How to Permanently Heal Eczema, Psoriasis and Other Autoimmune Diseases
From Sufferer to Survivor - A Gun to My Head
I am writing this for sufferers of psoriasis, eczema and other autoimmune disorders. I know how much torture you are enduring, because I've been where you are. However you found this article, I want to give you my knowledge and experience so that you can use it to heal yourself. You deserve a normal life.
I have attempted to write this article several times, yet never knew the best way to begin.
I've never felt this strongly about any topic, so I was worried that anything I wrote would come off as a rant. Luckily though, I finally know how to convey the message I wish so badly to convey.
Let's start with my story.
Most people develop an autoimmune condition later in life, such as eczema or psoriasis. However, due to birth complications and heredity factors, I was born with a body rash. It didn't take long for the rash to go away, but it came back when I was a toddler and settled on my heels and toes. There it stayed for about 12 years, until it grew rampantly out of control.
I've had a great life so far, which I look back on with fondness. However, during most of my life, I was plagued by one constant annoyance - the itchy rash on my feet that would not go away. We got prescription creams and lotions, but nothing seemed to work. Eventually, we settled on waiting, hoping I would grow out of it. Obviously, that day never came.
Starting the Downward Spiral
In my senior year of high school, things in my life began to slip. My academic career was suffering, the stress of SAT's and impending college was becoming a thorn in my side, and my life was taking a direction I did not want it to go.
The rash began to spread. Little patches appeared on my legs, arms and chest, but I did not have the time to worry about the condition. My family thought it may have been a gluten allergy, so I cut back on grains. This seemed to help for a time, until I finally graduated from high school and college rolled around.
College was my undoing. I have explained why further down the article.
During my freshman year, the rash's intensity increased 200% and it spread to 70% of my body. However, despite much confusion and frustration, it was still manageable. I survived the year, and it appeared to get slightly better over that summer, but it did not last.
Out of Control
My sophomore year of college was hell on Earth. The intensity of the rash doubled from the previous year and it spread to 95% of my entire body. At one point, the only white skin on my body was my spinal chord, palms, bottoms of feet, and a small portion of my inner thighs. The rest was covered in a red, angry, inflamed rash.
Slowly, over the course of the two semesters, it coated me. I felt my sanity begin to unravel. As my friends have told me, they noticed how much I kept to myself and how much I seemed to be lost in my own world.
The rash was relentless. It was extremely rough. I remember taking my hand, sliding it across my shoulder, and feeling sandpaper on my palm instead of skin. At times, the rash oozed fluid that would soak an entire tissue, and it always felt as if it was on fire.
Because my skin was so rough and leathery, it restricted my movement. Every move I made gave me pain because it made my skin less pliable. Although, by far, the most maddening thing was the itching.
The itching was horrifying. It was as if my body was covered with mosquito bites, and it literally felt as it I had to scratch through my skin to reach my bones. There was never one moment of relief from it. I slept two or three hours every single night, for months on end. I woke up with skin flakes and blood on the sheets. Scratch marks streaked my arms, legs, torso, shoulders and back. Every moment was not spent on petty school work, but on researching anything and everything on how to cure the condition. Everything failed. Traditional doctors, dermatologists, specialists, and allergists did nothing.
This is only a brief description of the symptoms. I cannot possibly convey how much suffering I endured during those couple years. Suffice to say that one day, it got to the point where I could hardly take it anymore. I was alone in my apartment's kitchen, and I took a knife and held it to my wrist. Every ounce of me wanted to end the suffering. I felt that there was no escape, no light at the end of the tunnel, and every moment I lived felt like a cruel punishment.
Needless to say, I realized how heartbroken my friends and family would have been if I had gone through with the act. I put down the knife and decided to outlast the year, though suicide was a constant thought that kept recurring to me.
The summer came and, as if a miracle had struck, the rash went completely away. It was as if I had never had a rash in the first place, and for a couple months, I lived a perfectly normal and happy life for the first time in years.
At the End of My Rope
A week before I returned to college for my junior year, the rash returned on my feet and legs. As the year began, once again it spread until it covered 60% of my body. Seven weeks into the semester, I dropped out of college and had a complete nervous breakdown. I was finally beaten.
I called my mom, in absolute tears, and I said that I needed to come home or I was going to slit my wrists.
