Skin rashes of any kind are no fun. Whether they’re something mild like a reaction to something in your laundry detergent, or something more serious like a food allergy or skin condition such as eczema or psoriasis, skin rashes can be major pains (pun intended) that can flare out of nowhere. Many things can lead to skin rashes, which makes the root cause incredibly hard to pinpoint. If you’re in the process of trying to figure out what’s causing your rash, or you’ve encountered something such as poison ivy that causes a rash, there are some natural remedies you can use to help with the painful itching and swollen skin that both come with rashes of all kinds. Some options may even provide healing to the rash if it treats the root cause.
First, be aware that while some chemically-based skin products may help with symptoms, they also contain toxic chemicals that are harmful to the body. Parabens and petroleum-based agents are two very common ingredients found in most over-the-counter and prescription creams that can both lead to endocrine (hormone) problems and can cause potential damage to the internal organs. They also usually don’t cure a rash, but merely treat the itching.
Below are some of the most common ways you can help heal a skin rash naturally. Please keep in mind that these may take several applications (some may even take months) before the rash goes away, however, they do provide helpful nutrients for the skin and will not cause toxicity to the body. Many can also provide an immediate soothing to the skin when a rash flares.
1. Coconut and Tea Tree Oil
Skin fungal infections are usually seen through skin rashes such as ringworm, psoriasis and even forms of eczema (though not all). They’re referred to as dermatitis rashes and can occur for various reasons. They are not normally indicative of internal yeast infections (like candida), though they can be in some more severe cases.
You should not allow these infected areas to become too moist with water, but should treat them with anti-fungal agents that will also soothe red spots and possibly sores that occur from the rashes. Tea tree oil is a potent anti-fungal that you can purchase as an essential oil. Combine it with coconut oil (raw, extra-virgin and cold pressed organic oil) and apply after you shower. Pat try once it has set and do this daily to provide relief. This may take weeks to months to cure the rash but will provide immediate relief for pain and itching.
2. Apple Cider Vinegar
Apple cider vinegar is a health, beauty, and lifestyle “hack” that everyone should jump in on ASAP! It’s not just helpful for treating acne, but can also fight fungus on the skin that causes rashes. If you have a rash that is not fungal-related, apple cider vinegar may not work, however, for skin rashes like ringworm and fungal-related forms of eczema, apple cider vinegar will kill the fungus on the skin due to its anti-microbial properties. Do this after you shower and apply the mixture above for best results.
3. Anti-Fungal Supplements/Foods
Interestingly enough, mangosteen powder, a fruit-based superfood, is also one of the best natural foods that can help with skin fungal infections, including eczema, candida, and ringworm. It’s also a good choice since you can consume the raw whole food powder internally (such as in a smoothie or oatmeal), or use the whole fruit (pictured above) if you have access to it. As a benefit, mangosteen a great source of Vitamin C and tastes like a sweet tart berry, which makes it one of the more exciting ways to treat a rash!
4. Aloe Vera
Apply after showering and allow it to dry. This is one of the best treatments for rashes related to poison ivy.
5. Low Histamine Diet
One of the most recent findings of skin rashes is an intolerance to high histamine foods. This is of course, not the case for all rashes, but only for certain individuals with sensitive immune systems. Histamines are natural substances that occur in all foods. They are not harmful for most people or anything to fear, yet for those that have an auto-immune disease or a sensitive or overactive immune system, consuming high histamine foods can be a miserable experience. They increase immune system activity as the body produces anti-histamines to get rid of them. As a result, rash flares can occur, leaving a person itching uncontrollably, breaking out in rashes, and even feeling sick.
Foods naturally very high in histamines include: processed meats, cheese, dairy, tomatoes, any fermented food made from yeast (like kefir, alcohol, bread, distilled vinegar), eggs, caffeine, sugar, chocolate, spices (not herbs), high oxylate foods like spinach, condiments with vinegar, and overly ripe fruit.
Leafy greens, fresh vegetables, fresh fruit (except tomatoes and overly ripe fruits), whole grains, beans, legumes, raw nuts and seeds (except peanuts that are prone to yeast and mold), and other foods that are low in histamines are recommended if you find that high histamine foods cause you to break out. Most plant-based eaters will be safe since extremely high histamine foods are largely found in animal-based foods, but avoiding chocolate, caffeine, fermented and yeast foods, along with sugary foods is also necessary as well. Most histamine rashes are only temporary until the immune system begins to function normally again. A more restricted histamine diet may be necessary for a period of time until the condition improves.
Other Considerations …
If you have a skin allergy, remember that you may also want to consider if a food allergy is a cause. Wheat and/or gluten, nuts, eggs, dairy, sesame, fish, and crustaceans are the eight most common food allergens known in the United States. Eliminating these can help you identify if these are a cause of your rash, or if it is caused by something else.
Itching may be no fun but always try these natural options first. If you have dealt with skin rashes and have your own natural remedy, let us know. Comment below and share!
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Lead Image Source: Nina Nelson/Flickr