Is Seaweed Good for Psoriasis [Symptoms, Causes, & Treatments]

By Algal Web

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In the realm of psoriasis, a condition impacting 125 million worldwide, the search for effective solutions persists. Seaweed, often overlooked, emerges as a promising contender for managing psoriasis symptoms

This article navigates through psoriasis types, their causes, and symptoms, shedding light on the potential of various seaweed species.

Scientific insights will uncover how seaweed might offer relief, providing a holistic perspective on psoriasis management.

Various Types of Psoriasis

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Psoriasis, a multifaceted skin condition marked by the accelerated production of skin cells, manifests in several distinct types, each presenting unique challenges.

Understanding these variations is essential for effective management and tailored treatment approaches.

1. Plaque Psoriasis:

Plaque psoriasis, the most prevalent form, arises from an immune system dysfunction known as T-cell activation.

In this process, T cells mistakenly target healthy skin cells, triggering an inflammatory response. 

This immune system hyperactivity accelerates skin cell turnover, resulting in raised, red patches covered with a silvery-white coating, known as plaques.

These plaques often appear on the elbows, knees, and scalp, causing itching and discomfort.

2. Guttate Psoriasis:

Guttate psoriasis typically manifests in response to streptococcal throat infections, emphasizing a link between environmental triggers and its onset. Genetic predisposition is also a contributing factor. 

Characterized by small, drop-shaped lesions, this type commonly affects the trunk, limbs, and scalp. It is more prevalent in children and young adults.

3. Inverse Psoriasis:

Inverse psoriasis is primarily triggered by friction and sweating, especially in skin folds. Genetic factors also play a role in its development. Unlike other types, inverse psoriasis lacks the typical scaling seen in plaques. 

Instead, it appears as smooth, red patches in areas prone to friction, such as the armpits, groin, and under the breasts.

4. Pustular Psoriasis:

Pustular psoriasis is often associated with the overuse of certain medications, sudden withdrawal from systemic steroids, or infections. The condition is characterized by the formation of white, pus-filled blisters on red skin. 

Depending on the extent of involvement, it can be localized or generalized.

5. Erythrodermic Psoriasis:

Erythrodermic psoriasis is a rare and severe form that can be triggered by severe sunburn, withdrawal from systemic treatment, or the exacerbation of an existing psoriasis form. 

It leads to widespread redness and scaling across the body, often accompanied by intense itching and pain.

6. Psoriatic Arthritis:

Psoriatic arthritis is an inflammatory joint condition associated with psoriasis. It results from an immune system response that not only affects the skin but also targets the joints and connective tissues. 

Genetic factors and an overactive immune system contribute to the development of psoriatic arthritis.

Causes and Risk Factors of Psoriasis

While the specific causes of psoriasis remain complex, certain factors contribute to its development and exacerbation across different types.

1. Immune System Dysfunction:

A crucial element in various psoriasis types is an immune system dysfunction, specifically T-cell activation.

T cells mistakenly attack healthy skin cells, triggering an inflammatory response and rapid skin cell turnover, leading to the characteristic symptoms of psoriasis.

2. Genetic Predisposition:

A family history of psoriasis increases the likelihood of developing the condition.

Specific genetic factors, including variations in certain genes, contribute to an individual’s susceptibility to psoriasis.

3. Environmental Triggers:

Environmental factors, including infections, stress, and certain medications, can act as triggers for psoriasis.

Streptococcal infections, in particular, are linked to the onset or exacerbation of guttate psoriasis.

4. Physical Trauma:

Injury to the skin, such as cuts, bruises, or sunburn, can trigger the onset or worsening of psoriasis symptoms.

The trauma prompts an inflammatory response and activates the immune system, contributing to psoriasis flare-ups.

5. Medication and Treatment Withdrawal:

Abrupt withdrawal from systemic steroids or the overuse of certain medications, especially corticosteroids, can lead to the development of pustular or erythrodermic psoriasis.

This highlights the delicate balance required in managing psoriasis through medications.

6. Hormonal Changes:

Fluctuations in hormones, often seen in women during puberty, pregnancy, and menopause, can influence the onset or exacerbation of psoriasis.

The interplay between hormonal changes and immune system responses contributes to the complexity of psoriasis development.

Having explored psoriasis types and their triggers, our focus now shifts to seaweed’s potential benefits. In the next section, we’ll investigate specific seaweed types and their unique contributions to managing psoriasis symptoms, guided by scientific research.

Which Type of Seaweed is Good for Psoriasis?

Seaweed, a treasure trove of bioactive compounds, has garnered attention for its potential therapeutic effects on psoriasis.

Different types of seaweed offer unique compounds, each with distinct properties that may contribute to managing psoriasis symptoms.

