Eczema
Natural Remedies

Eczema - Editor's Choice

Over the years, Earth Clinic readers have sent us many reports about their treatments for Eczema. The editors at Earth Clinic consider the below posts to be some of the most helpful and informative and have named them 'Editor's Choice'. We hope that you will find this useful.

Vitamin B12

Posted by Clatterbuck (Beltsville, Md) on 09/12/2020
5 out of 5 stars

I can't say sure but I think B12 shots can cure Eczema.

My daughter had really bad eczema she had it on the soles of her feet so bad she was hobbling around like an old lady but she was only 25. Her hands were painful, cracked and bleeding. She had gone to several doctors and tried all kinds of topical treatments with limited success.

After a couple of years of trying to deal with the eczema she was diagnosed with severe B12 deficiency. Her body can't process B12 properly so she needs monthly B12 shots for the rest of her life. Well, she got her initial loading doses (6 shots once a week for 6 weeks) and she noticed her eczema seemed better.

Her eczema waxed and waned so she didn't get too excited. She has been getting her shots for 6 months now and her eczema is almost totally gone. She still has one tiny spot on her foot but it's not sore or cracked. The only thing she can attribute it to is starting B12 shots. I thought I would share this in the hope it can help someone else. A lot of people are B12 deficient and don't know it. A simple blood test can tell you if you are.


Wash Clothes in Baby Shampoo

Posted by Diane C (Southern California) on 05/28/2018
5 out of 5 stars

Dear Earthclinic,

I just wanted to share this information with people that suffer from Eczema and hives. My adult son age 48 for a few years now was suffering first from hives and then from terrible eczema! He even had to stop working and lived with us because he was so ill. One day our washing machine broke and so we started to wash clothing at a local laundromat. Then my son's eczema (the hives subsided) got even worse! We didn't know what to make of it? One day my husband decided to rinse some of his clothing alone and my husband could not get over all the soap residue coming from the washed clothing (loads of it). My son's clothing was full of soap residue that showed up in the rinse water and had to be rinsed several times to get the soap out!

Now we only wash my son's laundry in organic Baby shampoo (by hand) and his eczema is going away! We believe that using the laundromat washers had even more soap residue from other people's wash. My son is now almost well completely from the eczema (a little redness on one leg only) and feels so much better. My son had allergy problems since childhood but this eczema/hive problem was making his life miserable. He now feels like he is back to normal. Thanks DianeC.


Lemon Juice, Magnesium Oil

Posted by Tommo (Scotland) on 10/16/2017
5 out of 5 stars

I have finally cured the big patch of eczema which covered my upper right arm, after four years of trying many of the cures recommended on this site. Products which helped included ACV, iodine and clay. This was probably due to them removing the dead skin because, in my case, all moisturisers made the eczema itchy. I think the moisturisers were feeding the dead skin and not allowing the healthy skin to breathe.

My cure is probably a combination of lemon juice, transdermal magnesuim chloride oil and possibly overnight fasting of 16 hours e.g. stop eating at 7pm and breaking my fast at 11 am with a decent breakfast.

The lemon juice was a sheer fluke. My arm was so very itchy so I grabbed 1/2 a lemon which had been sitting in the fridge for a few days. The rind was hard and so rubbing the arm with the lemon rind was sheer bliss. Hours later the redness had disappeared and the skin was still calm, not itchy. I continued to rub my arm with lemon juice only washing it off before the next application. The lemon juice exfoliated all the dead skin which may be the reason that the itch and redness disappeared but the skin was still thick (lichen simplex chronicus) but not scaly so I decided to drench it regularly with transdermal magnesium chloride oil which I massaged into the skin.

When all the rough skin disappeared except for two extra thick "spots", I removed the top layers of dead skin painlessly from these lumps with a sterilised needle. It was about this time that I changed my regime only eating during an eight hour window during the day which means that all the food in my stomach will be digested before I tuck into breakfast the following morning.

