Dietary & Supplemental Protocols for Rosacea, Keratosis Pilaris and Seborrheic Dermatitis

by 10 · June 14, 2013 at 07:40 PM

Is anyone aware of any specific recommendations for people who have seborrheic dermatitis, keratosis pilaris and rosacea? ie. foods to avoid, nutrients to consume, etc.?

From what I’ve gathered, biotin, omega-3′s, vitamin A/D/E/K, magnesium, zinc, sulfur, vitamin B12, thiamine and nicotinamide all seem to be helpful for those conditions.

Apparently there has been a link observed between SIBO (small intestine bacterial overgrowth) and rosacea. Now considering seborrheic dermatitis, keratosis pilaris and rosacea are all inflammation related disorders and the great importance of gut health to total wellbeing, it seems likely that addressing the SIBO would result in a cessation of symptoms related to any of the aforementioned conditions.

I’ve seen some recommendations for the GAPS diet, a book called Breaking the Vicious Cycle: Intestinal Health Through Diet, the Specific Carbohydrate Diet, an autoimmune paleo protocol and an anti-fodmaps diet. (At this point I still have yet to look into all of these thoroughly)

At this point I’m kind of overwhelmed with all of this info and maybe a little dissatisfied with the truth that a lot of this comes down to self experimentation as there is a lot of individuality when it comes to these conditions and food sensitivities, etc.

I’m pretty strict paleo as it is and have already cut out most of the major pro-inflammatory ‘players’ if not all of them, I suppose a closer look at my diet based on foods mentioned in the recommended texts above combined with some smart supplementation and quite possibly a gut healing protocol may be necessary. I guess what I’m wondering is if there is a single dietary protocol that has already been formed for the 3 skin conditions I have mentioned which I can immediately begin to follow or if I am best off starting with some gut healing protocol.

If anyone has any advice or experience with any of this I would love to hear from you. Thank you.

Total Views

Recent Activity

Last Activity


Get Free Paleo Recipes Instantly

5 Replies

best answer

11648 · August 31, 2012 at 10:09 PM

I don't know if you saw this latest research: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/08/30/mites-rosacea-bacteria-demodex-folliculorum-bacillus-oleronius_n_1844890.html and http://io9.com/5939277/rosacea-could-be-caused-by-mites-unleashing-feces-inside-your-pores

This says that rosacea is actually an immune reaction because of chronic overgrowth of these mites that live under the skin.

What I would do in that case is this: starve them. The same way we do for SIBO/IBS and bacteria overgrowth: we starve them of sugar. In this case, mites eat excess oil in your skin.

It's possible that what happens is this: Chronic internal inflammation due to bad food -> Immune reaction creates more oily face -> Mites eat a lot and overgrow -> Explode under your face -> Immune reaction to their feces

The problem is that you already have the immune reaction, and the immune system requires at least 1 year of being free of the conditions that make it react in order to "forget" about it. Since all of us have mites (they are part of us), it makes it impossible to get rid of this condition completely, since the mites will always be around, no matter how many you can get rid of. So the only solution really is to ease the condition as much as possible. I don't think you will ever be able to fix it 100%.

A Paleo-ketogenic diet (up to 50 gr of net carbs daily) should manage to dry out the skin a bit (or at least bring it back to balance), while our internals, gut bacteria, and immune system need to be fixed too, so I'd go with hard-core Paleo: offal once or twice a week, fermented foods a few times a week, home-made goat kefir daily (fermented for 30 hours), sea veggies, bone marrow broth, more fish/shellfish etc. I would also supplement with D3 (if not going out much), Mg Malate, K2 Mk4, Q10 Ubiquinol, PQQ, E tocotrienols (with no tocopherols in it), and fish oil (if not adequate O3 in diet). Make sure you drink bone broth daily (as-is, or in stews) so the collagen in it helps with skin quality (otherwise, buy Collagen Type I, II, and III pills). All these pills should help you change the pH of your skin, altering the kind of food these mites eat, and hopefully bringing them back to balance. I'd also get this powerful anti-oxidant formula too, to help with the internal inflammation: http://www.biosynergy.com/products/biosnp-inflammation-antioxidant-supplement-formula/

I would avoid putting coconut or bacon oils on your face (as some suggest), this might actually feed the mites. It might, or it might not, you will have to test it yourself.

