Today we are talking Eczema. Again. The more information we have, the better. (We’re going to talk the LATEX-FREE diet with a very special guest!)
I always knew diet played a role in eczema. I know that dairy impacts a lot of people’s flare-ups. But avoiding dairy alone isn’t the cure all for everyone. In fact, there are tons of people who have cut out dairy and seen no improvement. Or cut out gluten and saw no improvement. It makes people wonder– what else could help?!
DIET IS SO KEY WITH ECZEMA. Eczema is an internal allergy that manifests externally.
A blogger that I truly admire is Jessica Milligen of Devoted Existence. Whether you follow her blog or her instagram, you know that she commits to a VERY healthy, very drool-worthy diet. She’s so dang smart- A Bachelor’s in Chemistry, a Master’s in Business… a commitment to her faith and to nutrition that works for her… and can I mention- what she posts is ATTAINABLE too? Like it’s stuff we could easily make ourselves.
OH and she’s funny too! Kind of a clutz like me. 😉 Always spilling things and SHOWING IT ON THE GRAM– thank you for not being perfect, can I get an amen? You know I live for women who keep. it. REAL.
So Jessica (@DevotedExistence) suffers from Eczema. So naturally, when she wrote a post about a diet that REALLY helps her… I was intrigued and HAD to have her on The Violet Fog. I think this information could really help someone!
LET’S GET RIGHT TO IT!
Katey: How long have you been suffering from Eczema and when did it start for you?
Jessica: I’ve had eczema on my hands for as long as I can remember. It started on my right-hand fingers, then it spread to my left-hand fingers, then moved to my palms. At first, it was just an annoying pain from cracked dry skin, but then it turned into extremely itchy and painful bumps.
Before we mention your latex-free diet- what were you doing before that wasn’t working for you?
Jessica: I have used prescription creams, OTC lotions, DIY home remedies, and nothing really helped. That’s when I turned to food as a possible cause. In an effort to find out what it might be, I decided to try the Whole 30 diet. Unfortunately, while I was doing the Whole 30, my eczema flared up worse than ever before. It didn’t make sense to me because it’s such an anti-inflammatory diet. I was truly at a loss.
A lot of people feel dairy affects their eczema. Do you feel it does it for you?
Jessica: I’m intolerant to all forms of dairy, so I couldn’t really answer for that. I can say that cutting dairy out didn’t help my eczema issues.
Tell us about the latex-free diet. How much it has helped you, when you realized what it was. Etc. I will also be sure to link your article for Violets to read.
Jessica: The “latex-free diet” is a term I coined after I heard about the cross-sensitivity between latex and certain foods. My cousin is a medical doctor and apparently, it’s a well-known fact that if you’re allergic to latex, you’ll also be allergic to foods such as avocados, bananas, apples, carrots, celery, etc. I had known about my latex allergy since I had braces in middle school, but I never imagined there could be a correlation. I decided to cut out the high-reactivity foods from my diet and my eczema cleared up within a week. I tested it a couple times, and a couple hours after I would eat one of the foods, my hands would itch and hurt. As a health-nut, cutting out avocados has proved to be difficult…so sometimes I wear gloves to cut them to keep symptoms are bay. But recently, I’ve noticed these certain foods actually hurt my stomach, which gives me even more reason to cut them. It just goes to show that “eating healthy” HAS to be bio-individual.
Of all the “latex” foods- which ones do you think flares you up the quickest?
Jessica: AVOCADOS. Which is depressing, ha! Bananas too. Another one that’s interesting is raw white potatoes, so when I’m cutting them, I always wear gloves.
What do you think of using a steroid cream/ointment when things get really bad? Are you for it or against it?
Jessica: I am actually a big advocate of western medicine, because it really does work. After my eczema had gotten so bad, I went to a dermatologist and got a prescription. My hands hurt so bad I couldn’t sleep, so it really helped relieve the symptoms quickly. No, it didn’t solve the root cause, but it did give me some relief so that I could figure out what was causing my eczema.
Besides a latex-free diet- what other tips do you have for eczema sufferers?
Jessica: Don’t wash dishes with super-hot water, wear gloves if possible. Get hand soap for sensitive skin. Avoid handling highly acid foods without gloves on, like squeezing lemons. Don’t wash your hands too much, a little bacteria won’t kill ya. And lastly, use lotion ALL THE TIME.
Tell us Violets where we can find you and what kind of content to expect from you! <3
Jessica: You can find me on Instagram @devotedexistence or at my website www.devotedexistence.com As a graduate school student, I love to eat healthy foods, but I also love my time. I create extremely simple paleo-ish recipes that are approachable for relatively anyone.