Psoriasis and Obesity, What Can You Do?

Psoriasis is a chronic autoimmune disease that causes inflammation of the skin, leading to signs and symptoms such as skin lesions, itching, and even pain.

This inflammation in the skin is caused by molecules called cytokines.

When we put on weight, the adipose tissue (responsible for storing fats) also produces cytokines, which generate an inflammatory response in our body similar to psoriasis.

People Who Suffer From Psoriasis Are More Likely to Obesity

People with psoriasis are more likely than others to be obese. Plus, it can make the condition worse and more difficult to treat if you have extra pounds.

They although, seem more likely to have higher levels of the obesity-associated hormone leptin than those without the skin disease.

Leptin is produced by fat cells and is thought to contribute to obesity in other metabolic abnormalities.

The people with psoriasis were significantly higher odds s to be obese and having hypertension and high blood sugar levels or diabetes.

Elevated leptin levels were found more frequently in women, participants with obesity, and in those with hypertension, metabolic syndrome, or psoriasis.

Furthermore, these higher levels of the hormone in psoriasis were associated with an increased risk of developing metabolic syndrome.

The findings thus link chronic inflammation in psoriasis to metabolic disorders.

The elevated leptin levels in psoriasis patients may derive not only from fatty tissue but also from inflammation.

No doctor knows what comes first, but long-term inflammation throughout the body is something the two conditions have in common.

Fat cells may be able to initiate the inflammation. There is good evidence that the more you weigh, the more severe your psoriasis is.

Psoriasis is a chronic autoimmune disease that causes the skin to become inflamed, leading to signs and symptoms such as skin lesions, itching, and even pain.

This inflammation in the skin is caused by molecules called cytokines.

When you gain weight, adipose tissue (responsible for storing fats) also produces cytokines, which generate an inflammatory response in your body similar to psoriasis.

Therefore, as we gain weight (and as our adipose tissue increases), the degree of inflammation also increases, and it can worsen psoriasis or be a factor that contributes to the development of the disease.

Psoriasis and Obesity

Therefore, weight loss can improve psoriasis in obese people.

On the other side, many people with psoriasis do not exercise, either because of the discomfort related to clothes getting on their skin, because they are embarrassed by their appearance, or because they feel pain, which is common when there is a condition called psoriatic arthritis.

Psoriasis goes far beyond a skin disease and can cause depression leading to poor diet and the consumption of antidepressants, which can also contribute to weight gain.

The link between psoriasis and overweight is a two-way street: obesity can increase the chances of getting or worsening psoriasis, and psoriasis increases the risk of weight gain.

Weight Loss Is Helpful in Overcoming Psoriasis

Psoriasis and obesity are both inflammatory conditions that heighten the risk of a variety of health problems, including heart disease, type 2 diabetes, liver disease, and even some forms of cancer.

So losing weight will reduce the body’s inflammation.

This translates into lower blood pressure, glucose metabolism improvements, reduced blood fats, and liver inflammation reversal.

Additionally, losing weight can also reduce psoriasis severity and enhance the effectiveness of medicines.

Weight loss and the control of psoriasis medication can work together to improve the symptoms of psoriasis in overweight people with psoriatic arthritis.

Even though weight loss may not prevent the onset or improve psoriasis severity forever, it is still a good improvement to your overall health.

So, weight loss itself is already considered a big win!

However, it would help if you always kept in mind that there is no reason to suffer from psoriasis lesions and let them limit your life any further.

Nowadays, regardless of the severity of your psoriasis, the goal of treatment is to achieve lesion-free or nearly lesion-free skin.

Since weight loss is connected to increased physical activity and a proper diet, everyone with psoriasis should be motivated to modify their lifestyle.

Besides helping to lose weight, regular exercise can also help reduce pain, swelling, and stiffness of the joints (in the case of psoriatic arthritis), always under professional guidance and clearance.

These lifestyle changes may be started slowly and gradually integrated into your new daily routine.

Useful Recommendations in Your Particular Diet

Losing weight is very beneficial when you have psoriasis, but there are some foods that not only help you lose the desired weight but are also recommended as helpful for psoriatic skin.

Whole Grain:

These are considered low glycemic index carbohydrates and are also sources of fiber, vitamins, and minerals.

Foods with a low glycemic index can decrease inflammation and thus the symptoms of psoriasis.


Fish are sources of omega-3 and 6 polyunsaturated fatty acids, which have high anti-inflammatory activity, and are rich in B vitamins, vitamin A, and minerals such as selenium.

This helps reduce the appearance of plaques, erythema, scaling, and itching.

Give preference to tuna, sardines, trout, or salmon


Besides being high in fiber, they also offer a good supply of vitamins and minerals, such as vitamin E, selenium, and magnesium, for example. Seeds also help prevent the inflammatory process and reduce the symptoms of the disease.


Varying your fruit intake daily increases the amount of fiber in your diet and ensures a good intake of vitamins and minerals, such as B vitamins, vitamins C and E, potassium, magnesium, and even flavonoids. Vitamin intake helps repair damage to the skin.


They offer a good supply of fiber and are sources of vitamin A, vitamin C, and folic acid. These act as antioxidants, reducing inflammation and, therefore, the symptoms of psoriasis.


Oils and olive oils are good sources of polyunsaturated fatty acids, which help decrease the inflammatory process. Some of them are also sources of vitamin E, such as vegetable oils.


Overweight and excess adiposity favors the development of dermatological diseases.

Managing overweight and obesity, therefore, appears to be an essential part of psoriasis prevention strategies, particularly in families prone to this autoimmune disease.

It is also crucial in patients who already have psoriasis to reduce the disease’s severity and ensure better efficacy of treatments for this dermatological condition.