Eating a well-balanced diet is important for anyone, but especially for someone with a chronic disease like psoriasis or psoriatic arthritis (PsA). It contributes to your overall health and may help you to manage your disease. Though diet may not have a direct impact on your skin condition, it may actually help you to protect your joints from the damage of PsA, a type of arthritis that occurs in about 1 in 7 people with psoriasis.
Below are a few tips on eating better. Remember to tell your doctor or pharmacist if you make any major changes to your diet, as some foods and nutritional supplements may interact with your medication.
- Try to eat a wide variety of foods.
- When making meals, prepare extra for later.
- Do your best to eat regularly.
- Keep food portions to a reasonable size.
- Add colour to your diet with fruits and vegetables.
- Consume only moderate amounts of sugar and salt.
- Reduce your hydrogenated or trans fat and cholesterol intake.
- Make an effort to plan your meals.
- Consider a multivitamin to supplement your diet.
Nutritional supplements of any kind can change how medications work. Some people with medical problems should not take supplements at any time. Before taking supplements, check with your doctor and do not exceed the doses that are recommended on the product’s label.
Feed your joints: Did you know that cartilage – the hard, slippery stuff that protects the ends of bones – depends on joint movement to absorb nutrients and remove waste? Staying active “feeds” your joints and keeps them clean and healthy.
Can special diets ease psoriasis?
Changing what you eat may give you a greater sense of control over your overall health, but no diet can “cure” or “ease” psoriasis or PsA. Most dietary claims have no scientific support, and studies have not found any diet that significantly improves these conditions.
If you are overweight, losing 10 pounds (4.5 kg) can reduce joint stress on your knees by as much as 40 pounds (18 kg). Losing weight can help reduce folds of skin on your body where psoriasis can appear. Most doctors recommend a common-sense approach to eating to maintain a healthy weight.