Psoriasis is a condition that causes red, itchy patches of skin, most often on the elbows, knees, and scalp. Some types of psoriasis cause painful, scale-like rashes that crack and bleed, while others cause white bumps, blisters, or small red dots.
Scientists believe that at least 10 percent of people inherit one or more of the genes that could eventually lead to psoriasis. However, only 2 percent to 3 percent of the population develops the disease. Researchers believe that for a person to develop psoriasis, that person must have a combination of the genes that cause psoriasis and be exposed to specific external factors known as “triggers.”
There are many lifestyle issues such as stress that may trigger psoriasis. Many believe that certain foods can also trigger outbreaks. Following are some foods that are believed to cause outbreaks of psoriasis.
- sugary drinks and soda
- white bread, white rice, and other processed or enriched bread products
- packaged cookies, cakes, and snack foods
- processed meats such as bacon, sausages, and hot dogs
- fried foods
- alcohol, especially drinks with sugar
These foods also are related to inflammation. Each of these foods can also contribute to weight gain. Weight gain and obesity are associated with psoriasis and obese people have an increased risk for psoriasis.
The health of the gut plays a huge role in overall health, including the immune system, metabolism, and weight. The bacteria in the gut play a vital part in making sure the body works as it should.
There are huge numbers of bacterial cells inside the human body. Diet directly impacts this important community of cells.
A study published in Arthritis & Rheumatology examined the gut bacteria of healthy people and people who suffered from psoriasis and found that people with psoriasis had less diverse gut bacteria than healthy people.
There is no specific prescribed diet for psoriasis. However, eating an anti-inflammatory diet high in plant-based foods may decrease symptoms and reduce the risk of further complications. Plant-based foods include vegetables, fruits, legumes, seeds, and unrefined oils.