Best Fruits For Psoriasis

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The Best Fruits For Psoriasis. Psoriasis can be cured in a matter of a few weeks with the regular consumption of certain fruits and vegetables. These fruits and vegetables contain vitamins, minerals, and enzymes which directly affect your skin health; improving it in just weeks if consumed on a regular basis. Check out more details about the best fruits for psoriasis below.

Easy Snacks for Your Anti-Psoriasis Diet

These anti-inflammatory treats will satisfy your cravings, boost your overall health, and possibly reduce your risk of a psoriasis flare.

These anti-inflammatory treats will satisfy your cravings, boost your overall health, and possibly reduce your risk of a psoriasis flare.

If you live with psoriasis you may find that certain foods cause your immune system to “misfire,” triggering the inflammation that can result in those all-too-familiar skin patches.

“I do believe patients who tell me that dietary and lifestyle changes affect their skin,” says Jessica Krant, MD, a dermatologist at Laser & Skin Surgery Center of New York and an assistant clinical professor of dermatology at SUNY Downstate Medical Center in Brooklyn, New York.

Still, the scientific evidence linking diet and psoriasis flares is inconclusive. “Some people say gluten makes symptoms worse, others say that sugar and sweets cause flare-ups. But we don’t have great data to confirm that,” says Delamo Bekele, MBBS, a rheumatologist and an assistant professor of medicine at the Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minnesota.

But it’s a good bet that people with psoriasis will benefit from a Mediterranean diet that emphasizes fruits and vegetables, legumes, whole grains, fish, nuts, and extra-virgin olive oil. A study published in September 2018 in JAMA Dermatology found that participants who followed a Mediterranean diet had milder symptoms of psoriasis than those who didn’t.

Plus, the Mediterranean diet may help you lose excess pounds if you’re overweight, which can also ease psoriasis symptoms, according to Dr. Bekele.

The snacks below all focus on anti-inflammatory ingredients. Reach for them when you have a craving — and rest easy knowing you are nourishing yourself in the best way possible.

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Pineapple With Walnut Topping

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When hunger hits, snack on satiating, unprocessed foods like nuts.

Walnuts are a good source of omega-3 fatty acids, which have been found to reduce inflammation, according to the National Psoriasis Foundation (NPF). Interestingly, according to the NPF, some people with psoriasis have too few omega-3s and too many omega-6s, which tend to increase inflammation.

As for pineapples, an enzyme in the fruit called bromelain is thought to have its own anti-inflammatory properties, according to a study published September 2016 in the journal Biomedical Reports. (Bonus: Bromelain also has cancer-fighting properties.) 

For a super-simple snack, top 1 cup fresh, unsweetened pineapple chunks with 1 tablespoon chopped walnuts.

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Oatmeal With Blueberries and Flaxseed

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Ground flaxseed contains about 2.5 grams of alpha-linolenic acid (ALA), a type of omega-3 fatty acid — and that’s more than twice the daily minimum recommendation for women. “Flaxseed is also anti-inflammatory,” says Bekele.

Blueberries are another superfood. A study published in Advances in Nutrition in March 2020 confirms that the berries have anti-inflammatory properties.

For a filling breakfast or afternoon snack, combine 1 cup cooked oatmeal, 1 tablespoon ground flaxseed, and ¾ cup blueberries.

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Pumpkin Butter on a Rice Wafer or Roasted Pumpkin Seeds

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Pumpkin seed butter is a great plant-based source of inflammation-fighting ALAs, says the natural-healthcare practitioner Mark Mincolla, PhD. For a smart snack option, he recommends spreading the butter on an organic rice cake and topping with a sugar-free, all-fruit spread.

Pumpkin seeds are both heart-healthy and anti-inflammatory, according to a review published November 2020 in the journal Scientific African. Toss whole pumpkin seeds with olive oil and roast at 325 degrees for about 30 minutes, then finish with a sprinkle of garlic powder or Cajun seasoning for a flavor boost.

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Hummus and Vegetables

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Antioxidants, found in abundance in different kinds of produce, can also help fight inflammation. For a hefty dose, assemble a variety of vegetables — carrot sticks, pea pods, celery, sliced cucumbers — and serve with hummus for dipping.

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Papaya-Avocado Salad

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This snack-size salad features papaya, a tropical fruit rich in the antioxidant beta-carotene, and avocado, which is chock-full of antioxidants and omega-3 fatty acids.

