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Chinese Medicine Psoriasis Diet

Psoriasis is a skin disease that makes scales form on the skin. It is a common disorder that can occur at any age. While you may have tried topical creams to help calm the inflammation and itchiness, this does not get to the root cause of Psoriasis. Dietary habits can directly affect the health of your skin and improve the symptoms of different kinds of Psoriasis, including flaky, scaly skin, red patches on the skin, dry or cracked skin, itching or burning. The affected skin may feel warm to touch or even tingle if blood flow is abundant to that area or if an individual becomes overheated. Other symptoms may also include swelling around the joints.

Chinese medicine aims to bring the body back into balance through diet and lifestyle changes rather than relying on drugs or other invasive treatments. In addition to dietary recommendations, there are also various Chinese medicine techniques such as acupuncture, gua sha, moxibustion, and tui na that can help reduce the symptoms of psoriasis and improve overall health.

Let’s look at what Chinese medicine has to say about the different food groups when treating psoriasis.


Chinese medicine views psoriasis as inflammation caused by a combination of factors. It believes that certain types of foods aggravate and increase that inflammation and that by eliminating those foods from the diet, one can reduce or manage psoriasis symptoms better. 

In Chinese medicine, there are various patterns associated with different forms of psoriasis. The most common patterns observed are heat, blood stasis/ stagnation and blood dryness. Along with other treatment methods such as acupuncture, herbal remedies and cupping, diet plays an equally important part in preventing recurrent psoriasis and psoriasis flare-ups.


• Excess Heat: Excess heat is a term in Chinese Medicine that defines a set of internal conditions and is the most frequently seen pattern with psoriasis and the most common cause of psoriasis in Chinese Medicine. It indicates that there is too much Yang energy in the body. Heat can be caused by Qi stagnation, which can manifest in symptoms such as eczema and  sometimes it is also accompanied with constipation, anxiety, irritability, and insomnia. The type of heat will be determined by the size, shape, and colour of redness on the skin.


• Wind Heat: The heat is frequently paired with wind in the early stages of psoriasis. During this stage the plaques are lighter and new lesions form with light white scale.


• Blood Heat : During this early stage blood heat may also manifest, this is seen by deeper red plaques. The darker the red plaques means more heat is present.

If you’re experiencing any of these symptoms, try including some cooling foods into your diet to help you regain your health’s balance.


Excess of heat can further manifest as  blood dryness and blood stagnation


• Blood Stasis/ Stagnation: Blood stasis or blood stagnation is caused by yin deficiency that causes fire or heat to flare up. According to TCM theory, blood stasis syndrome (BSS), one of the basic syndromes of psoriasis, is caused by poor or stagnant blood flow. Plaques are uneven, thick or hard, and purplish in hue when blood stagnates.


• Blood dryness: When this pattern is present the skin tend to be very dry and pale. It also means the psoriasis has been present for a long time with only a few new skin lesions. Itching and discomfort may be a persistent problem.


Chinese Medicine views diet for psoriasis in a different light. Yes, Chinese medicine agrees that increasing natural foods and limiting processed foods is good but it attributes food as medicine and takes into account the warming and cooling properties of each food. These concepts apply not just to the temperature of the meal, but also to how it moves energy inside your body.


  • Beans & Grains: A diet rich in grains and beans—mung beans, tofu, barley, buckwheat, brown rice—helps clear heat from the body, reduces skin inflammation, and detoxifies the body, according to research. Those foods are also excellent sources of antioxidants, anti-and inflammatories. 



  • Soups: Bone broth, miso soup. Bone broth for psoriasis with Chinese herbs added can be nutritious and healing for psoriasis.



  • Vegetables and fruits : Spinach, broccoli, cabbage, boi choi, cucumber, white radish, carrots, cherry, goji berry, watermelon, pineapple, grapes. Fruits and vegetables are high in antioxidant, which are compounds that decrease oxidative stress and inflammation.



What foods aggravate psoriasis? Foods to avoid for Psoriasis 

  • Shellfish: Is shrimp good for psoriasis? This is a frequently asked question since some think that shrimp and other shellfish contain certain fat that helps with Psoriasis. However, according to Chinese medicine, shellfish and shrimp are yang (warm) foods that easily create wind, which can cause skin itching.


  • Spices and spicy food: One of the properties of spices is the potential to absorb fluid which is the body’s supply of yin. Yin is what keeps the skin moisturized and healthy.


  • Alcohol: It is best to avoid alcohol if you experience psoriasis, because of alcohol’s disruptive impact on the immune system’s different pathways, alcohol is thought to be a psoriasis trigger.


  • Sugar and processed foods: It can lead to chronic inflammation in the body that can cause psoriasis to flare up.


Diet advice may differ depending on a Chinese Medicine practitioners diagnosis, the patterns observed, and the root cause of one’s psoriasis. Always seek professional advice when struggling with challenging symptoms.

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Learn more about TCM’s view on Psoriasis directly from our expert team!

* These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. This information is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease. We can’t guarantee the treatment result, as the symptoms of conditions are unpredictable and vary greatly from person to person. The treatment length and recovery time also varies for individual. Please visit our consultation page where a specialists will discuss your care and provide a consultation, and the treatment will be designed to meet your individual needs.

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