What your doctor DOESN’T tell you about eczema

Eczema is one of the body’s last cries for help.  It is desperately trying to expel toxins from the body, that it has not been able to do so through other means.  It is related to chronic inflammation of the gut and liver and has much less to do with dry weather and ‘thin skin’ than most fact sheets let on.

So what could be causing it?  A food that the body does not digest well will certainly have the body in turmoil.  A food sensitivity will tend to produce inflammation inside the body and may present as either an allergic reaction or simply nothing external, at first glance. The body may try to cope with this inflammation via eczema, particularly if the liver is functioning poorly.

Chemicals are another cause of eczema.  This may be from external contact such as soaps, chlorine and detergents and also sunscreen.  It may also be from chemicals that the digestive system is exposed to, such as non-organic foods, food additives and even overuse of medications such as steroid creams and antibiotics.  Yes, the very products doctors are prescribing to ‘bandaid’ the effects of eczema!

Besides food and chemicals, stress can be another cause.  Elevated cortisol in the body can literally produce holes in the intestinal lining, allowing undigested food, yeast and other toxins through, again producing inflammation in the body.

What can I do about eczema?  If you aim to get to the root of the problem, try not to turn immediately to steroid creams and ‘dry skin’ products like QV bath oil or Alpha Keri Wash.  These ‘dry skin’ products are still made by pharmaceutical companies, with less-than-natural ingredients such as paraffin, petroleum jelly and parabens (known carcinogens), sodium lauryl sulphate (SLS – a dangerous chemical), triclosan (a pesticide) and a host of other chemicals.

The more detoxifying your child’s body has to do, the more their liver is overloaded and the more likely their body will be forced to excrete these wastes through the skin, as eczema.

To be proactive, you will need to consider either first removing potential culprit foods, at least for an elimination test or turning to natural products, to reduce the body’s toxic load from chemicals.  In the meantime, consuming Omega 3 and 6 oils, in the form of say fish/krill oil, flaxseed/linseed oil, avocado, cold-pressed olive oil and organic nuts such as walnuts are extremely important for those suffering from eczema.  Probiotics, to support gut health, have also shown great improvement.

What are the best natural skin products?  Coconut oil is the best product you can use!  It can be used as a soap, a moisturiser, an antifungal/viral/microbial first aid cream and a bath oil.  It is even an ideal toothpaste (Natural toothpaste recipe) as it kills off the germs and remineralises teeth at the same time.

image : coconutoilbenefits.com.au

image : coconutoilbenefits.com.au

Natural sunscreens do exist.  You just need to visit your local health food store to find them.  Interestingly, studies have shown how sunlight can improve eczema.

How do I determine the culprit food?  This is a tricky one as eczema may not show up immediately after consuming an inflaming food.  Go with your gut.  What foods do you think are the worst offenders for your child?  Start by doing a 3 week elimination test of this food group and then watching closely as you introduce it back in.  Once the body has had a break from this irritating food, it will gain strength and give a much clearer signal of distress when you add it back in.

For those wanting less guesswork, you can seek out an IgG blood test to determine foods your child may be intolerant to, an IgE skin prick test to look at allergies, or using kinesiology to test how the body copes with the main allergens, with simple, pain-free muscle testing.

Is it easier to just ‘bandaid’ the cause?  Initially, it definitely seems easier to ignore eczema by using creams and dry skin products.  It is easy to blame the weather or put it down to ‘no known cause’.  However, eczema visible to our eyes means chronic inflammation on the inside of the body.  Research is showing chronic inflammation is the start of all diseases and even cancer, later in life.  It is linked to auto-immune disorders such as asthma, ADHD, autism, Alzheimer’s, neurological diseases, arthritis and also linked to obesity, diabetes and heart disease.

Eczema will come back to bite harder later in life.  A few simple steps such as adding in Omega 3 oils, probiotics and replacing coconut oil with many chemicals, will significantly reduce your child’s chances of living with eczema.  Looking into removing culprit foods will improve their chances even more.  And chances are, you’ll improve your whole family’s health at the same time.

🙂 Heidi

Natural is just as good as chemicals!

 I find it interesting that there is a trend to use natural bubble bath for kids yet hand soap, sunscreen, laundry detergent and even toothpaste have nasty, if not worse, chemicals in them.  Chemicals that if you look into it, are affecting our health more than we realise.
Slowly but surely we have been switching over to natural products because of the boys’ sensitivities.  It is just about changing habits, seeking out the products and reducing the family’s toxic load.

