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Can Coconut Oil Help Psoriasis Symptoms?



Psoriasis is an autoimmune disorder characterized by the development of painful, itchy, and scaly patches known as plaques on the skin. While traditional medical treatments are often used to control these plaques, some individuals have reported using coconut oil as a potential alternative remedy for managing their psoriasis symptoms effectively.

There is currently no scientific evidence to support this method as an effective treatment or a cure for the condition.

Can Coconut Oil Help Psoriasis Symptoms?

Considering this, coconut oil can serve as an effective moisturizer for individuals with psoriasis. While it may not directly shrink or diminish the size of psoriatic scales, it can provide relief by alleviating the dryness that often accompanies these scales.

While there is no complete cure for psoriasis, medical treatment prescribed by your doctor can effectively manage its symptoms. Additionally, you may find relief from psoriasis symptoms through the use of natural or home remedies.

It’s important to note that home remedies can be variable in their effectiveness, as what works for one person or during one psoriasis flare-up may not work for another. In this article, we explore the potential benefits of using coconut oil as a treatment for psoriasis, along with other home remedies that individuals have found helpful in managing their psoriasis symptoms.

Coconut oil and psoriasis

Coconut oil is a natural moisturizing option known for its ability to combat dry skin, especially during colder months. You can find it in its pure form or as an ingredient in various lotions and ointments, commonly available at health food stores. When dealing with psoriasis plaques on the scalp, the National Psoriasis Foundation suggests massaging coconut oil into the affected areas for relief. For children with psoriasis, the foundation also recommends incorporating coconut oil into a warm bath to provide skin soothing benefits, serving as an alternative to traditional oatmeal baths. After the bath, it’s advisable to gently pat the skin dry rather than vigorously rubbing it.

Combining coconut oil with aloe vera can potentially boost its ability to soften the skin.

Although there are anecdotal reports of coconut oil being used to manage psoriasis, the Natural Medicines Comprehensive Database cautions that there is currently insufficient scientific evidence to support its effectiveness as a treatment for this skin condition.

Scientists have conducted research to explore the use of the treatment in conjunction with ultraviolet light therapy, but the findings yielded inconclusive results.

What is coconut oil?

Coconut oil is experiencing a surge in popularity, being used both topically and in cooking. Its pleasant flavor makes it a versatile ingredient in various dishes, including baked goods. However, it’s worth noting that coconut oil contains a high amount of saturated fat, approximately 90%, which surpasses levels found in butter, lard, or beef fat. While it does contribute to an increase in “good” cholesterol (HDL), it also elevates “bad” cholesterol (LDL) when included in the diet.

Coconut oil can serve as a versatile beauty treatment when applied topically, offering various applications. Some of its beauty uses encompass:

  • moisturizing the skin
  • improving hair texture
  • reducing stretchmarks
  • removing makeup
  • Applying coconut oil to the skin has the potential to reduce inflammation and alleviate skin dryness by reducing water loss from the skin.

Fatty acids offer skin-soothing benefits when addressing psoriasis. Coconut oil, for instance, can be beneficial due to its composition of lauric, capric, and caprylic acids, all of which are types of fatty acids. Lauric acid, found in coconut oil, possesses antimicrobial properties that can help lower the chances of skin infections and irritation. Additionally, coconut oil may aid in softening the skin, which can be particularly helpful for individuals with psoriasis.

Other natural treatments for psoriasis

In addition to conventional treatments like topical ointments, oral and intravenous medications, and light therapy for managing psoriasis symptoms, there is evidence supporting the effectiveness of various natural and alternative approaches in alleviating psoriatic plaques.

Some alternative and home remedies for alleviating the discomfort of psoriasis may include the following:

  • Aloe vera and propolis: In a study conducted in 2018, the combination of aloe vera and propolis, a natural bee product, exhibited encouraging results in the treatment of psoriasis.
  • Fish oil: Incorporating specific fatty acids into your diet can support regular bodily functions and reduce the likelihood of skin irregularities.
  • Probiotics: According to a study conducted in 2013, certain microbial supplements, like Bifidobacterium infantis, have demonstrated the potential to modulate the immune system. This modulation may contribute to the alleviation of the inflammatory effects associated with psoriasis.
  • Bathing with colloidal oatmeal or Epsom salts: There is anecdotal evidence indicating that taking a bath with oats or Epsom salts can provide relief from psoriasis symptoms. Following the bath, applying moisturizer may aid in retaining skin moisture.
  • Exposure to sunlight: Phototherapy is an established treatment for psoriasis, as it utilizes ultraviolet (UV) light to inhibit the rapid growth of skin cells. Natural sunlight also contains UV light, and exposure to the sun for as little as 5 to 10 minutes during its peak around noon can yield comparable therapeutic benefits for individuals with psoriasis.


While some natural remedies are advocated for the treatment of psoriasis, it’s crucial to note that the support for their efficacy is often based on anecdotal evidence, with limited controlled research providing inconclusive results.

Exploring these options is generally low-risk, and if they offer relief in specific situations, they can enhance the overall quality of life for individuals with psoriasis.

Before starting any alternative treatments for psoriasis, it’s crucial to consult with a healthcare professional to ensure they won’t conflict with any prescribed creams or medications. It may be necessary for individuals to explore several treatment options before discovering the one that provides effective relief.


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