Q. My father and his mother both had psoriasis on their shins and elbows, so when I developed this problem at age 50, I thought I was just stuck with it.
I started filling gel caps with cooking grade turmeric and taking several each day for joint pain. My joints are healthier, but the psoriasis completely disappeared! We buy turmeric by the pound at East Indian cooking stores.
A. Turmeric (Curcuma longa) is the yellow spice that gives curry powder its distinctive color. Thai researchers investigated the activity of this herb in a skin cell line and found that it has the potential to work against psoriasis (Molecules, online May 10, 2011).
One component, curcumin, appears to be responsible. While physicians await the results of clinical trials (Cellular and Molecular Life Sciences, June, 2008), we are pleased to hear of your success.
A word of caution for others who plan to try this: turmeric may interact with warfarin (Coumadin) to increase the risk of bleeding. Some people also experience allergic reactions.