The skin condition vitiligo is often best treated through diet management and the most common natural vitiligo treatment involves limiting certain high-risk foods that contribute to the illness. As a result, it can take a bit of planning and cooperation with a dietician or doctor to make sure you are not only getting the right amount of nutrients, but also limiting your exposure to foods that can exacerbate or worsen vitiligo.
This can pose a problem for some patients, who may have a.) powerful cravings for certain foods or b.) supplemental requirements that may be difficult to accommodate. In order to alleviate this problem and supply patients with the best vitiligo treatment for their specific case, finding alternative foods can go a long way.
Oils – usually oils should be avoided for their negative effects in terms of how they work with the body and can worsen pre-existing conditions of vitiligo. However, a natural vitiligo treatment can include other cold-pressed oils (organic if at all possible) that include flaxseed, sunflower, canola, and coconut. In fact, coconut oil’s extremely useful in combatting a variety of anti-oxidant and autoimmune diseases, and has numerous other benefits.
Meats – while beef is the foremost meat available for consumption, people with vitiligo find that other sources of protein can prove to be better supplements. This can include lamb (preferably organic as well, and from New Zealand), but also wild game. However, it should be pointed out that poultry and chicken should also be avoided. Additionally, fish have a lot of health benefits attributed to combatting illnesses related to the skin. Freshwater and cold water fish especially are high in omega-3 fatty acids, such as the Alaskan salmon.
Spices – one complaint that many patients have while undergoing their natural vitiligo treatment is how bland certain foods can taste. We are used to high fat, salt, and sugar content in our foods, which tend to numb our taste-buds. This can be remedied by maintaining a proactive diet, but incorporating any of a variety of spices. Plants like ginger and parsley, as well as rosemary, cilantro, and turmeric can add a touch of flavor and spice to an otherwise drab meal – additionally, many of these herbs like garlic, ginger, and turmeric are proven anti-inflammatories, and can bolster the immune system in order to speed the recovery from most vitiligo cases. All of these herbs and spices can contribute to your well-being on their own, but are most effective when combined in unison – the more the merrier.
Because sweet foods are often the first thing that people crave when starting on a natural vitiligo treatment of dieting, some options are also available to supplement for sweetness. These can include, of course, fruits. Natural fructose is better absorbed by the body and doesn’t have any negative effects on the progression of the disease. However stevia extract (from the stevia plant) can used, as can honey (although try to get unpasteurized honey, as pasteurized honey often undergoes a heating process that can kill of immune-boosting enzymatic properties). Some people prefer to use organic date paste as well. Where salt cravings are concerned, avoid refined forms, including sea salt. Himalayan pink salt is a better choice.
Grains – usually grains of all types should be avoided, however there is one exception and this is wild rice, taken in small amounts. Its high nutrient content and additional elements makes it less harmful than other carbohydrates, however again restraint should be exercised. Stick to small portions.
Water – yes, hydration is important. This has been a point of contention among doctors and patients alike, but a good daily intake of water can heal the immune system and prevent the vitiligo from manifesting further. It is best to avoid mineral water or water that has a lot of additives (for example, flavored water should be avoided, as should water with natural or artificial sweeteners). Charcoal filtered or pure water are the best choices.
Dairy – all dairy products, especially those high in the protein casein, need to be avoided on the total elimination diet. This includes eggs, milk, and cheese. In order to supplement this, it can be useful to switch to another form, and almond milk has proven to be an effective and tasty alternative.
Although all of these supplements can be viewed by themselves as an individual natural vitiligo treatment, it’s important to keep in mind that the epidemiology of vitiligo is very complicated. Often a number of factors can contribute to its onset and manifestation, including pre-existing life-style choices associated with diet, weight, stress levels, and exercise. It is best to consult with your doctor to try and find a reasonable way to accommodate all your preferences and balance them with a schedule that can facilitate recovery.
The Missing Piece of The Puzzle
At this time of writing, I have spent almost 3 months researching & amassed 60+ hours in the library and with various doctors, nutritionist & GPs. There’s one treatment method by David Paltrow, I kept coming across again and again called the “The Vitiligo Miracle.” I have to admit after so much research, I was a bit skeptical at the sounds of the title, but I read through it all anyway and I’m so glad I did.
It would be the perfect addition to anyone starting the Vitiligo Diet and literally gave me the remaining pieces that I needed to move forward with a protocol to help Jane after all these months (and her depression was getting progressive worse prior to this). David and his team of professional nutritionists actually talked via email/phone with Jane and I through a protocol that would work best for her. I will talk more about the protocol and everything we did, but that is for another post.