Epilogue: I broke my upper arm four weeks ago and since then it has been envelopped in a sling so my arm has not been exposed to much fresh air recently but I have continued to spray my lovely smooth skin on my arm with the magnesium chloride and to date the eczema has not returned. Hurrah!


Multiple Remedies

Posted by Tommo (Bonnie, Scotland) on 05/08/2017
5 out of 5 stars

Finally eczema is disappearing fast after three years of trying most of the natural remedies recommended here. I realise that it is slightly premature to post my good news but there has been such a remarkable change for the better in the appearance of my skin that I wanted to tell other eczema suffers about my success. Even if it does not cure the eczema 100% (which I hope it does) the condition seems to be fading fast. Recently I started to eat lots of sauerkraut with my main meal of the day and have been spraying the eczema patches with transdermal magnesium twice a day. The improvement is outstanding and although the condition has not completely disappeared I have only been on the sauerkraut regime for just over two weeks now but hallelujah the itch has gone and most of the dead skin and inflammation too!

Concerning ACV in my case it calmed the itch because it sloughed off the dead skin. Moisturising the eczema helped create the itch because the dead skin was soaking up the creams and oils and they probably discouraged my skin from producing its own moisture while I plastered it with lotions and potions. I have had a modicum of success with Lugol's oil too as it obliterated the dead skin and tamed the itch.

The first and only other bout of eczema that I have experience was 17 years ago and I managed to clear that up immediately thanks to four treatments of colonics but that did not work for me this time round. There was no marked improvement after three sessions whereas the previous time, the eczema cleared up overnight after the first session but I had been recommended to have a minimum of four sessions so I completed the treatment.

Let food be thy medicine! Good luck!


Magnesium Spray

Posted by Sammy68 (Cincinnati, Oh) on 03/06/2017
5 out of 5 stars

I have found the perfect cure for eczema. I have been suffering a nasty bout of eczema on my back for the past few months. Pretty decent sized patch, approximately the size of my palm. Extremely itchy. In fact it was so itchy that I couldn't refrain from scratching it, especially at night, which of course caused it to spread. I tried everything...calamine lotion, tea tree oil, lavender oil, coconut oil, shea nut butter, calendula and chamomile ointment, and finally cortizone cream. Nothing worked.

So, I read somewhere to mix a small travel sized spray bottle with hot water, add a big pinch of both Himalayan salt and Epsom salts, shake the bottle real good, and spray that rash down liberally. Less than 1 week later the eczema rash is completely gone. Unbelievable. It cost pennies. It's worth a try for all you eczema sufferers.


Apple Cider Vinegar

Posted by Wish (United Kingdom) on 02/10/2017
5 out of 5 stars

Hi everyone. I am one of those people who have suffered immensely for about 2 years with trying every single steroid which the best of skin specialists prescribe. I was diagnosed as having atopic/allergic dermatitis. I also tried homeopathic medicine but nothing calmed my skin down. It always started with little red itchy bumps all over my body and the scalp which were terribly itchy. I would go mad itching my body 24*7 which was also embarrassing. It all started with a patch of these red bumps one of my foot and it just kept increasing in surface area. In a few months time it covered the whole of my foot, also reaching my leg. This then started weeping dreadfully. And before I knew it, it was all over my body. I was in a miserable state as I was weeping and itchy all over the body and I had my clothes sticking to me. Everything irritated my skin. Had no clue what to do.

I got an NHS appointmt (which is a nightmare in this country) and all they gave me were different doses of antibiotic, antihistamines, steroids, emollients, doublebase dayleave gel and what not. In the end when nothing stopped my problem they decided to wrap my whole legs n zincbandage which was the worst thing they could do. I was left with no option but to go to India and consult the skin specialists there as it was a waiting time of 12 months to see the specialist here in the UK. I met the skin specialist there and the first thing that they said was to remove that bandage. I was given a high dose of steroid to calm the flare up.

