Happy Psoriasis Awareness Month!
Hi Charlotte, Please tell us a bit about yourself.
I’m from Newcastle upon Tyne, I have a degree in Marine Biology and am a scuba diving instructor. I have a huge passion for the ocean and everything in it, I’m obsessed with sharks and dived with my favorite animal, great whites sharks! love traveling and lived in Thailand for a while where my psoriasis completely cleared from head to foot.
When were you Diagnosed with Psoriasis?
I think I was around 10 years old, so 20 years ago.
What do you think caused it?
3 other people in my family have it but only started to show up for them much later in life, I read somewhere you’re more likely to develop psoriasis if a relative has it. I think mine first got really bad after a family bereavement when I was 16 so I definitely think stress is a trigger.
What Foods do you Avoid?
Dairy, meat, seafood, fried food, and gluten when possible, but I do love pasta!
What Foods do you Eat to Heal?
I’m a vegetarian but try and get as much protein and vitamins as possible from nuts, seeds, fruits, vegetables and any kind of superfood. Soup is always a massive comfort food and so good for you, especially ones packed full of veggies and lentils. Also, I know it’s not great for your skin but a bit of chocolate always makes you feel better!
Do you avoid gluten and what do you think about Gluten sensitivity in Psoriasis?
I try to avoid it but like I said, I love pasta and bread now and again. I’ve tried gluten-free stuff but I found it has a really high sugar content so you’ve got to look at the ingredients and have realised it’s easier to just go without it. I do think that gluten does affect the severity of your psoriasis in some people but it’s a very complex disease and certain diets might work for some people and not for others.
Let’s talk Breakfast
I usually either have fruit and vegan yogurt or make a shake with cucumber, avocado (great for your skin), pineapple, lemon, and celery. I think I got the recipe from Jason Vale who has loads of recipes that are good for your skin. Veggie sausages and scrambled tofu are nice for a treat.
Name your top 3 Triggers
Cold weather (my psoriasis clears really quickly when I’m in the sun but gets really bad over winter)
Certain skin products and laundry detergents that are fragranced but it’s trial and error, I always try to buy products for sensitive skin
Live in a hot country! The best medicine for me has always been the sun and the sea. Otherwise taking salt baths, wash with an emollient such as Hydromol instead of shower gel, and moisturize constantly! (I usually use coconut oil). And take vitamin D and omega 3 supplements.
What would you tell to those who are newly diagnosed and looking for answers?
Although it feels at the time like it’s the end of the world, it is manageable but you do need to put in the work to keep on top of it. It will get better once you find something that works for you whether it’s diet changes, medication, or creams. You might get looks or comments once in a while but there’s becoming a lot more awareness. Don’t let anyone get you down and try to love the skin you’re in cos the people that matter don’t love you for your skin, they love you for you!
You can follow Charlotte’s journey on her Instagram account @antoinette_sprout