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I put my family’s health first

I always placed my and my family’s health as number one priority, as without health what have you got?

In light of National Organic Week here in Australia this week, here is our story!

We have been on a long road with both Master 3 and Master 1 being sensitive to many foods, but also chemicals such as chlorine, additives such as preservatives and colours and even latex.  Through kinesiology (which is done by muscle testing, just holding the product to your tummy or head), we have worked out which foods and chemicals the boys are ‘weak’ to.

After seeing Master 3 break out in hives when eating almonds, my initial thought was that it was an allergic reaction.  Thankfully a friend who had also been seeing the kinesiologist for her children had tested organic almonds on her children.  Completely fine.  So we tested organic almonds for Master 3.  Completely fine.  He ate them.  Completely fine.  Hmmm.

Muscle testing on products such as corn thins, lentils, dessicated coconut and cinnamon all revealed weakness (or intolerance) to the non-organic variety.  Bring in the organic product and yes, completely fine!  So after seeing the reactions, seeing the muscle testing and then allowing Master 3 to eat all of these products and no reaction, how could I not start to become very suspect of WHAT is on these non-organic products?  And what has it been doing to my child?  And yes, I began to really trust kinesiology, over the GPs and medical specialists’ opinions (‘no allergic reaction via prick test, therefore food is not related to the eczema and behaviour, you can go home’), the dietitians and even the naturopaths who didn’t really ‘prove’ to us the importance of going organic.

Seeing this photo, really got my mind thinking.

Image from Rawforbeauty.com

Image from Rawforbeauty.com

It played on my mind.  I’ve always considered organic food as just expensive versions of the food we have always grown up eating.  But then again, I don’t do things ‘just because’.  What if what we were brought up on was not necessarily the ‘best thing’ but the ‘done thing’?  What if all of these chemicals we are eating and including in our life everyday has something to do with today’s epidemics such as allergies/intolerances, eczema, ASD, ADHD and even diseases and cancers?  It certainly seems possible, just contemplating it, without any research.  But getting trustworthy information that isn’t tainted by big companies and industries is certainly hard.  The universities are shifting results of studies to protect the industries they are involved with (such as genetic modification and agricultural biosecurity), so of course our welfare is not necessarily number one priority.

So once we had removed the non-organic pantry foods the boys couldn’t handle, there were still reactions such as eczema and ADHD-type behaviour in Master 3.  I just knew we had to look at organic fruit and vegetables and even meat but the price was holding us back.  But one day, my top priorities in life came back to me – HEALTH NUMBER ONE.  We had paid a fortune on the different professionals and supplements, trying to sort out Master 3’s health, and also my sanity.  It came to me – maybe going organic would be a good prevention, rather than trying to constantly ‘fix’ Master 3’s gut from the hits it was taking from all of the ‘poisons’ he was eating.

Along this whole journey, I’ve plodded away slowly but surely, not trying to take on too many changes at once.  So when we threw budget out the window and put health as number one, next was organic fruit and vegetables.  I tried the farmers’ markets, Woolworths and eventually ended up with online organic fruit and veges for the price and convenience.  Then I bit the bullet and looked into meat.

It has changed the way we eat.  We eat less meat now due to the price but I make up for it with other products such as avocado, nuts and the vegetables in season.  This has made us healthier again, rather than loading up on meat!

And just like big companies have started realising they have to listen to our children’s health by removing artificial colours and starting to work more on preservatives, companies are now coming on board with organic products.  Woolworths has their own Macro Organic brand with more and more products popping up as well as ALDI providing more and more organic products.  Corn thins now have an organic version.  This has also sealed in my mind, going organic can’t be wrong and surely is not a ‘fad’.

Of course, by the time you start to feel like you can ‘see’ the invisible chemicals on non-organic food and start to associate them with doing nasty stuff to our body (just like you feel like you can ‘see’ germs on a child’s hands who has gastro), you start to realise how many other chemicals we are all exposed to in our day, including our little ones.  So the deep hole continued and I have started slowly but surely removing air fresheners, chemical-based ‘natural’ soaps, dishwashing liquid and washing detergent and replacing with natural and organic ones.  

We might be paying a bit more each week for this lifestyle, but it is indescribable to know that we are not taking on nearly the ‘chemical load’ we once were and the boys are able to be healthier.  And we are saying ‘no’ to the industries who aren’t so worried about our health or the epidemics out there.  And who knows, our future health is more than likely thanking us too.

I Raise My Kids is at facebook too 🙂