1. Brown Seaweed (Alaria esculenta):

Brown seaweed, particularly Alaria esculenta, is rich in fucoidan, a sulfated polysaccharide known for its anti-inflammatory properties. Fucoidan has shown promise in inhibiting inflammatory pathways associated with psoriasis. 

Additionally, polyphenols found in brown seaweed exhibit antioxidant effects, contributing to overall skin health.

2. Red Seaweed (Palmaria palmata):

Palmaria palmata, a red seaweed, stands out for its antioxidant-rich composition. Astaxanthin, a potent antioxidant found in red seaweed, has demonstrated anti-inflammatory effects, potentially alleviating psoriasis symptoms. 

Phycobiliproteins, another component, contribute to the seaweed’s anti-inflammatory properties.

3. Green Seaweed (Ulva lactuca):

Ulva lactuca, a green seaweed, offers a spectrum of nutrients, including chlorophyll, vitamins, and minerals. Chlorophyll’s anti-inflammatory properties may assist in mitigating inflammation associated with psoriasis. 

The overall nutrient profile contributes to skin health and may complement psoriasis management.

4. Fucus vesiculosus (Bladderwrack):

Fucus vesiculosus, commonly known as bladderwrack, is a brown seaweed containing fucoidan and alginates. These compounds exhibit anti-inflammatory effects, potentially modulating the immune response involved in psoriasis. 

Bladderwrack’s richness in iodine may also benefit individuals with psoriasis, as iodine deficiency is linked to skin disorders.

5. Sargassum spp.:

Sargassum species, brown seaweeds, offer fucoxanthin and fucoidan. Fucoxanthin’s antioxidant properties may contribute to reducing oxidative stress associated with psoriasis. 

Fucoidan, with its anti-inflammatory effects, holds the potential to alleviate inflammation and support overall skin health.

6. Chondrus crispus (Irish Moss):

Chondrus crispus, or Irish Moss, is a red seaweed rich in carrageenan and sulfated polysaccharides. These compounds exhibit anti-inflammatory effects, potentially modulating immune responses relevant to psoriasis. 

Irish Moss’s mucilaginous properties may also provide a soothing effect on the skin.

Concluding our examination of seaweed types for psoriasis, we now pivot to its broader treatment potential. 

In the next section, we delve into scientific insights, exploring how seaweed’s anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties may hold promise for managing psoriasis.

The Potential of Seaweed in the Treatment of Psoriasis

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Psoriasis, a widespread chronic autoimmune skin condition affecting over 125 million people globally, manifests in red, scaly patches that can be both physically and emotionally distressing. 

Although a definitive cure remains elusive, various treatments aim to manage its symptoms.

In recent years, attention has turned to seaweed, a marine algae rich in nutrients like vitamins, minerals, antioxidants, and polysaccharides, for its potential in psoriasis treatment. 

These components are known for their anti-inflammatory and immune-modulating effects, offering a promising avenue for addressing psoriasis symptoms.

Scientific Research Findings

Several studies have explored the therapeutic potential of seaweed in psoriasis treatment, revealing encouraging findings:

1. Topical Seaweed Extract:

The 2010 study, published in Phytotherapy Research, investigated the effectiveness of a topical seaweed extract in reducing psoriasis severity.

The study observed a significant improvement in symptoms, suggesting the potential of seaweed in topical applications for managing psoriasis.

2. Fucoidan in Psoriasis Lesions:

The 2012 study, featured in Marine Drugs, focused on fucoidan, a polysaccharide found in seaweed. The research demonstrated the efficacy of fucoidan in reducing inflammation in psoriasis lesions. 

This highlights the specific compounds within seaweed that exhibit anti-inflammatory properties relevant to psoriasis.

3. Seaweed Extracts with UVB Light Therapy:

In 2015, Experimental Dermatology published a study showcasing the effectiveness of a combination of seaweed extracts and ultraviolet B (UVB) light therapy. 

The combination treatment demonstrated superior results compared to UVB light therapy alone, emphasizing the potential synergistic effects of seaweed extracts in conjunction with established psoriasis therapies.

While the exact mechanisms behind seaweed’s benefits for psoriasis remain partially understood, its anti-inflammatory and immune-modulating effects are thought to play a pivotal role. 

Seaweed’s antioxidants may protect skin cells from free radical damage, contributing to inflammation. Polysaccharides in seaweed may modulate the immune system, potentially reducing its activity against skin cells, a hallmark of psoriasis.

Seaweed can be incorporated into one’s diet as a supplement in the form of capsules, tablets, or powder, offering a source of vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants. 

However, the effectiveness of seaweed supplements in treating psoriasis requires further research. While promising, it is crucial to consult healthcare professionals before integrating seaweed into a psoriasis management plan.

How Does Seaweed Therapy Help?

Seaweed therapy, embraced for its potential in psoriasis management, operates through a spectrum of mechanisms, each contributing to the amelioration of psoriasis symptoms.