My skin looked completely burnt wherever I had the flare up. It was a very scary image. But then I was prescribed a permanent dose of steroids and was told whenever any new bumps started to appear I had to start applying those steroid creams. I had a comprehensive allergy test done as well which just came up with a grass panel allergy. So in essence nobody knew what the problem was! I was completely exhausted with this disease, didn't know what to bath with, what to eat, what to wear. I literally wanted to die!

But then one day my partner decided to get to the bottom of the problem and started to look on the internet for natural remedies for eczema. And he also came across the Earth Clinic website. He advised I tried some of the remedies with best reviews. The ones that I tried were ACV, Himalayan sea salt+epsom salt, mustard oil and coconut oil.

I applied the salt fluff formed by boiling Himalayan sea salt + epsom salt (50-50) in little water and added little turmeric (for its antibacterial properties) on the open wounds and guess what, it actually started working by a blood clotting sort of a mechanism. This is similar to what people in old age used to do when they had wounds-apply salt!

The second and best thing which I am living on today as well is ACV-Apple Cider Vinegar (organic and raw with the "mother"). I drank 2 teaspoonful in warm water twice a day, applied 50% diluted in water on the new bumps and at least twice a day(the more times you apply the better). And I would just see them disappear. You have to have belief and patience with these remedies as you might have to continually apply it for a few times before it starts to reduce in intensity and then disappear completely. And a rule to follow no matter how bad it is - DO NOT ITCH, just makes it worse. I am using this ACV same way every single day and I haven't had to apply a single steroid which just is a poison for you.

I do not use any soap, just shower in plain water. I used to take bath in above mentioned salts every day when I had the full flare up but now I have reduced it to just once a week or even less. And now the only thing I use to moisturise the skin is pure kachi ghani mustard oil from Dabur or Patanjali (found on Amazon). These things improve your skin over time and make your skin barrier stronger which has been destroyed due to this disease.

I hope this helps. I have tried to be very descriptive in my review so it can help as many people as possible.

Thanks!


Turmeric

Posted by Ejclarke (Dc) on 11/28/2016
5 out of 5 stars

TURMERIC! Please try if you have eczema.

I developed a horrible (probably stress related) breakout of eczema all over my body about 2 weeks ago, the skin on my arms literally looked purple and my face was swollen with eczema all over my forehead and under my right eye. This is the first major breakout I have had in a bout 10 years, my brother even asked me if I got punched in the eye because it looked so bad.

I got steroid pills and creams form the doctor and it cleared up my face after a few days (again I haven't used steroids in over ten years, eczema previously disappeared mostly from juicing and striving to maintain a great diet)

Sad part is as soon as I stopped using the steroid cream, my face looked nearly as bad as it did before I used it. I was determined not to keep using steroids on my face so I searched the internet for a solution. I saw turmeric on this site and a few other sites as well as Apple cider vinegar.

I started the following regimen that COMPLETELY cleared my face of eczema

Apple cider vinegar three times a day in warm water (about two teaspoons in 8 ounces)

About 1/4 teaspoon of turmeric and a sprinkle of black pepper in 8 ounces water as soon as I wake up before consuming anything else.

The most integral part of my regimen was turmeric masks which consisted of plain greek yogurt (Chobani) and organic ground turmeric (got from Whole Foods) I put just these two in a bowl and mixed it (not sure of the turmeric measurement but I put enough to make it mustard yellow color) and then I rubbed this all over my face with a double portion on trouble areas. Leave it on for 20 minutes until dried and then washed it with warm water then a light facial cleanser. I did this twice a day for 3 days and on the 3rd day I woke up with 95% of eczema gone on my face. I am going to try this on arms and legs soon but I am almost certain it will clear up anywhere that eczema is evident.

I did a turmeric mask in the morning then I would mix half and half ACV and water and use a cotton ball to wipe my face and let it dry out on my face. I would do this about 2 or three times during the day and then I would do another turmeric mask at night.