Dice one papaya and one avocado and combine with ¾ cup sliced jicama and 2 tablespoons toasted walnuts. Drizzle with 2 tablespoons of low-fat raspberry vinaigrette.

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Trail Mix with Pumpkin Seeds and Dried Cherries

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For a psoriasis-friendly snack, try making your own trail mix with pumpkin seeds and walnuts, along with dried, unsweetened fruit like blueberries, strawberries, figs, and mangoes. You may also want to throw in some dried tart cherries, which are rich in anthocyanins, a type of antioxidant. A study published in Nutrients in October 2017 found that a diet high in anthocyanins may counter inflammation (not to mention obesity).

Psoriasis: Foods That Help, Foods That Hurt

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Eat a Healthy Diet

If you have psoriasis, what you eat and drink may make a difference in how you feel. Scientists don’t know for sure if following a specific diet or staying away from certain foods can clear up your flares. But a healthy diet high in fruits, vegetables, lean protein, and whole grains can boost your overall well-being and may ease symptoms for some people.    

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Eat More: Dark Leafy Greens

These are loaded with antioxidants, which protect your cells against inflammation. That may help with your psoriasis symptoms. Plus, leafy greens are low in calories and high in fiber, so they’re diet-friendly. Try tossing arugula in a salad, kale or collard greens in a soup, and chard or spinach into an omelet.

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Eat More: Fatty Fish

Their omega-3 fats can help with inflammation and give your immune system a boost, so it’s a good idea to put fish on the menu at least twice a week. According to one study, people who ate 6 ounces of fatty fish a week saw their psoriasis symptoms get better. And these healthy fats may lower your chances of heart disease, too. Go with cold-water fish like salmon, albacore tuna, mackerel, sardines, herring, and lake trout.

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Eat More: Whole Grains

Fiber-rich whole grains can ease inflammation. They also can help you slim down, and research shows that shedding pounds can help with your psoriasis symptoms. Choose whole-grain breads, cereals, and pastas, and brown or wild rice. Labels like “multigrain” can be misleading, so check that a whole grain is the first ingredient listed. Bulgur, quinoa, and barley are other tasty options.

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Eat More: Olive Oil

Not all cooking oils are created equal. Olive oil has anti-inflammatory omega-3 fats. It’s also a staple of the Mediterranean diet. Research shows that people who eat that way — focusing on fruits, vegetables, fish, beans, and whole grains, along with olive oil — have less severe psoriasis. Not a fan? Nut and avocado oils also have these healthy fats. Use them in salad dressings and sautés.

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Eat More: Fruit

Satisfy your sweet tooth a different way. Fruits have antioxidants, fiber, and other vitamins that fight inflammation. For the biggest boost, eat a variety of colors. Each has its own mix of nutrients. Berries, cherries, and apples have antioxidants called polyphenols, while oranges and melons are high in vitamin C. Pineapple has an anti-inflammatory enzyme called bromelain.

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Eat More: Beans

These are good sources of protein, fiber, and antioxidants. They can help keep your weight in check and ease the inflammation in your body, and research suggests that a vegetarian diet can help with psoriasis symptoms. Try swapping them for meat once in a while: Use them in place of ground beef in chili or tacos. You can also add mashed beans to burgers and sandwiches.

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Eat More: Nuts

They pack a lot of inflammation-fighting power in a small package. And they’re loaded with nutrients, healthy fats, and fiber. Toss a handful of nuts on a salad, or have them as a snack. Just watch how many you eat: A 1-ounce serving has 160 to 200 calories.

5 Foods That May Be Beneficial and 5 That Probably Aren’t

While there’s no cure-all diet for psoriasis, avoiding or embracing certain foods may help limit your flare-ups.

If you’re a psoriasis sufferer, then you’re already well aware that those red, itchy, and sometimes painful patches of scaly skin can be triggered by just about anything.

Skin injuries, cigarette smoking, illness, or changes in the weather are just a few things that are thought to provoke attacks, but what about food? Does your diet play a part in psoriasis flare-ups? And maybe more important—can changing it help prevent them?

psoriasis diet

“It depends a lot on the patient and their history,” Ashley Wentworth, MD, adult and pediatric dermatologist at Mayo Clinic in Jacksonville, Florida, tells Health. Everyone has different dietary requirements based on their own personal needs, she says. “But we do know that eating a healthy diet makes people feel better and reduces stress, and that can impact their psoriasis.”

Can what you eat improve or worsen your psoriasis symptoms?

