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The Healing Power of Herbs for Eczema

Updated: Apr 18

Eczema, or atopic dermatitis, is a chronic inflammatory skin condition characterized by red, itchy, and inflamed skin. While there is no quick fix for eczema, a holistic approach that includes lifestyle and dietary adjustments and using natural remedies like alterative herbs can significantly improve symptoms and quality of life.

Calendula flowers being gently placed on top of a healing skin salve as it begins to harden, harnessing the soothing and anti-inflammatory properties of this powerful herb for skin health.
calendula skin salve

Eczema is a complex skin condition often influenced by internal imbalances and external factors. Addressing these underlying issues is crucial for effective management. Let's explore how herbalists approach eczema holistically:

Internal Imbalances and Eczema—Herbalists view eczema as a sign of internal imbalances, including digestive issues, immune system dysfunction, and nutrient deficiencies. These imbalances can lead to skin inflammation and irritation, which is characteristic of eczema.

Gut Health- The gut's health is paramount in eczema management. Herbalists focus on healing the gut lining and balancing the gut microbiome. Herbs like Slippery Elm and Marshmallow root are used for their soothing and healing properties on the gut lining.

Liver Support- The liver plays a crucial role in detoxification, which is essential in managing eczema. Herbalists may recommend herbs like Dandelion root and Milk Thistle to support the liver's detoxification pathways.

Immune Modulation- Modulating the immune system is key to reducing inflammation and allergic responses that contribute to eczema. Herbs like Astragalus and Reishi mushroom are used to support immune function and reduce inflammation.

Stress Management- Stress is a common trigger for eczema flare-ups. Stress-management techniques such as meditation, yoga, and adaptogenic herbs like Ashwagandha and Holy Basil to support the body's response to stress.

Anti-inflammatory Herbs- To reduce skin inflammation and irritation, using herbs with anti-inflammatory properties. Calendula, Chamomile, and plantain leaf can be used topically or internally to soothe eczema-prone skin.

External Triggers Herbalists help identify and minimize exposure to external triggers such as allergens, harsh chemicals, and environmental pollutants that can worsen eczema symptoms.

Individualized Treatment Plans- herbalists create personalized treatment plans based on the individual's unique symptoms, triggers, and overall health. This approach aims to address the root causes of eczema and promote skin health from within.

The Role of Alterative Herbs in Eczema Management

Alterative Herbs, often referred to as "blood purifiers" or "detoxifiers," play a crucial role in addressing the underlying issues associated with eczema. These herbs are believed to support the body's natural detoxification processes, helping to eliminate toxins and metabolic waste that can contribute to internal imbalances. Here's how alterative herbs intersect with the underlying issues in eczema management:

Supporting Detoxification: Alterative herbs are known for their ability to support the body's detoxification processes, particularly through the liver, kidneys, lymphatic system, and skin. By aiding in the elimination of toxins, these herbs help reduce the burden on the body and promote overall health.

Blood Cleansing: While the term "blood purifier" is a bit of a misnomer, alterative herbs are believed to have a cleansing effect on the blood. This may help remove impurities that could contribute to skin inflammation and irritation in eczema.

Gut Health: Many alterative herbs also have a beneficial effect on gut health, helping to soothe and heal the gut lining. This is particularly important in eczema management, as gut health is closely linked to skin health.

Liver Support: Alterative herbs can support liver function, aiding in the detoxification of the body. This is important in eczema, as a healthy liver is essential for eliminating toxins and metabolic waste that can contribute to skin issues.

Immune Modulation: Some alterative herbs have immune-modulating effects, helping to balance an overactive immune response. This is beneficial in eczema, where immune dysfunction can contribute to skin inflammation and irritation.

Anti-inflammatory Effects: Many alterative herbs have anti-inflammatory properties, which can help reduce inflammation in the body, including the skin. This can be particularly useful in eczema, where inflammation plays a significant role in symptom severity.

Nutrient Support: Alterative herbs are often rich in vitamins, minerals, and other nutrients that are beneficial for overall health. This can support the body's healing process and promote skin health in eczema.

If you're struggling with eczema and seeking a holistic approach to manage your symptoms, consider consulting with a clinical herbalist. A clinical herbalist, like myself, can provide deeper insights into your condition and create personalized care plans tailored to your unique needs. With a focus on addressing the root causes of eczema and promoting overall well-being, herbal medicine offers a gentle and effective alternative to conventional treatments.

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