A comprehensive treatment plan for Scleroderma
may include a range of complementary and alternative therapies. Individuals with Scleroderma tend to have deficiencies in many vitamins and minerals. Ask your team of health care providers about the best ways to incorporate these therapies into your overall treatment plan. Always tell your health care provider about the herbs and supplements you are using or considering using.
Following these nutritional tips may help reduce symptoms:
- Try to eliminate potential food allergens, including dairy, wheat (gluten), corn, preservatives, and food additives. Your health care provider may want to test for food sensitivities.
- Eat antioxidant foods, including fruits (such as blueberries, cherries, and tomatoes), and vegetables (such as squash and bell peppers).
- Avoid refined foods such as white breads, pastas, and especially sugar.
- Eat fewer red meats and more lean meats, cold-water fish, tofu (soy, if no allergy) or beans for protein. Quality protein sources, such as organic meat and eggs, whey, and vegetable protein shakes, should be used as part of balanced program aimed at gaining muscle mass and preventing wasting.
- Use healthy oils, such as olive oil or vegetable oil.
- Reduce or eliminate trans-fatty acids, found in commercially baked goods such as cookies, crackers, cakes, French fries, onion rings, donuts, processed foods, and margarine.
- Avoid coffee and other stimulants, alcohol, and tobacco.
- Drink 6 - 8 glasses of filtered water daily.
- Exercise at least 30 minutes daily, five days a week.
You may address nutritional deficiencies with the following supplements:
- A multivitamin daily, containing the antioxidant vitamins A, C, E, the B-complex vitamins, and trace minerals such as magnesium, calcium, zinc and selenium.
- Omega-3 fatty acids, such as fish oil, 1 - 2 capsules or 1 - 3 tablespoonfuls oil, one to three times daily, to help decrease inflammation and help with immunity. Cold-water fish, such as salmon or halibut, are good sources, but are not substitutes for supplementation.
- Vitamin C, 500 - 1000 mg, one to three times daily, as an antioxidant and for immune support.
- L-glutamine, 500 - 1000 mg three times daily, for support of gastrointestinal health and immunity.
- Dihydroepiandosterone (DHEA), start at 5 mg three times a day and work up to 100 mg daily for 7 - 12 months, for hormonal support. It is recommended to use DHEA under the supervision of a qualified health care professional. If adverse effects develop, discontinue use.
- Probiotic supplement (containing Lactobacillus acidophilus), 5 - 10 billion CFUs (colony forming units) a day, when needed for maintenance of gastrointestinal and immune health. You should refrigerate your probiotic supplements for best results.
- Grapefruit seed extract (Citrus paradisi), 100 mg capsule or 5 - 10 drops (in favorite beverage) three times daily when needed, for antibacterial, antifungal, and antiviral activity, and for immunity.
- Resveratrol (from red wine), 50 - 200 mg daily, to help decrease inflammation and for antioxidant effects.
- Coenzyme Q10, 100 - 200 mg at bedtime, for antioxidant and immune activity.
- Melatonin, 2 - 6 mg at bedtime as needed, for immune support and sleep.