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Wanting to Try Something Natural
from Joanne D.

Hi Ed:  Just been reading the notices on your site which I have found very interesting.

I suffered from eczema when I was a kid, which the doctors said was infantile.  At the age of 16 I eventually got referred to a dermatologist and had a patch test.  I am highly allergic to nickel.  I haven't had eczema since I cut it out of my diet, etc.  Please note this was after 16 years of facial steroids etc which has done harm (rosacea).

I got plaque psoriasis when I was 27.  All of a sudden it just appeared everywhere bar my face.  I have been hospitalised 3 times for about 25 days each time. I have been on cyclosporin for 3 years (6 weeks on, 6 weeks off) which sometimes does the trick but never totally clears it. I also use dithramol cream, dovabet, trimovate blah blah blah.

Bad skin has fairly taken over my entire life.  I am now 34 and cyclosporin doesn't make me feel that good or do me much good either, so I am determined to find something that is going to work for me that is natural based.

I have been looking at loads of websites and theories.

I tried a natural cream (shouldn't mention the company name as the debate goes on), spent a fortune and now I am covered with eczema AND psoriasis!!  I am now trying to clear that with cyclosporin.

I have looked at pH balance and found a drink that is alkaline, X20, which may be my next project.  Also Essential 7 is meant to work, sulphur and psorinum is another "solution" I was looking at, and finally, Psoriasis Tab.  Four things to try inbetween the cyclosporin (so I know I can clear up the mess afterwards).  I know they cost a lot but hopefully it will be worth it in the end.

Have you heard about any of these?  Any opinions? -Jo D.

*****

Ed’s Response:  Hi Jo.  Sorry to read about your terrible times with eczema, rosacea and P.  You do have unfortunate skin!   But at FlakeHQ you've got a lot of kin! 

I wasn't surprised to read you've had good luck with cyclo — but I hadn't heard about the 6 weeks on / 6 weeks off admin option, especially not for 3 years.  This must be something they do on your side of the pond but flinch from on mine.  (Not to worry: that happens a lot.)  I've taken cyclo several times, but always on a daily admin schedule and never for longer than a year (or for less than a year because I tend to grow blood pressure and edema problems when using cyclo for long periods of time). 

I wish you well on your search for a natural alternative but will warn that you have a hard road ahead.  I've been receiving tales of experiences on assorted natural remedies for a decade, now, and have noted this trend.  Things that you ingest expressly to palliate P have the worst track record over all.  At best they seem to work for some percentage of people and not for long periods of time — even though they may require long periods of time to reach maximum effectiveness.  The natural approaches to treating P about which I've received the most GOOD reports all have to do with EXCLUDING things from consumption.  By "GOOD report" I mean reports of clearance MAINTAINED for as long as the exclusionary regimen is continued.  Obviously, such "natural alternatives" are, in fact, "diets."  They are the Pagano diet, the Connolly diet ... and derivatives of these along with some off-the-wall others.  The best known diets (Pagano, Connolly and Tirant) come well accessorized and theory-laden, and get poo-poo'd mostly because of those accessories and theories.  Facts are, people follow the diets (remove all the stuff from their previous eating habits that the diets preclude) and lots of them — not all of them — get better skin. 

Since there's such scant credible evidence on diets (or any natural alternative, for that matter) why some work and others don't is speculative at best. 

My opinion — subject to change as new information arrives! — is that most natural approaches to treating P, including diet — most of all diet — work (if they work at all) by mitigating P triggers.  Triggers are things that make P happen and turn us into flakers.  They are frustrating because there appear to be so many of them!  And there's mounting evidence that triggers change over time.  What might cause a person to flake when they're 15 might not be the cause when they're 50 — but something else might become the trigger! 

So, when I suggest your road to discovering a natural palliative for your P is going to be a hard one, I'm considering the "lottery factor" involved in finding a tolerable regimen that actually mitigates one or more of YOUR triggers. 

But do not interpret my warning as trying to change your mind about pursuing a natural alternative.  I hear from too many people for whom it has paid off:  There are folks out there living relatively lesion-free without taking toxic medicines or expensive treatments BECAUSE they have traveled that hard road AND met with success. 

So, I wish you the best.  And please, keep us posted along the way!  -Ed

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