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Are Candida and Psoriasis connected?

I am curious because I am not sure whether Candida and Psoriasis are connected or not. I have Psoriasis and read it might go away if I did a Candida diet.
asked Oct 2, 2013 in General Candida Questions by Michael

1 Answer

0 votes

You are quite right to think so. Though there is no direct relation between Candida and psoriasis, i.e., the yeast is not the causative organism of the disease yet it promotes the disorder. So, the jury is still out to debate on the connection between psoriasis and Candida but its overgrowth is found associated with increased cases of psoriasis. In recent times, there are growing evidences of scientific studies which suggest that the immuno-modulatory effects of Candida overgrowth have been found to be a major reason behind the manifestation of the diseased condition.

The basic cause behind psoriasis:

Psoriasis is an auto-immune disorder of the skin. It has long-term association with the affected individuals and there seems to be very little hope with the current traditional mode of therapeutic interventions in the condition says Dr. Chong. Psoriasis is generally caused when your own immune system mistakenly recognizes your skin as non-self and treats it like a pathogen. It then sends impaired signaling to the system that leads to skin cell overproduction. This forms the basis of psoriasis.

How do you know you have psoriasis?
According to Gary Cole, MD, there are well known symptoms of psoriasis that can be easily recognized. Some of the symptoms even correlate to that of Candida overgrowth. Usually, psoriasis gives rise to new skins at a fast pace which eventually results in white, silvery or red patches of thick skin. Under normal conditions skin formation is a gradual process wherein they generally flake off at an interval of ~ four weeks and are replaced by new skins at the outer layers. But if you are suffering from psoriasis this new skin move to the outer surface not in weeks but in days and build up patches referred to as plaques. The yeast Candida just aggravates the situation beyond control. The size of the plaques varies from large to small and are formed just anywhere on the skin- elbow, knee, scalp, feet, back, hand and so on. Psoriasis often results in a social stigma and becomes the reason of embarrassment in many people who become isolated, avoid activities like swimming where they are more likely to show the patches to others.

The Candida link to psoriasis:

A number of scientific studies have demonstrated the connection between psoriasis and Candida. The report of linkage goes back to as early as 1977 when Dr. Ganor published his article regarding the same in the journal Dermatologica. In 1994, Rosenberg et al., found 50% of the patients who received anti-microbial therapies recovered completely from psoriasis. In more recent times, Dr. Berdicevsky suggests that Candida is a critical triggering factor in the exacerbation as well as persistence of the severity as observed in psoriasis. Their study found a high correlationship between the presence of the yeast and psoriasis. The article proposes anti-fungal treatment as an important intervention in psoriatic patients with abnormally higher fecal Candida quantities.  

Why did some of the studies find no connection between Candida and psoriasis?

Now, there are reports which observed no link between the yeast and the skin disorder. One must wonder why this discrepancy between scientific studies related to the matter. However, upon close observation of one such work reveals that it has largely to do with the set up of the study. Flytstrom et al. who found no Candida in psoriatics actually took the samples from the skin lesions of the psoriasis patients. But since, by now you understand that Candida is not a causative agent of psoriasis there is little chance that the investigators could have found the fungal traces from the lesions. But it is the Candida in the digestive tract that produces toxic molecules effectuating immuno-modulatory responses in individuals that is manifested through the skin lesions. So, if there is any chance to find Candida from psoriatic individuals, the fecal sample should be tested.

Recent breakthroughs in the field:

According to a recent work published in the Nature, the microbial composition of an individual acts as a determining factor in the development and progression of some diseased conditions like psoriasis. Dr. Zielinski, the principal author of the work suggests that Interleukin 1b is the major cytokine that takes part in a molecular switch. The presence of Interleukin 1b induces the immune cells to behave in a destructive manner and result in the release of inflammatory molecules. On the other hand, the absence of IL-1b causes anti-inflammatory responses. The yeast Candida modulates the immune system at this juncture.     

Available therapies:

For long, psoriasis has been treated with the use of steroids. This would target the antibodies produced against the self molecules. However, such an approach is not fruitful in the long-term and would yield only superficial benefits by reducing the symptoms of the disease. But it could do little to prevent the actual reason behind the symptoms. If you want total relief from the disease you have to target the yeast Candida.

Current approaches:

There are several ways of limiting the growth of the yeast from the use of anti-mycotic agents to Candida diet. But there is very little respite from the situation for longer periods using such methods particularly if you connect it with psoriasis. In the long run one would like to get rid of the yeast in a natural way, reinstating the microbial flora of the body and alleviate the symptoms of the auto-immune disorder, psoriasis. All these effects can be brought about with the right intake of probiotic strains. In addition, they are also potent in bringing about the desired changes in the immune system which is necessary in the long-term removal of psoriatic symptoms.
But even some of the bacterial strains may worsen the symptoms of psoriasis. Therefore, care must be taken while selecting your probiotic product. A good knowledge about the composition of the specific supplement is necessary. ‘Probacto’ is one such blend of the right combination of probiotic strains in required quantities that can help to fight psoriasis.

Links for further reading:


answered Oct 3, 2013 by Feroj Qualified Member (900 points)