Overall, the jury is still out on whether eating certain foods, or avoiding others, can have a significant impact on the frequency or severity of psoriasis.

A review of studies published in JAMA Dermatology examined whether dietary changes might make different in people with psoriasis or psoriatic arthritis. The findings suggests that people who are overweight or obese may be able to reduce the severity of their psoriasis symptoms by adopting a low-calorie diet.

“We do know that psoriasis has been linked to obesity,” says Dr. Wentworth. “We often encourage weight loss for patients who are not at the weight that has been established as a goal for them with the assistance of their primary care provider.”

Per the JAMA Dermatology review, psoriasis patients with celiac disease may find that avoiding foods containing gluten may be helpful in managing their symptoms. “We have done studies to show that if someone has celiac disease antibodies, a gluten-free diet could potentially benefit their psoriasis,” says Dr. Wentworth.

But while there may not be one, cure-all, psoriasis treatment diet, evaluating what you eat is still a critical step in managing the disease says Victoria Yunez Behm, CNS, LDN, manager of nutrition science for the American Nutrition Association.

“Many descriptions of psoriasis focus on causes and conditions that are genetic or environmental in nature but gloss over nutrition or only mention the possibility of foods as triggers,” Behm explains. “However, nutrition determines so much of our internal environment and the health of the barriers that protect us, like the lining of the gastrointestinal tract.”

What to limit or avoid if you’ve got psoriasis

Because psoriasis is an immune-mediated disease, it’s not just limited to the skin; it’s systemic. So, Behm explains, it makes sense to choose foods that support your overall heath and avoid those that don’t.

Here are a few to consider limiting in your diet:

Anything ultra-processed

Often loaded with sugar, sodium, and other additives, ultra-processed foods are high in saturated and trans fats, and should be avoided says Bridget Shields, MD, assistant professor, Department of Dermatology, University of Wisconsin-Madison.

“Unhealthy fats are found in partially hydrogenated oils or excessively processed foods,” Dr. Shields tells Health. “These are important foods for patients with psoriasis to avoid when possible.”

According to a 2018 review in Current Obesity Reports, examples of ultra-processed foods include:

  • pastries, cookies, and crackers
  • ice cream
  • candy
  • processed meat
  • breakfast cereal
  • soft drinks
  • prepared meals

Red meat and dairy

According to Dr. Shields, certain animal products, like red and processed meats and dairy, can be pro-inflammatory because they’re high in trans and omega-6 fats and may be converted to an unsaturated fatty acid called “arachidonic acid.”

“It is important to highlight that not all fats are created equal,” she explains. “Omega-3 fatty acids, as found in mackerel, salmon, sea bass, hemp seeds, and chia seeds, are thought to be anti-inflammatory and omega-6 fatty acids may also have some beneficial systemic effects as well. The safest way to consume omega-6 fats is probably from whole foods, such as walnuts, sunflower seeds, and pumpkin seeds.”

High-glycemic index foods

The glycemic index measures how quickly a certain food raises the glucose (or sugar) levels in your blood. As you might expect, foods ranking high on the glycemic index (GI) tend to increase blood sugar levels, and maintaining a diet of high-GI foods can lead to a variety of health issues, including increased risk of cardiovascular disease.

Certain high-glycemic foods may also “worsen psoriatic disease when eaten in large quantities for extended periods of time,” says Dr. Shields ,and because of that, people with psoriasis may be better off avoiding them. Some examples of high-glycemic foods are:

  • white bread
  • bagels
  • white rice
  • fruit juices (that don’t contain fiber)

Nightshades

“Nightshades are a class of vegetables that some people can react to,” Julie Zumpano, RD, a registered dietitian with the Department of Preventive Cardiology at Cleveland Clinic, tells Health. “Specifically for psoriatic arthritis, nightshades can be a trigger.”

Nightshades contain alkaloids, a class of compounds primarily found in plants that can lead to psoriasis flare-ups, per Cleveland Clinic.

According to a small, national survey of psoriasis patients’ dietary habits described in the journal Dermatology and Therapy, more than half of respondents reported skin improvements after reducing their intake of nightshade veggies.

Examples of nightshades include:

  • tomatoes
  • potatoes (excluding sweet potatoes)
  • eggplant
  • peppers (hot and sweet)
  • certain spices made from peppers (cayenne, paprika)

Alcohol

Alcohol technically isn’t a food, but it still makes the list because of its link to both initial onset of psoriasis, as well as possibly contributing to flare-ups. “We may not have all the science to explain it, but we do see some people can flare with psoriasis if they do have a heavy alcohol intake on a daily basis,” says Dr. Wentworth. “That can cause flaring or could potentially be an initial trigger.”