Every month, I'd go to a specialist for a deep exfoliation of the skin to get rid most of the mites, until there are not many left (and the diet should keep them in balance from that point on). For daily care I'd use some gentle soap to dry out the skin and then a hydration cream.

I'd expect to see good results within 6 months or so. Although this condition feels more like one of these that might need 2-3 years to ease up considerably. If not, I'd be out of ideas to be honest with you.

253 · August 31, 2012 at 10:41 PM

I have been suffering of Seborrheic Dermatitis pretty much all my life (I'm 33 now). I've tried several remedies with no much success. After I started following the Paleo diet (about 4 months ago), as my intestine improved, my Dermatitis went away in a few weeks. Right now, whenever my gut has problems (and it still does sometimes), my Dermatitis seems to come back a little bit (but never as before). So, I find there's a strong correlation between my gut and the Dermatitis. I had Dermatitis everywhere (scalp=hair loss, eyebrows, ears, chest, etc..).

I've made different experiments and kind of adopting the Paleo/Primal protocol with some GAPS adjustments.

In short, I'm doing this (I'm not a doctor, just a self-trained patient as a consequence of my desperation).

Foods I consume: free-range eggs, whole meat and fish, High-Fodmap-free vegetables (only cooked, never raw) and some fruit (always high-foodmap free, mainly berries). The consumption of veggies per day is very low, less than 30 grams (this is because whatever vegetable I ingest, bloating starts again. This is something interesting I found and suggest you to have a look: www.gutsense.org).

I eat tubers everyday (sweet potatoes, carrots and pumpkin, all cooked with lard and coconut oil), since with low-carb, my insomnia gets worse.

I take omega-3 supplement daily. I drink a cup of bone broth at every meal (3 per day), same with water kefir (I started with milk kefir by I'm intolerant to lactose). In the end I take one tablespoon (each meal) of virgin coconut oil.

I don't eat seeds and nuts (although they are Paleo) cause every time I do, my gut gets irritated.

In the morning I drink a cup of organic green tea leaves, Kombucha plus a bottle of filtered water during the day.

I hope this helps.


279 · June 14, 2013 at 07:40 PM

Someone mentioned above that Vitamin A is very important. I agree. My nutritionist recommended Green Pastures' fermented cod liver oil/butter blend for my hormonal acne and keratosis pilaris. I definitely think it has helped my skin, though the KP isn't gone by any means :/ My nutritionist, dermatologist and primary care doc say you either grow out of it or you just have it for life.

825 · September 01, 2012 at 05:31 AM

Thanks for asking this question, looks like some great information already and I can't wait to see what might be relevant to me.

I have only a personal anecdote to add. I've had rosacea as long as I can remember, though only recently formally diagnosed. Wasn't hard, since I am a walking checklist of symptoms. I also have an outbreak of perioral dermatitis to go with it.

Since stepping up and being stricter about my fish oil intake, I've noticed my skin looking a lot better in general, no spotty outbreaks (not so much related to the rosacea but fairly common before, despite being pretty strict Paleo), and much less redness overall. I still look like a tomato after exercise, though. I am also using a topical (metrogel) but the fish oil has definitely had a greater effect. The other tip I randomly picked up from the internets is to use pine tar soap which I am also liking, though to less noticeable effect. I just like the smell (:

I've also read several times that FODMAPs are worth avoiding (or at least, worth experimenting with avoiding). I have not gotten around to trying this yet, mostly because it seems overly difficult and my rosacea is looking ok now, but it's on the radar.

I'm taking an antibiotic for the dermatitis, but it's not completely gone and I'm looking for more diet related solutions now, so I'll see what in this thread might be relevant.

4240 · August 31, 2012 at 10:43 PM


Kinda Gross.

Answer Question

Login to Your PaleoHacks Account