Skin in Health and Disease

Some Topics

Dermatitis Herpetiformis

Dermatitis Herpetiformis (DH), a skin disease, is another manifestation of  gluten or wheat allergy. It is characterized by urticarial plaques and blisters on the elbows, buttocks, and knees, although other sites may also be involved. The eruption tends to be persistent: only 10-15% of patients have spontaneous remission over a 25-year study period. The disease is characterized by the presence of IgA deposits in the upper dermis. The HLA-B8 gene is found in 80% of patients with gluten enteropathy and dermatitis herpetiformis.

In DH, clusters of itchy skin bumps, and small blisters appear on the legs, sacrum, buttocks and back - the extensor surfaces of the body. Intense, "dives-me-crazy" itching is typical. As the lesions mature, the skin tends to be red, thickened, bumpy and scratching adds injury to insult. The skin inflammation is typical of a delayed, cell-mediated hypersensitivity reaction. Gluten proteins from ingested wheat  and other grains find their way to the afflicted skin and trigger an immune attack.

The lesions of DH are visible models of how food antigens can bring an inflammatory attack into an organ system and reek havoc. In the skin the inflammation is uncomfortable, but in a more critical organ, the inflammation can have disastrous effects. DH clears completely when all gluten is eliminated from the diet, although healing usually takes several weeks to occur.

Although people with DH and celiac disease often come to their diagnosis by different routes and may not recognize their kinship, both groups are allergic to gluten and have similar risks of developing any or many of the associated diseases. Patients with DH have a high incidence of auto-immune disorders, thyroid disease, pernicious anemia, and insulin-dependent diabetes. As with celiac disease, there is an increased incidence of lymphoma and a gluten-free diet appears to protect patients.

The drugs, Dapsone, sulphapyridine or sulphamethoxypyridazine have been used to suppress the skin manifestation. It takes several months for the skin to improve on these drugs and they do not protect against the serious complication of gluten hypersensitivity. The drugs also have numerous side effects and should not be necessary if treatment begins with a complete food holiday and continues with the Alpha Nutrition Program method of diet design.

The person with DH may not realize that they have major disturbance in their digestive tract but studies have shown similar if not identical disease processes.   T-lymphocytes  in the small intestinal mucosa of celiac disease and dermatitis herpetiformis subjects on a normal diet has been studied and compared to normal controls. The small intestine is a site of vigorous T-cell activity in gluten-sensitive individuals and is consistent with the view that the enteropathy of dermatitis herpetiformis and celiac disease is the result of a delayed-type hypersensitivity  reactions triggered by wheat proteins.

We encourage anyone who has been diagnosed with DH to order the Gluten Rescue Starter Pack  and recover by doing complete diet revision.

Celiac Disease

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Skin in Health and Disease is a book about skin health, skin care that offers solutions to specific skin disorders through diet revision an improved nutrition. The good news for many suffers some chronic skin disorders is that complete diet revision will often improve and sometimes resolve skin symptoms. This book focuses on the most common skin disorders that can be controlled by changes in skin care, diet and the environment. Eczema, for example, is sometimes an expression of food allergy, or allergy to contact materials. Dermatologist may deny the food allergy causes, so that their patients often have to make independent decisions. In all aspects of medicine, we advocate responsible self-management and offer this book as primer and reference for self-managers with skin problems.


The book, Skin in Heath and Disease is intended to be used with the Alpha Nutrition Program. This text provides background knowledge, helpful in understanding skin disorders and the relevance of diet revision. Often a food holiday on Alpha ENF is the best way to begin recovery and the Alpha Nutrition program is an ideal way to design a safer, healthier long-term diet. If diet revision is appropriate to solve your Skin Disorders, you can order the the Starter Pack Option.

Starter Packs bundle the Alpha Nutrition Program, with other books and formulas to help you get started solving your health problems. The starter packs are sold at discounts to make it easier and affordable for you to learn more and try our nutrient formulas. If you are not ready for the starter pack, Order Books Separately.

All Alpha Nutrition Books, Formulas and Starter Packs are ordered at Alpha Online. Physical shipments by the Post Office to all destinations in Canada and the USA.  eBooks are downloaded and can be delivered to any destination on the planet. Click the Download button to order and download PDF files from Alpha Online.

Alpha Online is a hub for twenty five Medical Information Centers. Each center acts as its own web site with a home page and a list of links to relevant topics. Take advantage of 800 pages of text which describe common medical problems and introduce you to innovative solutions such as Alpha ENF and the Alpha Nutrition Program.

Alpha Nutrition is a trademark and a division of Environmed Research Inc., founded in 1984 at Vancouver, BC, Canada. Online Since 1995.
 Experts in Self-Managed Care. Experts in Elemental Nutrient Formulas. Head Office is located in Sechelt on the Sunshine Coast, British Columbia.
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