Are there any dietary supplements that can help with eczema?
Atopic dermatitis, better known as eczema, Ranks “As the world’s most damaging skin disease,” because it is so common, affecting perhaps one in ten children and around three percent of adults, causing red, itchy patches of skin. Have topical steroids like cortisone cream been “The main treatment” since its discovery with the 1950 Nobel Prize.
people are frightened of steroids, and “it is not uncommon for patients to express irrational fear and concern about the use of topical corticosteroids” – steroid creams and ointments. This phobia can arise from confusing topical steroids with oral or injected steroids, which have different effects. Really powerful topical steroids can thin your skin, but skin thickness should return to normal a month after you stop using it. Yes, topical steroids can cause side effects, but the concern people have seems “out of proportion to the small risk they actually pose. However, if there is some way to solve a problem without medication, it is generally preferable. What did you do about eczema before the 1950s?
Some researchers tried it in the 1930s With Vitamin D dissolved in corn oil, and to their surprise, it worked – but so did the corn oil without the vitamin D they used as a control. Other reported Cases improve after feeding Flaxseed oil and even Ingestion Schmalz, from a study “supported by a grant from the National Live Stock and Meat Board,” which apparently did not want to be excluded from the campaign. The problem is, none of these studies had a control group. So, yes, after feeding someone corn oil for 12 to 18 months, they got better – but maybe they would have gotten better anyway. You don’t know until you put it to the test.
Almost all of these researchers who asserts Benefit from the use of the various fats that appear to be “missing”[ed]… Any great interest in a controlled series, ”but a researcher checked some oils and found no evidence of benefit over routine treatment. Indeed, as you can see in my video at 2:06 am Eczema treatment with evening primrose oil vs. borage oil vs. hemp seed oil, most have better in both cases, suggesting that the previously claimed “benefits may be due to usual treatment, perhaps with a dash of enthusiasm”.
By then, hydrocortisone was off, so the medical community gave up the nutritional approaches – until a letter came released 1981 on treating eczema with supplements of evening primrose oil that contains Gamma-linolenic acid, an anti-inflammatory omega-6. And indeed, when it was put to the test, it was seemed to help, but then a subsequent larger study found no effect. Whenever there are conflicting results, it is helps to do a meta-analysis where you put all the studies together. So there was the study that showed benefits, the ones that didn’t, and seven other studies. What did they find? Seven out of seven showed benefits. “The results show that the effect of Epogam [a brand of primrose oil supplement] are almost always significantly better than those of placebo. “Case closed, right? Well, the analysis was self-funded by the supplement company, which can be a red flag, and where exactly were the other seven studies published? It wasn’t you. The company right now said It conducted these seven studies but never published them. When asked to hand them over, the company said it would never do so and even threatened legal action against researchers who dared question the studies’ effectiveness.
An independent review failed to find evidence that evening primrose oil or borage oil worked better than placebo. “As we Offer Good night until evening, primrose oil story, maybe we can wake up to a world in which all clinical trial data … see the light of day … “
Borage oil actually has twice as much gamma-linolenic acid as evening primrose, but it still didn’t work, but that didn’t stop the researchers to attempt Hemp oil, which “has been used as food and medicine in China for at least 3000 years”. The researchers tried giving people about a quarter cup of hemp seed oil a day for a few months and found significant improvements in skin dryness, itching, and drug needs – but not when compared to placebo. In fact, studies of dietary supplements across the board, whether fish oil, zinc, selenium, vitamins D, E or B6, sea buckthorn oil, hemp oil or sunflower oil in total, shown “No convincing evidence that dietary supplement use improves people’s eczema.” This is disappointing, but wait a second. This is only for oral supplements. What about natural remedies that are applied topically? I discuss this in my video Eczema treatment with coconut oil vs. mineral oil vs. petroleum jelly.
Meta-analyzes can also be shifted the other way if negative results are tacitly postponed and only positive results are published. Antidepressants are a classic example of this publication bias. Check out my coverage in my video Do Antidepressants Really Work?.
When I got in line in the end, I was going to cover topical natural treatments in my next video. Eczema treatment with coconut oil vs. mineral oil vs. petroleum jelly.
What about skipping the lard and trying to eat healthier? See what happened in Treating asthma and eczema with a plant-based diet.
For more information on skin health, see:
Michael Greger, MD
PS: If you haven’t already, you can subscribe to my free videos Here and check out my live presentations: