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Itchy, red skin rash on face especially around eyes


I am a 38 year old female in relatively good health. I am a mostly raw vegan, run and practice yoga for exercise. For about 3 months, soon after I went mostly raw in my eating, i developed a red, itchy skin rash on areas of my face. The only major change that I made to my diet was including many more nuts than before, though I soak them now to ease digestion. I have never had any nut allergies in the past. I have also tried eliminating them one at a time for a week or so to see if this helps, but it really hasn't that I can tell.

The rash is the worst at the corners and under my eyes, though also appears around the sides of my mouth. Mostly raised redness with small white bumps. Sometimes it is worse and more noticeable and itchy, and other times not so bad, but always there. I also recently have developed a few large pustules in on my chin and neck

I also have had lower back weakness and soreness for the last several months, though these do not restrict my activity. I have also had minor sciatica that varies between my butt and hamstrings on and off for 10 years or so. Right now it occasionally affects my right inner thigh area and hamstring. I occasionally have minor shooting pains (kind of like a dull ache) in my right, lower abdomen. I had my third child 14 months ago and never regained my period after. I figured it was from breastfeeding, though now I only nurse him in the AM and PM and not for long as he mostly eats real food. I crave sweets and creamy, sweet foods like organic dark chocolate, cocoa, maple syrup and almond butter. I used to use a lot of stevia but cut back on that, wondering if it was part of the problem.

I did the Master Cleanse recently for 11 days hoping to get rid of the rash. I felt great, but the rash remains.

I have been under a lot of emotional stress recently in my life, and I have 3 small children. On the surface I appear to handle all well, but the above symptoms would show differently.

I have been taking Sulphur 30x and Rhus Tox 30x 4 pills 4x day for about 5 days as they appeared to best fit my symptoms. The rash was much worse for the first several days and now appears a bit better, though still there. I also added Hyland's Hives yesterday and I took 2 pills 3x. It has Apis, Urtica Urens, Nat Mur, and Ars Album.

Help! Any ideas anyone has would be greatly appreciated. Thanks in advance!
  nfadfriese on 2007-10-30
This is just a forum. Assume posts are not from medical professionals.
Do you live around Poison Ivy?
girilal last decade
Yes. I have never known myself to be allergic to it before, but my Mom is. I also have 3 dogs that I am sure have been in it at some time. Why would it be around my eyes and face and not other places though?

Thanks for your reply!
nfadfriese last decade
If it were poison ivy, what do you suggest I try for it?

Any other ideas welcome as well. I am willing to try anything at this point.

Thanks in advance!
nfadfriese last decade
In all my cases where poison ivy was the cause, everything else failed. Only Rhus Toxicodendron 30C worked.

Take Rhus Toxicodendron 30C once a day for a week.

Symptoms may persist but in less severity, then take one dose once a week but take medicine till you are symptom free.
girilal last decade
Thanks, I will try it. I am now hoping that this is poison ivy. I am not sure what the distinguishing characteristics of Poison Ivy are, if anyone does, please let me know.

I know we have some in the woods behind our house. I just never worried about it before.

I was taking Rhus Tox, though I think it was 30x, not 30 c. Is 30x OK until I can find 30c?

Thanks again girilal!

If anyone has any other ideas what this might be in case it's not Poison Ivy please let me know.
nfadfriese last decade
i have the same thing right now only it is under my left eye. i woke up with it a few days ago and i found it interesting you said you have been eating more nuts lately. i just got a bag of raw nuts about 1 1/2 weeks ago and i have been eating more them . . . which i usually do not have them in the house. i wonder if the nuts do have something to do with it?!?! and as far as the poison ivy rash, i dont know what that looks like but we have poison oak around where i live and it is a red pusy itchy (crazy itchy, i had that before) rash. i am going to try tea tree oil on my face i and i am going to stop eating the nuts. i will post whether or not it helps. good luck!!!
lolosmom last decade
I have been using tea tree oil and it has not really helped me much. Maybe you will have better luck.

The rash is sometimes better and sometimes worse, but always there at some level. I know some nuts like cashews have a toxic coating until they are shelled that can cause a reaction in some people. I stopped eating them for a while - like 10 days or
so two different times, but it didn't seem to make much difference.

I do eat many other kinds of nuts though - tons of almonds, some pecans, pistachios, walnuts, pumpkin seeds, sunflower seeds etc.

What kind of nuts are you eating?

As far as poison ivy, doesn't that eventually go away on its own, even if a treatment doesn't work? If it does, then that must not be what I have since I have had this rash since July, which is around when I stopped eating tofu and soy products and began eating all the nuts. There must be some kind of connection.

BTW - I have been taking Rhus Tox 30x daily as the 30c hasn't reached me yet, but no real difference.

