Benefits of Garlic for Psoriasis Patients
By now, almost everyone knows that garlic is good for overall health, but did you know that eating garlic may also be good for psoriasis patients? The benefits of garlic for psoriasis patients are linked to the ability of garlic to inhibit the activity of lipoxygenase, an enzyme that is involved in an inflammatory cascade caused by the presence of arachidonic acid. People with inflammatory psoriasis have been reported to have high levels of arachidonic acid in their adipose tissues and skin.
In addition, garlic — especially raw garlic — is a good source of vitamin C: ounce for ounce, raw garlic contains more than five times the amount of vitamin C found in carrots. Crushed garlic also delivers plenty of allicin as well as zinc and selenium. All of these nutrients are known to have strong antioxidant activity. The antioxidants in garlic are good for psoriasis patients due to their ability to reduce oxidative stress. Oxidative stress has been linked to skin inflammation in psoriasis patients.
To boost the antioxidant and anti-psoriasis effects of garlic, it is best to let crushed or chopped garlic sit for about ten minutes before eating it or using it in your recipe. Letting crushed garlic sit for several minutes before using it helps maximize its allicin content.
Before adding garlic to your anti-psoriasis diet, you should know that eating garlic sometimes causes side effects. In particular, sudden increases in garlic intake often cause mild side effects as the body does not have enough time to adjust to the dietary changes. These side effects may include a burning sensation in the mouth or throat, upset stomach, garlic-scented perspiration and breath, dizziness, and heartburn.
Furthermore, people who are intolerant or allergic to garlic may experience swelling of the mouth or tongue, contact dermatitis, skin lesions, respiratory problems (such as a stuffy nose or shortness of breath), vomiting, or nausea. Fortunately, true garlic allergies are fairly uncommon. However, like any allergy, a garlic allergy should be taken seriously and foods containing garlic should be eliminated from the diet. Note that if you have been diagnosed with a garlic allergy, you may also be allergic or sensitive to foods like onions, shallots, leeks, chives, leeks, and ginger.
In addition to people who are allergic to garlic, people who have a stomach ulcer or bleeding disorder or who are on anticoagulant or antiplatelet medication should refrain from using garlic or at least talk to their doctor before adding garlic to their anti-psoriasis diet. Furthermore, pregnant and breast-feeding women as well as patients who are due to undergo surgery should consult with a doctor before using garlic as a psoriasis treatment.
Written by two dermatologists specializing in the treatment of psoriasis, Kendra Bergstrom and Alexa Kimball, 100 Questions & Answers About Psoriasis (pictured on the right) provides practical answers to common questions facing people with psoriasis. Presented in an appealing question-and-answer format, this authorative guide covers everything from the development and diagnosis of the disease to common risk factors and treatment options. Throughout, you will also find "insider" advice from real patients. To learn more about this compelling book, go to Amazon.com, Amazon.co.uk or Amazon.ca.
Make it a habit to visit HealWithFood.org's online Guide to Healing Psoriasis on a regular basis. Updated once a week, the sidebar on the home page of the guide contains tons of links to interesting nutrition-related articles hand-picked for psoriasis sufferers. It also contains a weekly smoothie recipe featuring ingredients with psoriasis-fighting potential, as well as a book tip.