April 24, 2010

Psoriasis and Gluten Sensitivity

Psoriasis is a Symptom of Non-Celiac Gluten Sensitivity

Skin disease is common in those with gluten sensitivity. The most commonly seen skin affliction is called dermatitis herpetiformis.

Scientists at the Medical University of Silesia in Poland decided to find out whether or not antibodies for celiac disease could be found in the blood of those with psoriasis. They already knew that psoriasis was seen in some patients that had celiac disease without symptoms (called non-celiac gluten sensitivity) plus the fact that a remission could be seen in the psoriasis with a gluten-free diet. A remission of the psoriasis could even be seen in those who had had psoriasis for years.

The researchers took blood serum samples from 67 patients with psoriasis as well as serum from healthy people without the disease. They looked for antibodies against transglutaminase enzyme and against gliadin.  They found that patients with psoriasis had higher antibody levels of both transglutaminase and gliadin for IgA. Both of these correlated with psoriasis activity.

The Polish researchers concluded that these results imply that there is an association between psoriasis and celiac disease / gluten intolerance without the symptoms.


J Eur Acad Dermatol Venereol, Sept 2008; Vol. 22, No. 9, 1055-61.

Gluten Free Society’s Stance:

Someone with gluten sensitivity doesn’t always manifest symptoms such as bloating, abdominal pain, constipation and diarrhea that are commonly associated with celiac disease.

Psoriasis is just one more of the skin manifestations of gluten sensitivity.

Each year, millions of people visit their doctor with rashes of all types.  Many of them are sent home with corticosteroid creams that do little for the rash.

After reading this research study, we now know that dermatologists can solve some of the cases of rashes just by recommending a grain-free diet. A gluten-free diet usually eliminates rye, wheat and barley, but a true gluten free/grain-free diet eliminates all grains.

Do you have psoriasis or any other type of ‘mysterious’ skin disorder that has not responded to traditional medical treatment or to a standard gluten free diet (wheat, barley, and rye elimination)? If so, consider eliminating all grains and see what happens!

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22 Responses to “Psoriasis and Gluten Sensitivity”

  • [...] This post was mentioned on Twitter by Gluten Free Society. Gluten Free Society said: Psoriasis – a sign of silent celiac disease? http://www.glutenfreesociety.org/grainfreerecipes/psoriasis-and-gluten-sensitivity/ [...]

  • Jerrell Greist says:

    Such an informative site thanks for this information.

  • Jeannette Chipka says:

    I have had psoriasis for over 35 years and has gotten worse over the years. I tried light therapy and even had a unit in my home. Went through a couple medication trials, Raptiva and was on Raptiva for over 2 years until it was taken off the market. I tried every cream, gel and ointment available in the US time after time. Then I went on Enbrel which took care of the psoriasis fine, but when I would get sick it took more and more time to get well. This past Feb. I got sick and was literally in bed for a month. During this time I did not take my weekly Enbrel shot because of the havoc it plays on the immune system. After getting well from URI symptoms including getting tubes in my ears, I decided to stay off the shot and go on a gluten free diet. I have been on the diet over a month now, with NO PSORIASIS SYMPTOMS AT ALL. I know this is not a long time but previously if I missed a shot I would break out. My hands and feet actually bled from the lesions. I hope this gluten free is going to continue making me psoriasis free and if so, I will stay on it the rest of my life.

  • jehanzeb khan says:

    please help me in skine psorisis

  • Florentino Malara says:

    I was diagnosed with Coeliac’s disease at the start of 2011. Before that I would eat anything and everything and still can’t seem to stop. I’ve been having very severe stomach pains and lots of other pain in my abdominal area for a long time. I try so hard to eat foods without gluten because of the fear the doctor has put into me, but get so dang frustrated. I try to bake bread but seem to mess it up. If I get it right then it goes bad fast. It’s like I can’t seem to maintaina healthy diet and enjoy food. I have no patience for making “everything” that I eat and no will power. I’m 238 pounds and 5’8″ tall and way obese according to the BMI index. Living in a remote region in Alaska makes it a bit incovenient to buy gluten-free products without paying a seal and a whale for shipping. So… I . I dont know how much longer I can keep this up. I constantly say to myself that I’ve been eating this way for 41 years and have been miserable for just about that long that why does it matter if I’m gluten free? It’s an everyday struggle with life and I really have no support groups except what’s on this internet.

  • Friend says:

    Florentino — look into the original Atkins diet. It is gluten free and easy to follow. Also, if you go to fatsecret.com, you can join for free and meet others who are doing Atkins to be Gluten free. It’s been a big help to me and you may find it useful.

  • Hilary says:

    Accidentally discovered cure to my psoriasis by cutting out wheat to lose weight. Now psoriasis free for first time in 31 years!!!!!!!!! Yippee! Cant believe it. Psoriasis has been so bad at times it bled and skin peeled off in sheets. Had to vacuum bed every morning errrgh. Yuk! disgusting disease. Have tried steroids, coal tar, light therapy etc etc. have been on dovonex but area affected so large I virtually gave up trying to treat myself and just accepted this is the way my life would be. I am sooo excited at finding this site as I thought I must be imagining the connection between wheat and psoriasis. Good health to everyone!