1. Anti-Inflammatory Properties:

Seaweed, brimming with bioactive compounds like fucoidan, stands as a potent ally against inflammation a hallmark of psoriasis. 

Fucoidan, demonstrated in various studies, exhibits the ability to quell inflammatory pathways, offering relief to individuals grappling with psoriasis symptoms.

By addressing inflammation at its core, seaweed contributes significantly to mitigating redness, swelling, and discomfort associated with psoriatic lesions.

2. Immunomodulation:

Psoriasis is characterized by an immune system gone awry, attacking skin cells and triggering flare-ups.

Seaweed therapy, owing to its polysaccharide content, potentially modulates this immune hyperactivity. 

While the precise mechanisms are still being elucidated, studies indicate that seaweed may help in balancing immune responses, thereby reducing the frequency and severity of psoriasis episodes.

3. Antioxidant Defense:

Oxidative stress, a contributor to psoriasis symptoms, finds a formidable adversary in seaweed’s rich antioxidant arsenal.

Astaxanthin, polyphenols, and other antioxidants present in seaweed neutralize free radicals, offering a defense against cell damage. 

By curbing oxidative stress, seaweed contributes to the overall well-being of skin cells, potentially providing a preventive measure against psoriasis exacerbations.

4. Nutrient Enrichment:

Beyond its specific compounds, seaweed is a nutritional powerhouse, delivering a bounty of vitamins, minerals, and essential nutrients. This nutrient-rich profile nourishes the skin and supports its overall health. 

While the direct impact on psoriasis requires more investigation, the holistic approach of nutrient enrichment aligns with the broader understanding of a well-nourished skin barrier.

5. Topical Application and Skin Hydration:

Seaweed’s versatility extends to topical applications, offering a direct and targeted approach. Creams, gels, or masks infused with seaweed provide localized exposure, leveraging the hydrating and soothing properties of seaweed. 

This aids in alleviating the dryness and irritation often accompanying psoriatic lesions, enhancing overall comfort for individuals managing psoriasis.

6. Complementary Treatment:

Seaweed therapy operates as a complement to existing psoriasis treatments, fostering a synergistic effect. Integrating seaweed therapy into a comprehensive treatment plan, as suggested by research, may enhance the overall efficacy of psoriasis management. 

This complementary approach acknowledges the multifaceted nature of psoriasis and leverages seaweed’s diverse benefits to provide a more holistic solution.

Concluding our insights into seaweed therapy for psoriasis, we now turn to a specific application: seaweed baths.

In the next section, we explore whether immersing oneself in seaweed-infused baths holds promise in the holistic treatment of psoriasis symptoms.

What Seaweed Baths Are? Does it Actually Help in Treating Psoriasis?

Seaweed baths, a time-honored practice with roots in various coastal cultures, have garnered attention for their potential therapeutic benefits in managing psoriasis symptoms. 

Understanding the essence of seaweed baths and their impact on psoriasis involves unraveling the intricacies of both the seaweed properties and the bathing experience itself.

1. The Essence of Seaweed Baths:

Seaweed baths involve immersing oneself in warm water infused with seaweed extracts or actual seaweed. The practice draws on the rich nutritional profile of seaweed, including vitamins, minerals, polysaccharides, and antioxidants. 

This immersion allows the skin to absorb these beneficial compounds, offering a direct and concentrated application.

2. Potential Benefits for Psoriasis:

While scientific studies specifically focusing on seaweed baths for psoriasis are limited, the potential benefits can be extrapolated from the known properties of seaweed.

The key elements contributing to potential benefits include:

  • Anti-Inflammatory Effects: Seaweed’s anti-inflammatory compounds, such as fucoidan, may help soothe inflamed skin, a common feature of psoriasis.
  • Nutrient Enrichment: The vitamins and minerals present in seaweed contribute to skin nourishment, promoting overall skin health and potentially supporting psoriasis management.
  • Hydration and Soothing: Seaweed’s hydrating properties may alleviate dryness, a prevalent issue in psoriatic lesions, offering relief and soothing the skin.

3. Considerations and Caution:

While seaweed baths hold promise, caution is warranted. Individuals with psoriasis should be mindful of their specific skin sensitivities and potential allergies to certain seaweed species.

Additionally, the water temperature should be moderate, as hot water can exacerbate psoriasis symptoms.

4. Complementing Overall Psoriasis Management:

Seaweed baths are not a standalone treatment for psoriasis but can be integrated into a holistic management plan.

Combining seaweed baths with other established treatments, as prescribed by healthcare professionals, may offer a complementary approach, addressing psoriasis from multiple angles.

5. DIY Seaweed Baths and Commercial Products:

Seaweed baths can be experienced at home by adding seaweed extracts or dried seaweed to a bath.

