For as long as I can remember, I have been plagued with a red bumpy rash on the back of both of my arms along with an occasional flare up on my back (see photo below). Since I was in high school, I have seen a variety of doctors and been prescribed an array of topical steroid creams. The steroid creams always helped to clear up the rash but were not meant for long term use. Plus, they had the downside of increased sun sensitivity and, well, the obvious issue of spreading steroids on myself.
In the fall of 2007 I saw a new doctor and was finally given a name for this persistent rash – keratosis pilaris. With this newfound information, I was now able to consult my dear friend google. I spent many hours scouring the internet for remedies and found advice pointing to creams containing urea, lactic acid, salicylic acid, tar and retinoid. No luck. There was also the completely unsuccessful investment of time and money on tanning at the local tanning salon. Oh, and I have tried every type of laundry soap and fabric softener that I could find.
About a year ago, my husband went 100% paleo. I was pregnant at the time, so I spent about 9 months kind of dabbling and doing my best to support him without fully buying in. But, once our adorable baby girl was born, my aversion to meat subsided and I was full on paleo and enjoying it! The choice to go paleo was not really due to any major health concerns or even for weight loss because after a year of dabbling and research, I just knew it was the healthy choice to make. It never dawned on me that it might affect my skin.
In fact, keratosis pilaris was so far from my mind when I started paleo that a few weeks in—when I noticed the improvement in my skin (see below)—I couldn’t figure out what had changed: my body or my environment. After a bit of thought and some research, I discovered that this condition is often linked to both gluten and casein intolerance.
Right now, it looks as though the paleo diet has put my keratosis pilaris into complete remission. This means no more tanning beds, steroid creams or desperate home remedies. I cannot wait to see what other pleasant surprises paleo might have for me!