The very next day, she came to get me. It got progressively worse over the next year. I felt as if I had a gun to my head, that I needed to cure myself or be condemned to live a miserable life. I saw other doctors and specialists, but none had any answer that was helpful. I got the traditional "that's psoriasis, there's nothing you can do" type of answer, which I refused to settle for.
Then, in July of 2014, my mom gave me a doctor's brochure that she got from a lady at her health food store. I was skeptical, of course, but was willing to try anything.
What followed was what turned me from a sufferer into a survivor.
Discovering the Truth and the Root Causes
The doctor I saw was called an internist, and he had done six years at a medical university of alternative medicine. I kid you not, he summed up everything I had researched and suffered in my entire life, within 30 minutes.
It was incredible, and I left his office that day a completely changed man.
He gave me a panel of blood tests, and I left with three home tests. The tests were as follows:
- CDSA 2.0 Test (Comprehensive Digestive Stool Analysis) (stool home test from Genova Diagnostics)
- Intestinal Permeability Test (urine home test from Genova Diagnostics)
- Adrenocortex Stress Profile Test (saliva home test from Genova Diagnostics)
- IGE/IGG Allergy Panel Test (in-office blood test)
- Thyroid Levels Test (in-office blood test)
Over my next couple visits, the results of the tests came back and I finally learned everything that was wrong with my health.
My immune system was an absolute train wreck.
- I had a condition known as intestinal permeability, also known as Leaky Gut Syndrome. I have explained this further down the article.
- Because of the intestinal permeability, my allergies were literally off the charts. The normal levels of the IGE/IGG allergy test were 87. Mine were over 2000. No, that is not a typo; in a test where a level of one-hundred is considered high, my levels were over two-thousand.
- My thyroid was underactive.
- My adrenal glands were dysfunctional, spiking cortisol all the time.
- Because of the spiking cortisol and high allergies, my histamine levels were off the charts.
- I was very vitamin D deficient.
- I had a bacterial infection in my intestines called Klebsiella.
- And because of the state of my immune system, I had multiple yeast infections showing on my body.
We immediately set about healing all of these conditions.
What Are Psoriasis and Eczema?
Psoriasis and eczema are not "incurable diseases." In fact, they are not diseases at all. That's why every single "clinical trial" has been unsuccessful up to this point; they only treat the skin, not the origin of the issue.
These conditions are only symptoms of a deeper problem, the problem being your intestinal health 99% of the time. Here is the process of how your intestinal health affects your skin (from my doctor, other doctors in his field, my test results, and the test results of thousands of people before me):
- Your intestine is lined with a thin layer of protective cells. This layer contains 80% of your immune system.
- Certain factors damage this layer of cells (high levels of stress, gluten, heavy metals, allergens, environmental factors, or other harsh toxins). Earlier, I stated that college was my undoing. In this, I meant that the massive stress levels associated with college had an extremely negative effect on my intestinal health.
- When this happens, gaps (microscopic holes) appear within the layer, which allow waste particles to slip into your bloodstream. This is the process of intestinal permeability.
- This causes an inflammatory response throughout your body. Your immune system becomes dysfunctional and begins to work against you.
- Because microscopic food particles start to slip through the gaps, your immune system sees those foods as invaders. The reason my allergy levels were over 2000 is because my body was seeing so many foods as invaders. I was allergic to 95% of all foods I had ever eaten.
- Cortisol (the stress hormone) gets released from your adrenal glands when stressful situations arise. This causes more inflammation within your intestines, which causes the gaps to separate further.
- All this inflammation caused by cortisol, allergies and the permeability causes massive histamine spikes.
- Histamine causes itching of the skin. You scratch, which causes that area of your skin to produce more histamine. In a person with normal immune health, that histamine dissipates quickly. However, in a person with mass inflammation and immune issues, that histamine does not dissipate.
- The histamine builds and builds. The skin becomes inflamed, and a rash results. As long as the internal inflammation never gets healed, the rash never goes away. It only spreads and gets worse, which causes the conditions people refer to as psoriasis and eczema.
The intestines, adrenal glands and thyroid are a trinity. They all work together, and when one falls, the other two are not far to follow. Because of genetics, I have never had great thyroid or intestinal health. Because of this, when my adrenal glands started pumping out extra cortisol due to stress, the health of my intestines and thyroid decreased further.