Lastly, I totally changed my diet, meaning I stopped eating meat (I was eating all organic meat prior but I think it was causing digestive issues) most of my meal consists of vegetables like broccoli, cabbage and kale, steamed. And I eat brown rice. I eat fish most days and the occasional lentil soup. I also eat a lot of oatmeal with almond milk and the only real fruit I consume is bananas and the occasional apple or mango in green juices. I eat no sugar, dairy, eggs, etc. Taking about 2 probiotic pills a day and one fish oil tablet daily. I have been on this diet for about 2 weeks now.

I also exercise at least 4 times a week, exercise makes things itchy BUT as soon as I got off the treadmill I would go and put apple cider vinegar on my face and let it dry.

Hope this helps someone! Prayer and Turmeric and a little faith gave a great ending to a horrifying experience.

P.S. Even if you have a skin condition other than eczema I would recommend you try turmeric masks and ingesting it(less then a teaspoon a day)! It actually tastes great with a bit of warm almond milk


Iodine

Posted by HM (Tennessee) on 01/06/2014
5 out of 5 stars

I've thrown everything at my eczema (flax seed and flax oil, ACV pills and ACV liquid, baking soda, Vaseline, frankincense, olive oil). I've probably left something off like banana, or onions which did not work. There are probably others, but none worked like IODINE!!! I have atopic dermatitis eczema. Every time I scratch, it spreads.... really unbearable. Also, for those who say you can't catch it they are wrong. I used (by accident) an old razor of someone who had it, and the two spots where the razor hit became inflamed, itchy and spread. Later (not knowing what I had) I scratched it and then my head where it is now. From razor to foot to head all by a scratch.

But I digress... I cleared up the one on my foot using everything including iodine, but did not connect iodine as the main thing because I only did it once and it burned so bad I didn't do it again. But when it spread to my head, neck, and ear I've had more time to experiment. I've had the head eczema for about a 1.5 month, and got relief as soon as I started using iodine. By the 2nd day it is gone. Nothing hurts, my skin is still tough and thick but even that is better and fading.

Mix 1/3 Lugol's iodine with about 2/3 water, using a Q-tip or toilet paper dapped it on affected area. Be careful it stings like a mother (that is why it is mixed with water). I like it to sting a little, then I know it is working. If it stings too much add more water. The first thing that happens is, it stops the itching, second thing is, it dries it up. I used Vaseline to keep it moist and it helps with pain. Also, I did drink a little.... Dipped a q-tip in the lugols solution and then dipped the q-tip in a small amount of water (oz or so) and drank. I drank less than a drop each day of Lugols.

For those who always ask ... it was just plain lugols iodine the only other thing on the bottle is Aqueous Solution.

May God Bless you and end your suffering.


Apple Cider Vinegar

Posted by Anjali (Sydney, Australia) on 07/09/2012
5 out of 5 stars

I've had moderate eczema since I was 2 years old. By the age of 12, with the help of prescription creams, it had been cleared from all parts of my body, except... my face! I'm 22 now.

For the last 10 years, the only place I had eczema was my face, out of all the places it could be! And it was very stubborn, there was nothing I could do to clear it. I have naturally dark skin ( I am of Indian origin) and so the marks on my face were quite dark ( on anglo/white skin they are red) and prominent. I suffered from low self confidence because of this, and was desperate to find a solution, and tried almost every cream the doctor had prescribed.

After many years of trial and error, and this wonderful website, I've found something that works for me and thought that I should share :)

Firstly, eliminate or drastically reduce sugar in your diet. Sugar is white poison they say... Also look out for it in processed foods - you'll be surprised at how much is hidden in there. I also have eliminated dairy from my diet, due to having a mild allergy to it.

On the days I eat lots of sugar, my eczema flares up. I have noticed this time and time again. Eat a healthy balanced diet, with lots of fruit, vegetables, grains, meat (if you aren't vegetarian) and legumes. Limit processed foods with sugar, additives, preservatives. And most importantly, stop the sugar!

I have also noted on many occasions, that drinking plenty of water every day significantly improves my eczema. So stay hydrated!

And the last and final thing, something you'll hear a lot about on this website: unfiltered oragnic apple cider vinegar (ACV). I have been using this for the last 6 weeks and the reults have been amazing, what a huge difference. My face is almost clear, after years of trying, I am so happy!

