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Healthy Diet: The Link Between Carotenoids and Psoriasis

Vegetables and fruits. The Seaweed Bath Co.

Are you getting enough carotenoids in your diet? According to a study conducted by Harvard Medical School, psoriasis sufferers appear to have lower skin carotenoid counts than non-sufferers (J Eur Acad Dermatol Venereol. 2010 Nov 40).

According to the findings published in the November 2010 Journal of the European Academy of Dermatology and Venereology, researchers found that “[t]he mean carotenoid levels in the psoriasis and no psoriasis groups were respectively 22 099 and 29 180 and presence of psoriasis was found to be significantly related to lower levels of carotenoids in both univariable and multivariable analysis (P < 0.05). In the psoriasis group, the Psoriasis Area and Severity Index score was not significantly related to carotenoid levels (P = 0.07).”

Carotenoids are vitamin A provitamins that have antioxidant properties present in human tissues, including in the skin. Carotenoids are believed to improve the functioning of our immune system and protect skin cells from damaging free radicals. Therefore, they are crucial part of a person’s daily diet.

So how can you get more carotenoids in your diet? Mangoes, sweet potatoes, carrots, corn, tomatoes, spinach, kale and squash are all excellent sources of carotenoids. With so many delicious choices, why not include some of these fruits and vegetables in your daily diet?

Want more information? The Linus Pauling Institute at Oregon State University provides an excellent in-depth explanation of carotenoids here:

Photo credit: iStockphoto

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