The reason my rash went completely away during the summer of 2013 was because I had no stress. The cortisol in my body was not spiking, thus was not causing any internal inflammation. This depleted the histamine, and the rash went away. Interestingly enough, I could eat whatever I wanted during that time period, with no negative effects. However, everyone is different, and intestinal permeability affects people in many different ways.
As soon as college started approaching and stress began to build up in my system, the inflammation brought back the rash. Considering this, the intestinal lining needs to be healed in order for the condition to be healed completely.
How to Heal Leaky Gut Syndrome and Autoimmune Disorders
Intestinal permeability, or Leaky Gut Syndrome, is the root cause of most psoriasis and eczema cases. The first time I went to see my internist and showed him the rash, he even told me flat out, "When I look at you, I see intestinal permeability."
In other cases, the problem could be Celiac Disease, which is a genetic inability to process grain. My doctor told me about one of his patients who cut gluten completely out of his life, and his psoriasis went away. The only way to uncover the culprit is to get tested, which is why this is my number one recommendation to start healing your gut.
Please note, I am not a doctor. I cannot offer any kind of professional advice. I am simply a person who has gone through a lot of suffering to get where I am today, and I want to help people change their lives. For this reason, please rely on the advice and recommendations of your internal medicine doctor.
- You don't know where you're going if you don't have a map. This is why I was unsuccessful trying to self-diagnose myself during those first four years. As soon as I found someone who could give me the right tests and interpret them for me, I found out exactly what was wrong with me and could act accordingly. Try Googling "alternative medicine clinic," "internist," "integrative medicine," or "naturopath" in your area. This is the one thing you must do, above anything else. See a doctor who works with healing your internal health. DO NOT see a dermatologist, a general practitioner, or any other specialist. Take it from me, they are a WASTE OF TIME AND MONEY.
- If your internal medicine doctor is good, they will know which tests to give you. If they do not know, either find someone else or request the tests I have listed previously.
- For skin lubrication and moisturization, apply pure, cold-pressed castor oil to the rash. I can't imagine where I would be today if I did not use this. It cuts down on inflammation and itching, and it makes the skin much more pliable. Use it on a small part of your body first, in case you get an allergic reaction.
- Organic probiotics, digestive enzymes, and the amino acid L-glutamine help with healing the intestinal lining. (No, L-glutamine is not related to gluten. They are two completely different things.)
- Quercetin helps immensely with reducing histamine levels.
- Reduce stress and gluten consumption as much as possible, to reduce further damage to the intestinal lining.
- Reduce scratching as much as possible, to cut down on the histamine that is produced within the skin. Something I've realized during these last few years is that the rash follows scratching; if I don't scratch, there is no rash. Period.
Take these steps in order to start healing your intestinal lining and your body rash. Although, as I stated above, the one step you absolutely must take is to find a doctor who specializes in internal healing.
Where I Am Today
At the moment, I am 22 years old and feel like a normal person again. I have been seeing this internal medicine doctor for a year, and my condition has improved 98%.
I have had some breakouts every now and then. My skin is mostly white, but it will get splotchy from time to time. I scratch absentmindedly when it gets itchy, but I am trying to cut down on it as much as I can. The rash gets better or worse depending on what I'm eating and how much stress I have at the time. However, it is clear that I will never again descend into the horrible nightmare that was the past 4 years of my life. I am working on healing myself every single day, and I know that the condition will heal completely over time.
I have written this article as a beacon of hope for people just like me who need help. I can't tell you how many hours I spent researching and suffering in silence. To be completely honest, it's mostly a blur these days. It was an incredibly dark, traumatizing experience, and I want to do anything I can to help people avoid all that misery.
Or, maybe you're experiencing that misery right now, and you just need it to end. Either way, I hope this article helped you in some way. Please comment below if you have any questions, or if you just want to share your experience.
Please remember, Rome was not built in a day. It takes time for these conditions to heal. I just want to put you on the right path that guarantees the most success in the shortest time possible.
And also remember, if you are suffering in the worst way right now ... you are not alone. It may seem like you're the unlucky one who was cursed in some way, but that's not the reality of the situation. Not at all. Millions of people have these exact same problems, and thankfully, the world is beginning to notice.
Find an internal medicine doctor. Get the tests. Heal yourself. Don't listen to any naysayers who get in your way. From one rash sufferer to another, you can do this. Never give up, and never settle for anything less than completely clear skin.
I wish you all the best in the world, whenever you may read this =)
Your friend in time,