4 Ways to manage psoriasis flare-ups with Ayurveda

By Dr Sharda Ayurveda In Skin

Your skin is the mirror of your inner health. 

As per Ayurvedic literature, Psoriasis (kitibha) is a disease (roga) that appears on the surface of the skin, but in reality, it is an autoimmune disorder. Autoimmune means that the immunity of the body is malfunctioning and it is damaging healthy cells of the body.  As per Ayurvedic philosophies, kitibha (psoriasis) is mainly caused by mandagni (weak digestive fire). When the food is not digested properly it causes the formation of vishakta padartha (toxins) in the body and they start disturbing the immune system of the body over time. When the problem severely increases, it becomes a disease called Kitibha (psoriasis). 

Early Symptoms of Psoriasis  

Symptoms of Kitibha are:

  • Dried or cracked skin
  • Scales of dead skin cells falling down
  • Rashes
  • Redness and swelling
  • Itchiness and irritation 
  • Joint aches
  • Change in skin color

However, one of the important factors is that this disease is not caused in one day, rather, it slowly spreads in the body. Skin is the largest organ of the body and our liver and kidneys are the major organs responsible for cleansing the body. Whenever these organs malfunction and there is a release of toxins in the body, then these toxins manifest on the surface of the skin.
 
There are various factors that weaken and poison the body over time and this disease causes psoriasis flare-ups. Some of them are:

  • Eating contradictory foods or non-compatible food products causes the formation of vishakta padartha (toxins) in the body and triggers psoriasis. 
  • Suppressing natural urges.
  • Eating beyond the capacity of the stomach or forcibly eating without hunger. 
  • Instantly shifting the body temperature.

As per the Ayurvedic rule of Nidan Parivarjan, these are the triggering factors for psoriasis and they must be eliminated from ahara and vihara (diet and lifestyle). 

Kitibha or Psoriasis can become severe in certain conditions, they are known as flare-ups. Some factors that can cause psoriasis flares are:

  • Itching
  • Scraping
  • Injury
  • Bruise
  • Insect bites
  • Sunburn
  • Dry weather 
  • Chemicals
  • Dirt and Pollution

So how to prevent psoriasis?

Western medications say that the root cause is not known. However, this roga (disease) has been clearly defined as per Ayurvedic texts. Ayurveda has defined the strota (root cause) of this disease and there are various ahara and vihara (diet and lifestyle) changes along with the herbal treatment that can treat kitibha (psoriasis). 

AHARA (DIET)

  • Fiber

Eat foods that are rich in fiber as they will pass smoothly from the digestive system and not stick in the walls of the intestines. It will aid in the process of removing toxins and cleaning the digestive tract and blood. 

  • Liquids

You must have more and more liquids so that your body clears off all the toxins in the form of urine.  You can have both vegetables or fruit juice. Drink at least 8-10 glasses of water or other liquids throughout the day. It will keep the skin hydrated. 

  • Vitamins

A deficiency of various vitamins like vitamins A, C, D, and B12 is responsible for this problem, so a patient must take loads of green veggies, carrots, and herbs to fulfill this deficiency. 

  • Fruits

Fruits are rich in water content and they help in flushing toxins from the body. They also provide the necessary nutrients and are best to eat in sugar cravings. They contain fructose which fulfills the sugar needs of the body. 

  • Dry fruits

All types of dry fruits must be consumed after soaking them for at least 10-12 hours. All of these are rich in nutrients and essential oils which help in repairing skin damage and making the body stronger.   

  • Salads

Add salads to your diet. Raw vegetables like cucumber, ash gourd, carrots, snake gourd, beetroot, pumpkin, or lettuce are rich in nutrients and they also contain a lot of fiber, which cleans the digestive system. Make sure to add lemon juice for better digestion and absorption. 

  • Soups

Psoriasis patients must take easy-to-digest and nutritious meals. So soups are the best meal choice for psoriasis patients. They will cleanse the body and fulfill the water requirement. 

HERBAL REMEDIES

There are various plants and herbs available in nature that can help in healing the skin. These remedies can be used when psoriasis flares up.

  • Coconut oil

It has healing properties and this can be applied to the infected area. It is very good for managing dryness and adding to the natural oils of the skin. Patients can also add 2-3 drops of this oil to the navel at night. If done regularly, it can cause a great difference. 

  • Turmeric

Turmeric can be mixed with cow’s desi ghee or honey and it can be applied to the affected area. A herbal tea can also be prepared and drink it along with honey first thing in the morning. 

  • Aloe vera

Fresh or organic aloe vera gel can be applied to the affected area. Mixing it with coconut oil will be even better. It can be applied on the affected area for around 30 minutes to 1 hour and then washed off with lukewarm water. Aloe Vera can also be consumed as juice or in the form of vegetables. 

