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Sugar Sensitivity: Itchy Skin
The term sugar sensitivity is a catch-all phrase for a number of medical situations. **This sensitivity might be a food allergy or a physical reaction to increased blood sugar levels.
** If eating refined sugar products causes your skin to itch, the most likely scenario is an allergic reaction.
Refined sugar may also be a trigger for a chronic skin conditions, such as eczema. Only your doctor can properly diagnose your situation and determine the basis for your sugar sensitivity and resulting itchy skin.
A food allergy is an abnormal reaction by the immune system to a food. When some substances enter or come in contact with the body, the immune system erroneously detects harm. According to the University of Maryland Medical Center, true food allergies are not that common 12.
What some people deem to be an allergy may actually be an intolerant to a food. Intolerance is not an immune system response. It is a difficulty digesting or processing a food type, such a sugar. Symptoms of a true food allergy include hives, swelling, itching skin or a skin rash. Some food allergies may trigger chronic skin conditions like eczema.
Read more about glucose allergy symptoms.
- A food allergy is an abnormal reaction by the immune system to a food.
- What some people deem to be an allergy may actually be an intolerant to a food.
Symptoms of a Sugar Allergy
Eczema is a chronic skin condition that causes patches of extremely dry skin to itch, crack and blister. The exact origin of eczema is unknown; however, heredity may play a role. Irritants may trigger an eczema outbreak. Exposure to cigarette smoke, detergents, harsh weather or wool clothing may start to irritate skin. **The University of Maryland Medical Center recommends individuals diagnosed with eczema avoid food triggers as well, one of which may be refined sugar 12.
It is possible sensitivity to sugar may cause an outbreak of eczema. ** You should see your doctor to determine if your itchy skin is actually eczema.
Read more about what causes eczema to flare up.
- Eczema is a chronic skin condition that causes patches of extremely dry skin to itch, crack and blister.
- It is possible sensitivity to sugar may cause an outbreak of eczema.
Your chronically dry skin may not have anything to do with how much sugar you eat. Dry skin can have many sources. MayoClinic.com explains most dry skin comes from environmental factors 3.
Exposure to hot or cold weather and changes in humidity can lead to lack of moisture on the skin surface. Other things to consider include excessive bathing, use of a lotion and exposure to harsh chemicals or detergents. All these factors may come together to dry skin and create itchy spots.
- Your chronically dry skin may not have anything to do with how much sugar you eat.
- Exposure to hot or cold weather and changes in humidity can lead to lack of moisture on the skin surface.
Chocolate & Eczema
If you have itchy skin, it is vital that you discover why. The best way to do this is to see your doctor. Start keeping a journal of all the foods that you eat daily and make note of every time you have an outbreak. This will help you determine the correlation between food and your skin problem. Start applying a body lotion to your skin daily. Reduce the amount of time you spend bathing and use only lukewarm water. For skin that itches, apply an over-the-counter hydrocortisone cream to affected areas. If your journal notations show that sugar sensitivity may be an issue, cut all sugar products out of your diet and reduce the amount of carbohydrates you eat.
- If you have itchy skin, it is vital that you discover why.
- If your journal notations show that sugar sensitivity may be an issue, cut all sugar products out of your diet and reduce the amount of carbohydrates you eat.
Scratching your skin will expose you to a potentially serious bacterial infection known as cellulitis. With cellulitis, bacteria invade the opening in the skin and infect the underlying tissue.
Complications of cellulitis include a blood infection that can be potentially life-threatening.
If your itchy skin shows sign of infection, such as red areas, swelling and discharge, see your doctor for treatment. Food allergies can also be potentially life-threatening. If after eating sugar you develop large raised areas of skin that itch, feel a tightening in your throat or have difficulty breathing, go to the emergency room or call 911. This may be an indication of a severe allergy that requires immediate medical assistance.
- Scratching your skin will expose you to a potentially serious bacterial infection known as cellulitis.
- If your itchy skin shows sign of infection, such as red areas, swelling and discharge, see your doctor for treatment.
Symptoms of a Sugar Allergy
Chocolate & Eczema
Do Tomatoes Aggravate Eczema?
How to Avoid Sugar If You Have Staph Infections
Food Allergies That Produce a Rash on the Face
Allergy to Cane Sugar, Not Refined Sugar
What Causes Eczema to Flare Up?
Can Infection Raise Blood Sugar Levels in Nondiabetics?
An Allergy to Stevia
Sugar Intolerance in Children
- University of Maryland Medical Center: Food Allergy
- University of Maryland Medical Center: Eczema
- MayoClinic.com: Dry Skin: Complications
- American Diabetes Association: Making Healthy Food Choices
- Murota H, Yamaga K, Ono E, Murayama N, Yokozeki H, Katayama I. Why does sweat lead to the development of itch in atopic dermatitis?. Exp Dermatol. 2019;28(12):1416-1421. doi:10.1111/exd.13981
- David Boothe W, Tarbox JA, Tarbox MB. Atopic dermatitis: Pathophysiology. Adv Exp Med Biol. 2017;1027:21-37. doi:10.1007/978-3-319-64804-0_3
- US National Library of Medicine, Genetics Home Reference. FLG gene. Filaggrin. Updated January 21, 2020.
Writing since 1999, Darla Ferrara is an award-winning author who specializes in health, diet, fitness and computer technology. She has been published in "Mezzo Magazine" and Diet Spotlight, as well as various online magazines. Ferrara studied biology and emergency medical technology at the University of Nebraska and Southeast Community College.