Help, anyone....
nfadfriese last decade
yes, i believe if it were poison ivy it would be long gone. as far as the kind of nuts i have been eating . . . they are shelled and raw . . . almonds, brazil nuts, cashews, and a small round (almost like an acorn) nut. i hope the rhus tox works for you. i have never heard of it . . . have you tried oral benedryl yet? i think i am going to take that tonight and see if it makes a difference. if it is an allergy it should. i'll let you know if it helps!
lolosmom last decade
happy and hope not speaking too soon but benedryl definitely helped. i would recommend you try it. if the rhus tox is for poison ivy only i would think you could stop taking it. the only way you would still have poison ivy from what i know is if you somehow burnt and inhaled it (what is what i did - not knowing what the plant looked like - with the poison oak clearing our property). and from the way mine rash responded to the benedryl i took last night before bed i think food allergy may be it. please try it, i think it may help. by the way i have 3 children also and know it can be stressfull, hang in there!
lolosmom last decade
Have you considered either contact dermatitis or rosacea? Look it up on the net and have a read, your symptoms sound similar.
alleycat13 last decade
oh man,
my sympathies.
i experienced the exact same issue after being on a strict vegan diet.
i figured i wasn't getting enough fat---therefore my face was dry, aswell as my hair.
this is my second time being vegan,
and i am more knowledgeble and healthy vegan.
but yet,
i sit here,
red rash under eye, googling 'red rash under eye' and still find myself recieving explanations such as 'your pet has fleas; your lack of b vitamins makes you more susceptible to fleas; it has to be fleas.'
my sympathies.
penelop3pestova last decade
I have the red eye thing, and cannot find the cure, but I am pretty sure it is allergies along with other toxins such as candida, hormones, etc. Add stress, and it flares up.

I had a sister go thru a similar thing, and her MD found out that my intuition was correct, but not resolved. She was told to do:

A detox, and finding the main allergens, which can be things like dust mites, metals, mold/mildew & foods. Typically something you are doing daily and don't think is it.

Change your linens and seal off your mattress/pillows, and change to a mild, non-blue colored detergent. Go without makeup for awhile, and see if it helps. Gradually add things in and you will notice the flare up, but not too soon so confused over factor.

Usually allergy foods are fairly easy to find as they are foods you tend to eat or want to eat a lot. Allergists state that nuts, corn, shellfish, strawberries, and nightshades (potatoes, tomatoes, etc.) are often factors.

Of course processed foods are to be avoided and dairy and gluten affect much of the population.

I am on a detox, and Claritin and it has helped, and was recommended to take Chinese Herbs for the eyes, and they have made a big difference, but not resolved it yet.
elation last decade
I get a red, dry, flakey rash between my eyebrows and in the creases of my nose and down to my mouth whenever I eat toasted nuts or grains.

This includes delicious beverages like Teechino, roasted Japanese barley tea, and Gen Mai cha.

I also get it if I eat too much chocolate.

I've had it for years, and it annoys the heck out of me, because the things that aggravate it are all things I LOVE.

So, I feel for you. I wish I had an answer, but my solution is to simply avoid the things I know give it to me.

It takes about 2 days of 'clean eating' for my skin to clear up after the redness appears.
JennyRobertson last decade
Wondering if you ever solved your rash problem? I have a small rash in the crows feet area of my left eye. It's recently become a bit worse and has been persistently with me for the past couple of months. I have no other symptoms.

Anyone have any ideas?
wondergreen last decade
Hello- nfadfriese

I too have a very similar situation going on. My redness/flakes/bumps are under my eyes, and around my mouth. Mine, too emerged after going mostly raw.

I saw a dermatologist who said its an inflammation issue. I was to try an expensive creme they prescribe for people with rosacia... it hasn't done a thing.

I've also tried Emu Oil- nothing.

Nystatin, an antifungal- nothing.

I've also noticed that being in the sun makes it worse.

I am going to see a different dermatologist this month and will report what I learn.

I will also see a nutritionist next week and be tested for tomatoes... I have had a TON of these this summer and wonder (seeing an earlier post) if its related.

I have liver cleansed, yeast cleansed and parasite cleansed.

I simply do not understand how I could possibly have issues when I eat so well- nearly all veggies. I'm not heavy with nuts at all...

My diet does not include the following:
cow milk, cow cheese, yellow/white corn, pork, eggs, gluten. Beef is extremely rare.

I juice often and rebound often.

Let me know if you have had any positive changes!

gulf-to-mountains last decade
Nuts are a source of vitamin E and too much of that can cause a rash around the eyes as you described. Try reducing your E intake.
jewelgall77 last decade
Hi, were you able to resolve your allergic reaction? I too have the same problem and dont know where to look for a solution. But it seems you, myself and others on forum have one common thing - eating nuts. If you have solved yours, please let me know what you did. Again, my rash is around the eyes and neck, and corner of lips as well. I eat almonds, sunflower, pumpkin, walnuts, just like you did. Any suggestions? Thanks so much.
alkarr last decade
My rash is somewhat under control. I use three different types of dandruff shampoo in rotation (Selsun Blue, T-Gel, and Nizoral AD), and leave a bit on my face when I shower. That helps control the symptoms.

I've also found that taking anti-histamine eye drops before bed also helps a lot.

The rash is still exacerbated by dietary fat; I get it when I take fish oil supplements, eat too much of one type of fat, or drink lots of roasted beverages. It comes and goes, and is still somewhat mysterious to me.

JennyRobertson last decade
Thanks for the quick reply. Do you still eat nuts?
alkarr last decade

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