I consume ACV 3 times a day before each meal. 2 teaspoons dissolved in a glass of water each time. There are a range of benefits - look at this website for more info :)

I also started applying it topically on my face. Now some people mention immediate results from this, ie within 24 hours it has cleared. I had very stubborn eczema, the skin on parts of my face was dark, cracked, and rough, and had been so for many years.

I used a solution of 50% water and 50% ACV and applied it all over my face ( it is excellent as a general toner used daily, even if you don't have eczema). The first 3/4 times I used this solution it stung!!! The skin became irritated, darker, sore, itchier, and small white bubbles appeared under my skin, it looked terrible! My skin settled down after a few minutes, but the apperance hadnt changed. I did this routine for about 4 days, and my eczema patches became slightly worse ( or at least, they looked worse! ) but I persisted, and after a few more days my skin no longer became irritated, and the affected areas started to peel slowly, leaving healthier skin on the areas of my face where the eczema once was.

If I touch it right now, my whole face is smooth, no areas are cracked or sore. It hasn't healed 100%, but if before on a scale of 1 to 10, the eczema on my face was a 7, it is now a 2! Huge difference! I am so happy! The areas of my face that had eczema are still slightly darker than the rest of my face but this shoukd improve in time. In general the skin on my face is glowing too.

I just follow the ACV toner with a good, gentle moisturising cream/lotion. No harmful doctor's prescribed eczema creams with side effects, that have failed me over the years. Just simple, apple cider vinegar - make sure you buy unfiltered and organic!

So eat healthy, drink plenty of water, excercise, keep a positive attitude, and drink and apply topically ACV as per the instructions above.

Ezcema is also caused my stress, so keep a free mind. I'm also thinking of starting yoga soon

Good luck :) and thankyou to Earth Clinic and all its contributers!!


Ted's Eczema Advice

Posted by Ted (Bangkok, Thailand) on 07/10/2008 384 posts

Leslie:

Most eczema, not all, are often a result of a fungus or mycobacterium that exists along the skin or some minute amounts leading to eczema. The condition is often metabolic acidosis which initiates the eczema, but at the same time the ACV have certain properties which may raise the immune system through its malic acid and mineral content found in the ACV. For example the malic acid is converted into malates which is used by the Krebs cycle giving more energy to the cells. If the energy to the cells is increased, the immunity is increased in the long term. The problem about ACV is it's acid content which does kill the fungus and mycobacterium by the actions of malates or organic components that leads to longer term alkalization. But since the body has insufficient bicarbonates to neutralize the acidity, the mycobacterium may cause greater growth when the body is temporarily acid in the short term, and hence the eczema. This eczema is the result of temporary metabolic acidosis.

There is a way to prevent side effects from ACV use by what chemist use to buffer the acidity to make it more alkaline in many consumer products and medicine we used. One of the simplest buffer is the baking soda, which raises the pH of the Apple Cider vinegar to a close 7 or 7.5 pH, which is closer to biologically active pH that doesn't support short term mycobacterium growth. Mycobacterium, fungus, and other usually flourishes in a more acidic pH. Therefore, this remedy was resolved mostly by taking 2 tablespoons of Apple Cider vinegar plus at least 1/4 teaspoon of baking soda in 1/2 or preferably 1 glass of water. Taken usually three times a day. However, if the conditions of eczema is present, usually I will raise the baking soda remedy from 1/4 teaspoon to 1/2 teaspoon of baking soda plus 2 tablespoons of ACV in 1 full glass of water taken at least twice a day instead.

However, I am not dealing with the fundamentals here. I have a bad history of eczema myself. In an attempt to understand the basic cause of eczema just for me I decided to take an experiment with a carbicarb remedy. The carbicarb remedy used by me is 1/4 teaspoon of sodium carbonate (washing soda...a precursor of baking soda) plus 1/4 teaspoon of sodium bicarbonate (baking soda) in one full glass of water taken twice or three times a day will stop the eczema within a matter of an hour at most. For me it stopped within a couple of minutes. Mycobacterium, fungs and bacterium won't generally grow whenever the body's pH is raised to an alkaline level. It is this reason why the Ocean's water is so sterile: salinity and alkalinity. The alkalinity of Ocean's water is 8.

