The skin microbiome and psoriasis: An emerging relationship

Background Information:

Psoriasis is an autoimmune disease that affects 1-3% of the world’s population and is influenced by both genetic and environmental factors, such as diet, stress-level, skin-care routine, etc. (Alekseyenko et al., 2013). People with psoriasis suffer from lesions (often called plaques) of dry, red, itchy, inflamed, and often “scaly” skin (Langley et al., 2005). Lesions are created, in part, by an overactive inflammatory response in the skin, as well as the increased division of specific cells of the epidermis. In the recent past, researchers have specifically identified immune cells that play a role in this process by producing chemicals that increase inflammation (Chang et al., 2018; Lowes et al., 2008). Continue reading “The skin microbiome and psoriasis: An emerging relationship”

What happens to your microbiome when you stop eating gluten?

The Gluten-free Diet

Celiac Disease is an autoimmune condition in which the immune system mistakenly attacks and damages the villi of the small intestine when it detects gluten. This damage can cause pain, fatigue, and diarrhea. If left untreated it can lead to complications such as infertility or cancer. Only a small number of people- around one percent of the population- actually suffer from Celiac Disease. A gluten-free diet is used as treatment for both celiac disease and non-celiac gluten sensitivity. Even though it is unknown whether a gluten-free diet is beneficial to people who do not have Celiac Disease, many people have adopted a gluten-free diet to eat healthier or lose weight. The number of people eating gluten-free is rising, with 17% of Americans actively avoid including gluten in their diet (Riffkin 2015). Continue reading “What happens to your microbiome when you stop eating gluten?”