|Vitamins for Scleroderma|
|Saturday, 25 December 2010 09:59|
Scleroderma is a class of diseases in which your skin and organs tighten and harden. This autoimmune condition occurs when your body produces an excess of collagen, a protein that comprises your connective tissues. Scleroderma may affect the skin on your hands and face only. However, it can also affect the internal organs of your body and become a serious health problem. According to the University of Maryland Medical Center, if you have scleroderma you may not receive sufficient vitamins and minerals in your diet, particularly if your gastrointestinal system is damaged. Certain vitamins may help relieve and manage symptoms of this condition.
Your doctor may recommend a vitamin C supplement if you have scleroderma, according to the UMMC. Vitamin C is an antioxidant that can help your body fight damage from free radicals, molecules that cause damage to your cells and tissues. Consuming vitamin C, therefore, may protect you from further damage due to inflammation or infection in the body. Vitamin C-rich foods include oranges, strawberries, broccoli, melons and dark leafy greens.
Beta-Carotene And Vitamin A
Beta-carotene is a precursor for vitamin A in your body. Vitamin A plays an important role in maintaining a healthy immune system and skin condition. People with scleroderma have low levels of beta-carotene in their body, according to the UMMC . This suggests that supplements of beta-carotene may be useful for those with scleroderma. Studies, however, are inconclusive. The UMMC recommends that you consume your beta-carotene from food sources such as carrots, spinach, tomatoes, broccoli, squash, sweet potatoes and pumpkin.
Your doctor may recommend a vitamin E supplement if you have scleroderma, according to the UMMC. Vitamin E is an antioxidant that can protect your body from free radical damage. This prevents and reduces further risk of inflammation, tissue damage and infection in your body. Good dietary sources of vitamin E include vegetable oils, almonds, nut butters, spinach and avocado.
Source: Andrews, J. (2010), "Vitamins for Scleroderma", Livestrong.com. Original article can be viewed here.