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Finding the right food balance that works for you

Baking a cake with flour

This content reflects the views of the individual blogger and is not intended to advise you about your health. Always seek advice from your doctor or other qualified healthcare professionals.

Everyone that knows me, knows that I love food! It’s the one thing I look forward to the most during my days, particularly now that I am working from home.

Why it matters to me

We all know that eating healthy is so important for us, for so many obvious reasons such as our physical health and mental health it also reduces our chances of various diseases and health conditions. I try hard to lead a healthy lifestyle, having a balanced diet along with regular exercise. Eating a balanced diet keeps me in a good mood, helps me manage my stress, and that in turn helps in managing my psoriasis and boosts my confidence.

As someone living with psoriasis, I am aware that I am at higher risk of developing other conditions such as diabetes and cardiovascular disease, so eating well is really important to me. As psoriasis is an immune-mediated condition, my immune system can be triggered by different factors including food leading to inflammation, so I try to make sure I find a healthy balance. It is thought that eating high-fat, high-sugar and processed foods is linked to inflammation, and that may set off my psoriasis so, I try to incorporate foods that my immune system might like, such as lots of fruits and vegetables.

Over my psoriasis journey I have tried a lot of different ways in which I could manage my psoriasis symptoms, especially in the days when I was experiencing severe flare ups and inflammation. This included spending time researching and exploring what foods could have an effect on my psoriasis. There is some literature which links certain foods to psoriasis inflammation however, I have not ever been able to identify what foods or if certain foods do trigger my psoriasis. Because of this I’ve never followed a “psoriasis diet” as such. I have met so many other people living with psoriasis who believe they know exactly what foods trigger their psoriasis but I have never been that person and I’ve come to learn that that is OK. And because of this, my general rule of thumb is to generally eat healthily but not deny myself, eat everything but in moderation. But if you are thinking about altering your diet to help your skin, its always best to have a chat with your doctor first.

How I manage my balance with my passion for baking?

I have to admit, I have a bit of a sweet tooth, especially when it comes to cakes! I particularly enjoy baking in my spare time. My sister and I bake a lot and it is something we enjoy doing together. This is particularly something we’ve been doing a lot of since the first lockdown.

I think this is important especially with our “new normal” lifestyle to get into good habits (and I know, easier said than done!). I generally like to meal plan my lunches and dinners for the week ahead. I like to keep a planned, healthy diet throughout the week, Monday to Friday, allowing the weekends to be the days that I indulge a little more and spend my time baking. More recently, I’ve been trying to incorporate some healthier ideas in my baking recipes, for example baking items with oats in it as a protein source or cutting down the sugars in a recipe.

Here is what works for me

  • Balance out the bad with the good. Try and incorporate fruits and vegetables where you can. I like my routines, so I try to have a portion of fruits during a tea break in my working day. I try to have a lunch full of vegetables, so I can allow a slightly naughtier treat or dinner later in the day.

  • Make a plan. If I’m good in the day or most of the week, I can also allow some time for my sweet treats.

  • Do what feels right for you. It may be that someone else’s triggers will not be your triggers too. I think it’s important to find a balance that works for you. And this will take time through trial and error.

  • Baby steps are key. This is really important. Take each day at a time. You’re allowed “bad days” and “cheat days”. After all you have to enjoy life too, and if food does that for you then so be it.

  • Be patient with yourself. Don’t be too hard on yourself.

    These are just some of the tips I’ve picked up along the way. I hope a few may help you too!

  • MAT-40201 November 2020

    Blog post developed in partnership with LEO Pharma.

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