs, soy, and milk. For example, my eczema was so severe that everytime I ate wheat, sugar, and additives my fingers tingled and my eczema rashes would show up the next day. Now, I can eat almost anything and not react.
Improve your digestion and do an elimination diet to find out what you are sensitive to. Note: food sensitivities can occur up to 4 days after you eat certain foods.
Omega 3 & Nutrient deficiencies
Eczema sufferers often have trouble converting Omega 3 fatty acids to a useable form for the body. Take an Omega 3 supplement or Evening Primrose Oil every day and you’ll start noticing your skin will get softer. It also helps rashes and brain development.
Nutrient deficiencies can also occur if you eat too much sugar, junk food, refined foods – and not enough real foods such as vegetables, fruits, and whole grains. You need to shift your body to a state where it can receive enough nutrients to thrive. Vegetables are key here because they contain an enormous amount of beneficial nutrients for your skin. Your skin is the last place in your body to receive the nutrients – so it really shows if you’re lacking in certain minerals or vitamins.
Something in the body can be imbalanced, for example, 70% of your immune system is found in your gut. If you have an overgrowth of bad bacteria compared to good bacteria in your gut (which is common among people who commonly take antibiotics), then your immune system is weakened and often eczema is one of the symptoms of this. To solve this, start taking probiotics (one with at least 10 billion colonies) and eat more fermented foods (such as kim chi, miso, natto, sauerkraut).
In addition, the body can also be producing too many or too few hormones. In low thyroid function, circulation is reduced so the skin may receive as little as one-fourth to one-fifth the normal blood supply.
Infections can damage tissue anywhere in the body. In particular, Candida is incredibly common in eczema patients, and is a yeast-like fungus that can cause Candidiasis. They feed on processed foods (refined flours or foods), sugars, antibiotics and drugs. If you have constant sugar or wheat cravings, this can be a strong sign that your body has candida. You can follow a candida diet or cleanse to rid your body of candida. This usually helps improve the symptoms significantly.
Vitamin D Deficiency
Many people nowadays are Vitamin D deficient, and Vitamin D is especially important for anyone with eczema or other chronic inflammatory conditions. A German study showed that low serum vitamin D level is inversely associated with eczema in German children and adolescents. It is difficult to get Vitamin D from food – so you either have to get it from sunlight or from supplements. Make sure to supplement with Vitamin D3 which is better than D2. Use emulsified liquid drops and eat it with fats for best absorption!
Overload of Toxins
In our modern society, it is difficult to avoid toxins since they are everywhere – in car pollution, stress, junk food, chemicals in cosmetics, shampoo and household detergents. Any of these toxins can overload the kidney and liver, making them congested.
As an analogy, imagine your body is like a bucket. Our body takes in toxins everyday. If you take in more toxins then you can eliminate (through channels such as feces, urine, and sweat), then our bucket will become overloaded and these toxins can easily show up on the skin, through symptoms such as eczema, rashes, acne, aches and joint pain.
Often, your body will express its symptoms according to your body’s inherent genetic weakness. For example, if your mom or dad had eczema, then your chances of symptoms showing up as eczema are more likely – especially when your bucket is “overloaded.”
How Toxins Cause Inflammation – The Bucket Theory
Below is a video I made to show why inflammation happens in the body to demonstrate The Bucket Theory. If you’d like to find out more about why eczema and inflammation is happening in your body, sign up here for this free 4 part video series taught by a naturopath, nutritionist, teacher, and product expert to give you solutions to understand why eczema is happening in your life,
Please note that, other factors, such as zinc deficiency, low thyroid, blood sugar imbalances, and low HCL can also cause eczema too.
Start with small changes and you’ll begin to see a big difference!
As you can see from the causes above, the goal is to heal eczema from the inside out. Find out your cause – and slowly work to heal it. It may seem overwhelming at first, but slowly start to make small changes one step at a time, and I can guarantee you that you will see a great change in your eczema condition.
Always be conscious that your body is eliminating more toxins than it takes in.
This is why it is important to switch to all natural and chemical free products so that you can have the best shampoo or cream for eczema. I hope to help you find the best natural and chemical free shampoo and cream products to bring you relief and help you become eczema free.
- Healing Eczema: Why Dieting Is Not Enough
- The Power of Thoughts: How Mindset Shifts Can Help Eliminate Eczema
- My Detailed Eczema Healing Treatment Plan
Abby is a Registered Holistic Nutritionist who helps clients achieve optimal health. She is passionate about seeing people use health and nutrition to transform lives. She hopes that her experiences and knowledge can help educate others on natural remedies that will help eczema. Follow her on Twitter, Facebook, Pinterest, Instagram, or YouTube for more updates!
Disclaimer: All the information found on this website should be used for informational purposes only and is not intended to replace proper medical advice. Always consult a qualified health care provider before embarking on a health or supplement plan.