Being someone that has suffered from a debilitating rash, I have a lot of empathy and understanding about the issue. Several years ago a rash began to appear on my face and slowly spread to my temples, chin, and scalp. The shedding skin would burn and bleed quite often, making it hard to shower or enjoy my life - not to mention feeling self conscious, especially when working in holistic healing.
I still get the rash depending on foods that I eat, but I now know how to manage it. Wheat, soy, chickpeas, sugar, and oils seem to trigger it. My rash, like any other disease, is rooted in inflammation. It is how my body expresses inflammation. I feel grateful that it's on my face where I can see it and not in my heart, or organs. It is a sign that my body is under distress and, if I don't listen to it, it will get worse and eventually spread to other parts of my body.
Leaky gut syndrome is when the intestinal lining breaks down and allows food to leak through the walls and into the blood. This would-be-harmless food enters the blood and is seen as an intruder. The body sees these food particles as foreign invaders and creates inflammation as an immune response. This ongoing reaction causes inflammatory conditions of the skin (eczema, rashes), pancreas (pancreatitis), the joints (arthritis) and a myriad of other disease rooted in inflammation. It also wreaks havoc on the liver, which forces the toxins and inflammations to be expressed through the skin.
How do we reverse and prevent these conditions?
Listen to your gut!
1) Restore the intestinal lining with non-abrasive foods like oatmeal, beans, and steamed sweet potatoes.
2) Use slippery elm to add mucus and help quickly repair the gut lining.
3) Keep a food journal or work with a holistic practitioner to find out which foods work best and what foods cause inflammation.
3) Use herbs like burdock, dandelion, and chaparral (under supervision of an herbalist) to cleanse the blood and restore health to the liver.
4) Eliminate refined sugars, reduce unrefined sugars, and allow 80% of your diet to come from grains, legumes, vegetables, fruits, nuts, seeds, and seaweeds.
It's been nearly 10 years of working with people nutritionally. I cannot tell you how many hundreds of people have made full recovery, or manage to reduce their inflammation with a proper diet. Just remember to listen to your gut.