It was always preached whenever someone caught a cold or even had the flu.
Drink your orange juice! But don’t actually…it’s full of sugar and barely has any vitamin C in it…but more on that later.
So how can incorporating Vitamin C help your flares up, itching and heal your skin? Well, because it has so many benefits. Let me break it down for you.
What is Vitamin C?
Vitamin C is also known as “L-ascorbic acid”. It is a water soluble vitamin, which means that it can easily dissolve in water.
The human body cannot manufacture or store vitamin C which is why we need to get it from food sources or supplements. It is then carried throughout your body into the tissues. This means that, your body takes what it needs and flushes out the rest.
This is why it’s recommended to take vitamin c throughout the day in smaller does rather than one big dose per day. Since it’s not stored in the body, water-soluble vitamins needs to be replenished throughout the day.
Vitamin C is required to make collagen (which we need for our skin health), involved in protein metabolism, is an antioxidant and plays a crucial role in immune health.
So how does vitamin C help in the context of eczema and topical steroid withdrawal?
Five Vitamin C Benefits for Eczema and Topical Steroid Withdrawal
Boosts Immune System
- White blood cells play an important role in your immune system. They fight viruses and bacteria that enter your body. Vitamin C works with your body to stimulate the production of white blood cells as well as stimulate the function of it.
- It helps your body produce antibodies. What are antibodies? They attack foreign substances your body comes in contact with such as pathogens and toxins.
- So if you are taking any medications like Protopic which weaken your immune system, Vitamin C can help boost or at least maintain your immune system to an extent while you heal
2. Boosts Collagen Production
- First of all, collagen is a protein that is used for bones, skin, muscles, tendons and ligaments
- In order for your body to produce collagen, it actually depends on Vitamin C
- So when you are lacking a good amount of vitamin C in your diet, this will actually hinder the collagen production form your body
- Your body also uses up whatever vitamin C it has while your skin is continuously healing, fighting off bacteria, viruses, and more
3. Wound Healing
- Since vitamin C is needed for collagen (which is essential for skin health), it is also a necessary component for wound healing
- So when your skin is is inflamed or damaged, in your case as a result of eczema or TSW, your red blood cells help create collagen for new skin tissue to repair it
- During the repair process, the wound then starts to fill up with the new tissue. As the wound starts to heal, the wound gets smaller and small
- In the case of eczema and tsw, because you are dealing with inflamed and damaged skin, you can start to understand how important vitamin c and collagen are in your healing journey
4. Natural Antihistamine
- What is a histamine? It is typically released when your body detects a harmful substance in the body. It is part of the body’s immune system and is great at protecting us against, bacteria, parasites and viruses
- However, when it comes to allergies, this is where the over reaction happens. As we know with eczema, usually we are allergic to dust, pollen and even food. These aren’t actually dangerous to us but the body believes it is and the immune system kicks in releasing histamine
- This is when we get watery eyes, congestion in the nose, gets harder to breath, sneezing and the list goes on!
- So this is when we run to the nearest pharmacy to grab an anti-histamine in the name of Reactine, Benadryl and so forth
- As we already know that vitamin C boosts the immune system, it also acts as a natural anti-histamine. It works by slowing down the overreaction to environmental lifestyle triggers and decreases your body’s histamine production
5. Adrenal Support
- Your adrenal glands are located on top of both your kidneys that produce hormones which regulate cortisol, metabolism, immune system, response to stress and other functions
- As you can see, it is pretty much involved in vital functions of the body. When we are dealing with some sort of health issue, your body is working day and night behind the scenes to help you heal.
- Diet and mental stress (life, career, family and just having a health condition) can impair the function of your adrenal glands
- So when we are stressed as a result of eczema and dealing with TSW, this directly affects all organs of our body, along with your adrenals
- Vitamin C is used to produce stress hormones such as cortisol and if you are constantly stressed out (consciously and subconsciously) your adrenal glands use more vitamin C
Vitamin C Sources
So where do I get my vitamin C from? First and foremost, you should always get it through your diet first. Once you have cleaned up your diet. You can use supplements to help boost your vitamin C intake during the healing journey.
You can’t out run a bad diet
Below is a list of top 10 sources according to the National Institute of Health:
- Red peppers
- Brussels Sprouts
How much Vitamin C should I take?
According to the National Institute of Health, the recommended dietary allowance (RDA) for Vitamin C are:
- Ages of 19+ 90m (Males) / Female (75mg)
In my humble opinion, that is not enough based on how and what our body uses vitamin C for.
There is also a Tolerable Upper Intake Level (UL) which provides guidelines on how much one can take without it being harmful.
For vitamin C you can take up to 2000mg a day which is what I would start if you have eczema or going through TSW. Always work with a healthcare practitioner if you are new to supplements.
Cautions and Risks
It is really hard to overdose because your body uses what it needs and flushes out the rest throughout the day. This is why it’s best to divide up your 2000mg throughout the day rather that take it in one sitting.
Some side effects of taking too much (which rarely happens) are: diarrhea, nausea, vomiting, heartburn, abdominal cramps, headache, insomnia.
Food for Thought
So what are you waiting for? Start incorporating more vitamin C sources and start researching for the right Vitamin C supplement to help you on your healing journey. This is one of the main vitamins we need and now you know why it’s important for us eczema and topical steroid withdrawal warriors!
If your eczema or just your skin health in general is not where you want it to be, you first need to address nutrition.
For most people, it’s hard to address what they eat. It’s an entire lifestyle shift.
But once you make that shift and see the healing benefits, you won’t turn back.
Your skin will start to heal from the inside out and you’ll even have more energy.
I’ve tried a lot of treatments and diets in the past, but the one thing that made the biggest difference is focusing on nutrition to heal from the inside out.
If you are embarking on the the eczema or topical steroid withdrawal journey and interested in a Skin Health coach to support you, please contact me via Instagram and Facebook for a complimentary 30min call!
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