The various foods that you strive to eat during a typical week’s worth of meal planning may provide you with adequate calories and nutrition. But it’s not always easy to make ideal food choices, especially if you are pressed for time and are rushing through a drive-through or mostly eat highly processed foods.
For many individuals focusing on their nutrition, it’s natural to use supplements to promote their health and well being. And for those who are suffering from eczema or who have loved ones with this condition whom they’re trying to help, supplementation is an appealing approach. You would use it not only to stay healthy overall, but to calm down eczema symptoms.
Here is insight into the 7 best supplements for eczema, designed to bring you a measure of relief.
If you haven’t heard of calendula, you can be forgiven because that’s part of its official Latin name, “Calendula officinalis.” People more often call it marigold, so look for that name in the list of ingredients when searching for supplements to address your eczema symptoms.
Some of those people looking for calendula are soldiers experiencing pain and itching from eczema. The U.S. military looks after the health and well being of our veterans. With so many in need of treatment for conditions such as eczema, the VA weighed in on the subject of supplementation.
As the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs noted, calendula “has been used historically to soothe irritated skin. Studies looking specifically at the usefulness of calendula in atopic dermatitis are lacking. Calendula appears to have antibiotic, antiviral, anti-inflammatory, and antioxidant properties.
Chamomile is a flower that countless people rely on for a nice cup of tea at the end of a difficult day, to help them relax and sleep. It’s also used in supplements. The VA noted that chamomile “seems to have anti-inflammatory, antimicrobial, and antioxidant properties. Additionally, flavonoids present in chamomile have been shown to prevent histamine release from basophils.”
You can apply it as an ointment or cream to irritated skin. People also add chamomile in powdered form or as an alcoholic extract to their bath water.
It’s possible your eczema symptoms are made worse simply because you suffer from a vitamin D deficiency, according to a report in Dermatology Practical & Conceptual. People make their own vitamin D when sunlight hits their skin. Individuals who were cooped up indoors most of the time during the coronavirus pandemic and who didn’t take vitamin D supplements may have very low levels.
Gamma Linolenic Acid
This is an essential fatty acid. People who are deficient in gamma linolenic acid may experience symptoms of eczema like itchy skin, scaly skin and skin that feels too dry. If you use gamma linolenic acid supplements, the idea is you will replenish the missing nutrient, helping to improve the health of your skin barrier.
Omega-3 Fatty Acids
People consume omega-3 fatty acids because of their anti-inflammatory profile. They’re most commonly found on the supplements shelf in the form of fish oil capsules, which you’d consume with a meal. Omega-3 fatty acids also appear in flax, so vegetarians avoiding fish can get it from this source.
Probiotics are a natural dietary supplement. You’ve already consumed probiotics if you’ve eaten bacteria with live microorganisms. It turns out they may be a suitable choice for eczema symptom relief. “The use of probiotics and prebiotics in combination appears to hold promise in the treatment of AD,” as noted by Dermatology Practical & Conceptual.
This method may be most ideal for parents treating symptoms of their little ones. “Based on the results of meta-analysis, the use of probiotics appears most promising when given for at least 8 weeks to children over the age of 1 year, and with the use of probiotics that contain mixed strains of bacteria.”
Turmeric, that spice with the vivid yellow hue is one of the ingredients that curry is known for. You also find manufacturers including turmeric in mustard, to add a bit of zing and color to the condiment. Per the National Eczema Association, dermatologist Peter Lio, MD recommends patient use oral turmeric. “Its medicinal power lies in its main active component, a potent micronutrient called curcumin, which also gives the spice its distinctive color.”
Lio serves as clinical assistant professor of dermatology and pediatrics, working at Northwestern University’s Feinberg School of Medicine. He is the founding director of the Chicago Integrative Eczema Center.
Be Scientific About Your Supplements
Every person has a unique body chemistry and different life experiences, so keep in mind that your reaction or lack of reaction to any particular supplement could be different from that of a friend or relative.
One approach you will want to consider is being systematic in your use of supplements. For example, decide which supplement seems to be the most promising, given your history of eczema symptoms. Then, just use that one supplement for a certain time period.
You’ll want to consult the manufacturer for details on ingredients and usage, of course. Make notes about your use of a supplement, writing down any signs of improvement. Do tests on one supplement at a time, so if you start to see good results, you will have a better idea of which one helped bring you relief.
What kinds of supplements have you had success with in treating your eczema? We’d love to hear about the results. Please sound off in the comments section below to benefit others who are also looking for relief from their uncomfortable eczema symptoms.
- U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs: Atopic Dermatitis
- Schlichte, M. J., Vandersall, A., & Katta, R. (2016). Diet and eczema: a review of dietary supplements for the treatment of atopic dermatitis. Dermatology practical & conceptual, 6(3), 23–29. https://doi.org/10.5826/dpc.0603a06
- National Eczema Association: Get the Facts: Turmeric