Is There A Link Between Gluten Or Other Food Allergies And Eczema?

You have scaly, red, cracked skin that sometimes even has clear fluid that leaks from it.  Maybe you have and maybe you haven’t had it diagnosed, but you know that you’re suffering from eczema.
Eczema affects up to 20% of children at some point during their childhood and up to 7% of adults suffer from eczema throughout their lives.
Doctors are not certain about what causes eczema, but they have found that people with celiac disease are three times more likely than the general population to have eczema.
There is no clear answer as to what causes eczema, but it does seem that there may be a genetic cause, or at least people with celiac disease may be more inclined to suffer from eczema too.  Those who may not suffer from celiac disease themselves but have a genetic predisposition to the disease, are also more likely to suffer from eczema than the general population.
In other words, if your mother has celiac disease but you don’t appear to, you may still have that predisposition which may manifest itself through eczema outbreaks.
Gluten Free Diets
There have been some studies that indicate a gluten-free diet can be helpful in the treatment of eczema in some people.  The gluten free diet was shown to help patients who don’t have celiac disease but who may have gluten sensitivity without the celiac issues.
The gluten free diet also helps some people who did have celiac disease along with eczema to help make their eczema more tolerable and more manageable.
Other Food Allergies
Gluten is not the only food allergy that may be linked to eczema.  It is possible that eggs, milk, soy, tree nuts, fish and peanuts could be the cause of eczema.
These issues are especially likely to manifest themselves in babies and children, while gluten issues can appear in anyone at any age.
When the other food allergies are to blame for eczema, they tend to cause more symptoms such as vomiting, diarrhea, cramps, hives, difficulty breathing and possibly lower blood pressure.
The younger the child is, theoretically the easier it is to monitor what kind of food allergy may be causing the eczema to flare up.
Pinpointing The Cause
If a person has a flare up soon after eating scrambled eggs, it may be worth the trouble to consult a dermatologist to determine if the egg allergy could be the issue with the eczema.
Sometimes a person can make that determination on his or her own, but it is common to take several months to truly know if a certain food was the blame since the person with the eczema will need to stop eating the suspect food for several months to evaluate their eczema flare up prevalence.
If a flare up usually occurs once a month and there are no flare ups for three months once they have removed gluten from their diet, then they may have found the culprit that is making their skin breakout.
It is not likely that finding a food that causes an eczema flare up will eliminate all eczema from a person’s life.  However, it may be beneficial as one way to attack this condition hopefully make it go dormant so that it doesn’t dominate an eczema sufferer’s life. Hopefully, through vigilance in avoiding food triggers, the person with eczema can eventually become a former sufferer.
+Dr.Cheryl Lee  Eberting is a board certified dermatologist and is a past fellow of the National Institutes of Health, who blogs regularly at cherylleemd.com
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