  • That is fantastic Hilary! Thanks for sharing your success with us!
    Dr. O

  • Monica says:

    I am 29 now, and have lived with moderate/severe psoriasis for 19 years. I went on the Dukon Diet to lose weight, which eliminates all bread, oats and grains from the diet. With an increase of lean proteins. After a few weeks on the diet I noticed an significant improvement. When I reached my goal weight I started to introduce oats and grains back into my diet, behold my psoriasis came back with a vengeance, the only thing I could make a connection to was the grain and oats. Since then I have followed a gluten free diet and have found that although I still have lesions I don’t have to use creams or steroids to live and breath in my own skin anymore. But beware of hidden gluton products like soy sauce and teriyaki sauce.

  • Thanks for sharing Monica,
    Consider removing dairy, and sugar from your diet as well. Both are major psoriatic triggers.
    All the best,
    Dr. O

  • Shelly says:

    Yes, I have also discovered the wonderful absence of my psoriasis when I cut out grains. I was dumb founded and a little angry that I have suffered with psoriasis that manifested on the palms of my hands and soles of my feet for 24 years, but instead of being informed of dietary influences I was given different creams and gels. I was diagnosis when I was 25, I am 49 now and this past year I have been almost totally psoriasis free when I cut out grains. When I do ocassionally eat grains, including beer, with in 3 days my psoriasis is back. One benefit for me has been the 45 lb weight loss I have experienced since cutting grains from my diet!

  • Rebecca says:

    I agree with the article, but feel like I must clarify some wording. Celiac disease without symptoms is called silent Celiac. Non-Celiac Gluten Sensitivity is a term used to describe a sensitivity to gluten where Celiac testing is negative.

  • Meg says:

    I have suffered with Psorasis on and off for 20 years. Since the birth of my two wonderful children (5 years ago) my symptoms have become infinitely worse. I have tried so many different treatments and nothing has worked. I feel dispair with my skin and frustration with the suggestions doctors have made that don’t work! Today was my first day off of Gluten. I’m hoping I will be able to join the many of you here who have found relief from dietary changes. I pray this will work.

  • Debbie says:

    Interesting…I have suffered with Psorasis for almost 30 years…anything that can save me money and get me off meds is worth a try…so glad I stumbled across this article…

  • Keek says:

    It sickens me to know that they have known about this for five years and I am just now hearing about it!

  • Max Houston says:

    I have had Psorasis for about t 10 years. Nothing the doctors offered did any good at all ! I found that using Crisco as a lotion in the affected area’s helped better than all the lotions and steroids. Then, on advise from a friend, I started using liquid vitamin E on the areas. I have been using it 2-3 times a day for almost a month and have had significant healing, stronger skin, and the scales are gone. Not a cure, but a huge improvement !

  • Sue Shaw says:

    I have had servere psoraisis since the age of 5 years old and am now 62. I was told by a friend that cutting out gluten from my diet would prevent psoriasis 10years ago. I cut out the gluten and the rash disappeared completly after about 6 months and I have now had normal skin for the last 10 years. I was wondering if gluten had caused my high blood pressure as well, as I have been having anti-hypertensive tablets for 20years and my blood pressure is now 119/71?

  • Jimmy Hooker says:

    I was having trouble losing the last 10 lbs of a 50 lbs weight loss and tried the Wheatbelly plan to get the last belly fat off. I didn’t believe the wheatbelly “hype” about all it could cure, but I said if it cured my psoriatic arthritis I would shout it’s praises from the mountain tops! Not only is my knee now bending completely pain-free, but my “rotted” toe nails are growing back in pink! It took about 3 weeks to believe it, and it’s un-disputable to me. I slipped up and ate some pancake mix I thought was gluten-free (it wasn’t) my skin started to rash-up, and my knee-pain flared up. I’m convenced. Tell the World!

  • I am happy for those of you getting relief from your psoriasis by cutting out gluten. I wish I could say the same….I have been gluten free for over a year and I’m at the end of my rope as the psoriasis has gotten a ton worse in the last month or 2. Topicals and light therapy are doing very little. Even cutting out almost all dairy and sugar isn’t working. Unfortunately I will be back on the injections by Nov if no relief:(

  • Sandy says:

    Barbara — It sounds as tho you obtained relief in the beginning of your adherence to a GF diet, would that be correct? Many times those of us with biopsy diagnosed Celiac Disease have the same problem. We go GF and have improvement…. then months or as long as a year or two later, we develop many of the same symptoms again.

    You may have developed other food sensitivities. I would suggest you contact your dr. about being tested for Celiac Disease, as it’s been proven there is a definite correlation between Psoriasis and CD. Also, consider testing for food sensitivities. You or your dr. can contact CYREX LABS for further information, they are most reliable for this testing.

  • [...] Psoriasis linked to gluten sensitivity – Gluten Free Society – New research links gluten as a cause of psoriasis. … I have had psoriasis for over 35 years and has gotten worse over the years…. [...]

  • Lissy Lampe says:

    I have had Psoriasis since I was 15 … Am 52 at the moment! All dr’s that I tried to tell, since about 25 years ago, that when i eat gluetn, pork or diary, my psoriasis flares. All laughed until this year when i spoke with anutrionist and we went to look at many others and lo and bhold I was right all along!!!

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