  • Neem

It is a key herb of Ayurveda that is known to clean the blood. It has titka rasa (bitter) and removes all the toxins from the body. It can be used to make an herbal paste by mixing neem powder, sandalwood, and rose water and applied to the affected area. Neem oil can also be used. 

  • Sandalwood

It is a calming herb that has been used for ages and it is commonly applied on the forehead in India. It can be mixed with turmeric, honey, curd, and rose water and applied on the skin for some time. Then wash it off with lukewarm water. It can be done regularly for effective results. 

  • Roses

Organic rose water or rose powder mixed with sandalwood and honey can be applied to the affected area. This also gives the benefits of aromatherapy. Drinking rose and fennel herbal tea will also detoxify the body from the inside. 

  • Giloy

It is a well-known herb that can balance all three doshas and it keeps the skin moisturized and nourished. It can be consumed as herbal tea or tablets for purifying the blood. Also, its oil or herbal paste can be applied to the skin and washed off with lukewarm water.

VIHARA (LIFESTYLE)

  • Sunlight

Psoriasis patients usually have a Vitamin D deficiency, so it is a must for them to sit in sunlight. Early morning sunrays are extremely beneficial and the patient must wear minimum clothes and loose cotton clothes. It increases blood circulation and helps remove toxins from the body.

  • Shower 

Psoriasis patients must take a bath with sour curd and then wash it off with lukewarm water. It will hydrate the skin and heal the wounds. It is preferred to take a bath according to the weather conditions. Take a bath with lukewarm water in winter and with normal water in summer. 

  • Steam

It is extremely good to take steam for kitibha (psoriasis) patients. It helps in opening the clogged pores and removing dirt particles or toxins. Adding Ayurvedic oils like neem oil or rose water will increase cleansing and detoxification.

  • Hygiene

Staying clean is the first responsibility of psoriasis patients because they are much more vulnerable to infection or bacteria and these problems can make the situation much worse. So they must practice strict personal hygiene and not share towels, brushes, or clothes. They should avoid dirty surroundings and sweating. 

  • Oxygen

The skin detoxifies and breathes through pores and when it is in the natural environment. Do not stay in the air conditioner for the whole day as the skin will breathe CFC (chemicals) and it will further damage the skin. Staying in clean and oxygenated places on the other hand will help in healing. 

  • Sweating

The skin releases toxins in the form of sweat. The clogged pores of the skin become cleaner and the number of healthy cells in the layers of the skin increases. The stink in the sweat is a clear sign of toxins in the body and they are released by sweating.

  • Moisturize

It is a natural thing for psoriasis patients to have dry skin and they must use external moisturizers to fulfill the oil needs of the skin. They must apply Ayurvedic creams or oils on the skin after taking a bath.

 

MANAS (MENTAL HEALTH) 

It is a disease that can be caused by an unhealthy mental state. Negative emotions can disturb the endocrine system of the body and there can be an imbalance. These emotions can trigger psoriasis flare-up. Such emotions are:

  • Overthinking
  • Anxiety
  • Depression
  • Anger 
  • Stress 
  • Trauma
  • Inferiority complex
  • Suppression

So how to prevent psoriasis flare-ups?

It is very important to keep a calm mind as it will make the endocrine system work nicely and there will be harmony in the body. As per Ayurvedic texts, aromatherapy, massage, and meditation are the best techniques to calm your mind. 

AVOID

Along with adding healthy things, it is equally important to remove unhealthy factors from your lifestyle.

  • Exclude wheat from your diet because it is the main cause of autoimmune diseases in the body. 
  • Avoid dairy products because they are not digested properly and will increase the formation of toxins in the blood.
  • Especially do not eat sugars or refined flour because they are not properly digested and make the blood dirty. 
  • Do not consume non-vegetarian foods because they are very hard to digest and when the body’s digestion is already weak, the problem will increase further. 
  • Do not eat stale food as it is not digested properly and gives no nutrition to the body. 
  • Do not drink stimulants like tea or coffee as they increase the number of toxins in the body. 
  • Avoid scratching and if it feels like scratching apply some herbal ointment. It will reduce the irritation and soothe the problem.
  • Prevent skin injuries.
  • Do not expose your skin to extreme cold or hot weather. 
  • Avoid alcohol and smoking 

Psoriasis treatment by Ayurveda primarily cleanses the body and releases toxins. Some patients may experience repeated motions (increased urge to go to the toilet) after taking ayurvedic medicines because the body is naturally releasing toxins. If the body is damaged over time, it will take time to heal and one must be patient if they want to heal the body. Chemical medicines can suppress the disease but the root cause will still be there. This is why Ayurveda is the best choice for psoriasis treatment. 

Article By:

Dr Sharda Ayurveda

At Dr. Sharda Ayurveda emphasis is made on treating the patients with the power of Ayurveda and traveling along with them in the path of natural and safe healing. The satisfaction and recovery of our patients is our utmost priority.

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