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Pemphigus Vulgaris Diet

Pemphigus can be described as an autoimmune disorder, which has a severe impact on your skin. This condition is characterized by the presence of painful blisters, bumps and scabs on the surface of the skin. At times, you could also suffer from blisters in and around the mouth because of this condition. There are three types of pemphigus and all of them vary in intensity. Studies indicate that this condition is quite rare, as it occurs in about one out of a million people.

However, instances of pemphigus are much higher in the Mediterranean region, as compared to the rest of the world. The least severe type of pemphigus is pemphigus foliaceus, which can be treated quite easily. Pemphigus vulgaris is the most commonly type of pemphigus and can be quite severe. However, the most severe form of this condition is Paraneoplastic pemphigus, which is also the rarest form.

Not a lot of people are aware of the importance of adequate pemphigus nutrition, since it is a skin disorder. While it is true that there is no specific pemphigus vulgaris diet, there are several different foods that can trigger off an outbreak if you are suffering from the disorder. Given below are some of the foods that aggravate the condition and therefore should be eliminated from a pemphigus diet:

Food to Avoid for Pemphigus Vulgaris


Foods that contain Tannins

Tannins can be found in a wide variety of foods as well as beverages. People suffering from the condition should avoid fruits and vegetables like:

  • Apples
  • Avocadoes
  • Bananas
  • Blackberries
  • Cherries
  • Cranberries
  • Eggplant
  • Grape skin
  • Mangoes
  • Pears
  • Persimmons
  • Raspberries

Some of the other common pemphigus foods to be avoided, because of high tannins content include:

  • Alcoholic beverages like wine and beer
  • Arrowroot
  • Black pepper
  • Black walnuts
  • Certain varieties of tea
  • Cocoa seeds
  • Coffee
  • Coriander
  • Cumin
  • Garlic
  • Ginger
  • Ginseng
  • Kola nuts
  • Rosemary
  • Soft drinks
  • Yucca

Foods that contain Isothiocyanates

There are several different vegetables that contain isothiocyanates and therefore cause an outbreak in people with the disorder. Given below are some of the foods that are high in isothiocyanates and should be avoided:

  • Broccoli
  • Brussels sprouts
  • Cabbage
  • Cauliflower
  • Mustard and mustard oil
  • Radish and horseradish
  • Seasoned sauces that contain mustard oil for flavoring
  • Turnip
  • Winter cress

Foods that contain Thiols

Those foods that are high in thiols have been known to trigger off an outbreak of pemphigus vulgaris in people. Given below are some of the common pemphigus vulgaris food triggers containing thiols:

  • Chives
  • Garlic
  • Leeks
  • Onions
  • Shallots

Foods that contain Phenols

Phenols are mainly found in the form of cinnamic acid, in many different food items, such as:

  • Baked goods
  • Beverages
  • Candy
  • Fruit juice
  • Ice cream
  • Sauces and condiments

There are several other foods too, that are high in phenols, which include:

  • Bananas
  • Black pepper
  • Mangoes
  • Milk and other dairy products
  • Potatoes
  • Tomatoes

It is also important to avoid fried food, oily or greasy food, any form of sugar, caffeinated beverages, alcohol, soft drinks, dairy products, salty food, hot spices, refined food, and so on.

Pemphigus vulgaris often leads to the formation of blisters in the mouth and therefore, you need to watch everything you eat. Avoiding hard, sharp and crusty food is an important part of pemphigus vulgaris nutrition, especially during the blistering period. Sharp edged foods can scrape against your mouth and throat, further tearing the blisters. The erosions that are healing may also be reopened if you swallow such foods. As a result, you could experience a lot of pain and discomfort. The risks of infection also increase in case you eat a lot of hard foods.

As you can see, there are several types of food that you need to avoid, when you are following a pemphigus diet. This probably makes you wonder what types of foods you could eat on a regular basis. Before you start incorporating any foods into your normal diet, it is important for you to consult a doctor. Your health care provider will check your blood group, the severity of the condition and your medical history before recommending suitable foods for you.

Apart from food, there are several medicines that have also been known to cause pemphigus outbreaks. Some of the medications that can trigger off the problem include ritampicin, penicillamine and captopul. Therefore, if you are taking any of these medicines, you need to speak to your doctor about a change in medication. One of the drugs that can control pemphigus is prednisone. However, this drug works best when accompanied by the right diet. Make sure that you never change your medication, without getting an approval from your doctor. You also need to get a go ahead from your health care provider before you take any pemphigus dietary supplements.

There is a slot of information on this disorder, as well as the diet that needs to be followed in case you are suffering from it. However, such information should only be used as a reference; it is important for you to ensure that the condition is monitored and treated by a doctor at all times.
Submitted on January 16, 2014