As to where ACV comes in is that the malic acid raises the energy level of cells raising the immunity of the cells at the same time - the cells simply have more energy to fend off invading organisms. There may be other elements found in ACV, such as acetate, which has limited antifungal.

The problem about temporary eczema may go away with ACV use, but in some cases eczema may be persistent too. The issue appears that some people may have limited ability to neutralize the acidity from the ACV using the body's available bicarbonates to neutralized them and hence why baking soda was added to put less pressure on the body to come up with the bicarbonate currency to make it biologically compatible with the body's pH of 7.35. So some cases eczema may persists and some may get better, but if baking soda was added immediately before use, eczema wouldn't flare up, generally speaking.

Am I missing any other factors on eczema besides alkalization and immunity issues? One other additional fact is most people's diet, with industrialized farming practices, has caused humans, cats, dogs, cows, chickens, and pigs to have low level of omega 3. Low level of omega 3 didn't happen in humans first. It happened in farm animals. Chickens source of food were originally high in omega 3, if raise in the wild, but with modern methods, the omega 6 to omega 3 has risen lowering greatly omega 3. This happens in cows in U.S. as farming practices changed from grass fed to grain fed to economize. When we do that omega 3 goes precipitously down.

Omega 3 is responsible for immune conditions and anti-inflammatory properties and reduction in eczema. So much of the problems in the benefits of raw food of Pottinger Cats, and the eating of animal fats from Weston A. Price is useless since the animals we eat today (unlike Weaton A. Price's time) is that the omega 3 has droped precipitiously. So what we have now in U.S. is an Omega 6 to Omega 3 of 20: 1 instead of an ideal 4:1 or 1: 1 omega 3 to omega 6 ratios. Currently the country that has the highest known omega 3 is Japan at 4: 1 or Omega 6 to Omega 3. Fish oil is the supplements I would very likely take for my eczema besides just the baking soda be added to the apple cider vinegar.

However in a more severe cases of eczema I used a stronger alkalization method, which is commonly called the carbicarb remedy as mentioned already, which causes the eczema to go away in a matter of hours. As a hint to further reduction the use of dechlorinator of sodium thiosulfate added to drinking water may further help (chlorines and fluorine are pro-inflammatory) while sodium thiosulfate will at least neutralize the chlorine. A simpler way to remove chlorine is to add a couple of drops of 3% H2O2 per glass of water, such as 2-3 drops, which will neutralize the chlorine.

If there is anything i forget about the other cause of eczema, its that certain foods, such as wheat products, cheese tomatoes, aspartame, potatoes, peanuts, sugar, fruit juices (contains fructose), yeast product, peppermint in toothpastes, and other fermented products are some of the common causes of eczema due to the mycotoxin and fungus content found in these products. Interestingly the reason why antibiotics causes eczema is it is acid forming, raises free heavy metals, and has mycotoxins and fungus. Antibiotics is usually made from fungus, and hence it's no surprise that it causes eczema too. Meats now cause eczema because it raises the body's omega 6 as omega 3 is now reducing. So

I greatly doubt if unethical industrialized farming practices using GMO cows, pigs, chickens raised on grains, cannibalism and steroids injection is going to have much positive impact on practitioners of raw food diet, paleolithic diet, Atkins diet, eat right for your blood type diet, or any other similar diets fads if the foods we are now eating are toxic. The issue that pervades any dietary practice is to avoid bad industrialized farming practices (U.S. may be the worse), which is a lot simpler theory I proposed than the other guru diet fads. Much of my eczema comes from bad farming practices by corporate world. Now we have babies, dogs and cats to worry about because they eat from the same source of food which comes from processed foods and using the same bad farming practices. Perhaps this is where some of the eczema is coming from.

Ted