It can also render certain psoriasis treatment medications less effective, she says, since the liver must do double duty: metabolizing alcohol and systemic medicines people take to manage psoriasis. “If you are having a heavy alcohol intake, that’s going to put a strain on the liver and then it may make have more side effects with these medications.”

What to eat if you have psoriasis

While there’s no single, “best” diet for psoriasis, a Mediterranean diet is not a bad choice.

Dr. Shields cites large trials demonstrating a wealth of benefits for people following a Mediterranean diet, including reductions in markers of inflammation, decreased body weight, and lower insulin production. “All factors that should, in theory, benefit patients with psoriasis,” she says.

Zumpano says that the Mediterranean diet is a good diet to try, but like anything, suggests giving it a month or two to see how you respond. “There’s trial and error,” she says. “So, if you’re going to try a diet to ‘cure your psoriasis,’ I would do a very whole foods, heavily-plant-based, clean diet, then I would track your flare-ups and see if there was anything in your diet that may have stimulated it.”

Here are some foods to include in your diet:

Omega-3 fatty acids

According to the Cleveland Clinic, omega-3 fatty acids are an essential fat that the body doesn’t produce on its own. When added as part of a healthy diet, omega-3 fatty acids can help improve cardiovascular health, raise “good” cholesterol, and help lower pressure, among other benefits.

The upside for people with psoriasis? Behm says numerous clinical studies confirm the benefits of omega-3s for reducing inflammation that accompanies immune-mediated inflammatory diseases like psoriasis.

Foods’s high in omega-3s include:

  • salmon
  • herring
  • sardines
  • shellfish
  • flax seed
  • chia seeds
  • walnuts
  • soybeans

Fruits and vegetables

“Vegetables are excellent anti-inflammatory foods, as are many fruits, especially those that are on the lower glycemic index and have higher fiber content,” says Dr. Shields.

Behm recommends getting creative and eating a “rainbow of fresh plant foods each day,” especially the colorful ones, which contain phytonutrients, or compounds that have anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties. Examples include:

  • dark, leafy greens
  • yellow beets
  • pumpkin, and other winter squashes
  • blueberries
  • purple carrots
  • radishes

Healthy fats

“It’s important to note that as we are learning more and more about psoriasis, we are learning it can be linked to things like diabetes, high blood pressure, high lipids, or fats in the blood,” says Dr. Wentworth.

Dietary fat is essential to your health. What matters is where you get it from. Saturated fat, found in things like baked and fried foods, can lead to increased “bad” cholesterol, while unsaturated fat can help improve cholesterol levels and decrease your risk of heart attack and stroke.

“There are many wonderful foods to embrace if you’ve got psoriasis,” says Behm, and healthy fats are among them. According to Behm, examples of healthy fats include:

  • avocado
  • coconut oil
  • cold-pressed extra virgin olive oil
  • olives
  • low-mercury, wild-caught fish like wild Alaskan salmon

High-quality proteins

Psoriatic disease is associated with inflammation, and eating foods to help reduce it can be beneficial in managing psoriasis, according to the National Psoriasis Foundation, which says that a healthy eating regimen that includes proteins like fish and beans may help reduce the impact of symptoms or how often they occur.

When it comes to those proteins, Behm suggests opting for “high-quality” sources, whether they’re animal or plant-based. Examples of proteins include:

  • cage-free eggs
  • wild fish
  • beans
  • lentils
  • nuts (almonds and walnuts)
  • fatty fish, like salmon, mackerel, and tuna

Vitamin D

Vitamin D is the main ingredient in two, topical prescription medications for psoriasis, and according to Dr. Shields, they work well in helping treat the skin. Based on that, it seems logical that taking vitamin D as an oral supplement could also benefit sufferers. Unfortunately, there’s not a lot of research to back the theory.

“If you look at the data [for] vitamin D supplementation in psoriatic patients, we really don’t have good evidence that high-dose vitamin D supplementation is helpful,” says Dr. Shields.

That said, however, it may be beneficial to add it to your diet naturally and according to the National Psoriasis Foundation, the safest way to do that is through food. Good sources of vitamin D include:

  • cod liver oil
  • salmon
  • mackerel
  • tuna fish (canned, in water)
  • orange juice (fortified with vitamin D)
  • eggs

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