I recently had someone ask me about eczema and how to best deal with it through diet. What we put into our mouths is very important but it got me thinking about how it is affected by our mood, feelings, our very nature of being.
Every illness, chronic condition or health condition is rooted in the body-mind. It is shaped (unconsciously) by our personality and influenced by the way we feel things.
One thing about skin is that it is extremely sensitive - both to the outside world and to our own changes in feeling and mood. Your skin is a boundary (literally a boundary) between yourself and others. But, on the other hand, your skin isy our body's internal nervous system turned outward. Did you know that in the womb, your nervous system and skin both develop out of the same surface which covers the embryo? So, the experience of being touched plays a critical role in immune system development in early life.
So, it's not surprising that nearly half of all skin disorders may actually reflect a psychosomatic disturbance according to Paul Martin in "The Healing Mind." Anyone with emotional conflict "under the skin" can become affected by eczema and, at the same time, anyone can learn to untangle the conflict and help heal it.
According to Skye Herbals, "eczema is a distress signal from the body, mind or emotions to you. It is asking that something be changed. Maybe it is manifesting as a visible illness because that’s what you need in order to acknowledge it. Eczema is an uncomfortable, even debilitating, condition that asks a lot of us through the healing process. It usually requires many things: a change of diet, a change of heart, learning to love terrible tasting herbs, surrendering to the process of boiling the terrible tasting herbs, cleansing the body, cleansing the mind. It requires investigation and observation. It requires some level of discipline. It requires that we learn to love ourselves through the healing process.
Milk thistle, which cleanses and detoxifies the liver and blood (if liver energy is stagnant, it can't cleanse the blood and this can lead to skin disorders like eczema and psoriasis) is one way of healing eczema but it needs to be taken in conjunction with stress reducing, soul connecting, quiet time; a change of diet or shift in lifestyle; a new job that resonates with your soul (or changing the way you think of the job you are unhappy in and making the very best of it); some proper vitamins and minerals that your body can actually absorb and healthy, organic foods. It's probably best to go to a qualified herbalist to seek help with the herbs but you'll still need to work on the other issues yourself. If you are overwhelmed and need some ideas to give you a nudge in the right direction, here are a few treatments I've read which may help: hypnosis, acupressure (look up points B23 and B27 on the lower back to help move stagnant chi) acupuncture, and Chinese herbal medicine, naturopathic medicine, homeopathy, Ayurveda, qi gong, tai chi, yoga, martial arts, meditation, therapy (art, music, movement, psychological, nutritional), journaling, energy work.
These are all great modalities able to help many ailments but, remember, working on your inner self is just as important!