We know that what you put IN your body is as important as what you put ON it. The only way to learn your personal triggers is to pay attention to what you are putting on and in your body and then notice how your symptoms respond.
Spicy foods. This is a common one to watch. If you notice an increase in tingling, redness, painful new blisters or a spread of affected areas after a Thai curry with extra chilies or Taco Tuesday, then spicy food may be a trigger for you.
Caffeine. For the latte lover, this one is tragic. Caffeine appears to be a perioral dermatitis trigger for some people. While you're probably already limiting your caffeine intake during pregnancy, this is one to pay attention to.
Salt, oil, acids. These 3 triggers can all fall under the umbrella of things that go “ON” the skin in addition to “IN” the body. Greasy foods like fries and chips, acidic things like citrus and vinegar, salty things. All worth paying attention to when you're keeping a food diary.
Goodbye, shoestring french fries. It’s only for a little while.
- Is there a yeast connection? There has been some discussion about whether or not perioral dermatitis is linked to candida. If you have a lot of yeast infections, thrush, or have previously dealt with candida overgrowth, it may be something you want to check out with your doctor, midwife or a nutritionist.
If you suspect there’s a link between your PD and certain foods, it is really worth investigating!
Which leads me to a couple of helpful suggestions.
- Food based sources of probiotics*. We know that the gut is linked to skin issues. You can get probiotic benefits from eating yogurt with active cultures, kefir, miso soup, pickled foods, and dark chocolate.
- Food based sources of zinc*. Allergies allowing, you might add pumpkin seeds, sesame seeds, spinach, chickpeas, shitaki mushrooms, and fresh green peas to your diet. Plus? Throw in some organic dark chocolate with a high percentage of cacao. Shave some over a midnight snack of antioxidant rich strawberries, what’s not to love?
If you are struggling with perioral dermatitis and skin outbreaks during your pregnancy, it can really help to pay close attention to food-based triggers and increase foods that promote gut health.
Perioral dermatitis can be healed.
*Always run any dietary supplements past your midwife or doctor first. Some things can be toxic for you and/or baby at elevated levels.