Alternatively, commercial seaweed bath products are available, offering convenience and standardized formulations.

These products often combine seaweed with other skin-soothing ingredients.

6. Individual Responses and Professional Guidance:

It’s crucial to recognize that individual responses to seaweed baths may vary. Some individuals may find relief and improvement in psoriasis symptoms, while others may not experience significant changes. 

Consulting healthcare professionals before incorporating seaweed baths into a psoriasis management plan ensures personalized advice based on individual health considerations.

As we conclude our insights into the potential benefits of seaweed baths for psoriasis, our exploration takes a dietary turn in the next section. 

Here, we delve into the nutritional dimensions of seaweed consumption, exploring how its rich array of nutrients may contribute to the holistic management of psoriasis.

Incorporating Seaweed Into Your Diet

Beyond topical applications and baths, the integration of seaweed into one’s diet unfolds as a promising avenue in the comprehensive management of psoriasis. 

Seaweed, brimming with a diverse array of nutrients, presents an intriguing proposition for individuals seeking holistic approaches to support skin health.

1. Seaweed Nutritional Profile:

Seaweed emerges as a nutritional powerhouse, delivering an array of essential nutrients crucial for overall well-being.

Among its notable components are iodine, vital for thyroid function; antioxidant-rich vitamins (A, C, E) contributing to skin health; essential minerals like calcium, iron, and magnesium; and omega-3 fatty acids known for their anti-inflammatory effects.

2. Potential Benefits for Psoriasis:

Delving into how seaweed’s nutrients interact with the body unveils potential benefits for psoriasis management. Omega-3 fatty acids and antioxidants may mitigate inflammation, a central driver of psoriasis. 

The iodine content supports thyroid function, which, when balanced, may positively influence psoriasis symptoms. The vitamins and minerals in seaweed contribute to overall skin health, potentially aiding in psoriasis symptom management.

3. Types of Seaweed for Consumption:

Various seaweed types offer unique flavors and nutritional profiles, making them versatile additions to the diet. Nori, commonly used in sushi, is rich in vitamin B12 and iron. Dulse, with its savory flavor, provides protein and potassium. 

Kelp, high in iodine and calcium, finds its place in soups and salads. Wakame, containing fucoxanthin with antioxidant properties, adds depth to various dishes.

4. Culinary Incorporation:

Seamlessly integrating seaweed into your diet involves exploring diverse culinary avenues.

Dulse or wakame can enhance the nutritional profile of salads. Kelp contributes depth of flavor and nutrients to various soups.

Roasted nori sheets serve as a flavorful and nutritious snack.

5. Dietary Supplements:

For those less inclined towards culinary exploration, seaweed supplements in the form of capsules or powders offer a convenient option.

These supplements provide a concentrated dose of seaweed nutrients, simplifying the process of dietary incorporation.

6. Individual Considerations and Moderation:

Individual considerations play a pivotal role in the success of dietary seaweed incorporation.

While seaweed offers a wealth of nutrients, moderation is key to preventing excessive iodine intake, which may lead to complications. 

Balancing consumption ensures a harmonious integration into one’s diet.

7. Consultation with Healthcare Professionals:

Before embarking on a significant dietary shift, especially for individuals with existing health conditions like psoriasis, consulting healthcare professionals is crucial. 

They can provide personalized advice, considering individual health profiles and potential interactions with existing treatments.

Now, let’s shift our focus to the realm of skincare in the upcoming section, Unveiling the potential benefits of seaweed-infused formulations, we delve into how these products might offer a rejuvenating touch in the holistic approach to psoriasis care.

Exploring Seaweed-Based Skin Care Products

Seaweed, with its rich composition of vitamins, minerals, antioxidants, and polysaccharides, has transcended traditional skincare practices to become a focal point in modern skincare.

The market now boasts a diverse array of seaweed-infused products, each harnessing the skin-loving properties of this marine treasure.

1. 100% PURE Irish Sea Moss Cleansing Gel:

Delve into purity with this gentle cleanser, a symphony of Irish sea moss’s enriching properties.

A treasure trove of vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants, it delicately removes impurities, leaving your skin refreshed.

The infusion of turmeric and essential vitamins elevates its cleansing prowess, creating a holistic experience that nurtures and revitalizes your skin.

2. The Body Shop Seaweed Oil-Control Gel Cream:

Tailored for the needs of oily and combination skin, this lightweight gel cream is a savior in controlling oil production and minimizing shine.

The inclusion of seaweed extract brings a natural balance, ensuring your skin feels refreshed and regulated. Embrace this gel cream for a daily ritual that harmonizes and revitalizes your complexion.

3. Mario Badescu Seaweed Night Cream:

Experience luxury in every night’s skincare routine with this rich night cream. Imbued with seaweed extract, hyaluronic acid, and squalane, it provides a deeply nourishing experience.

Let the cream work its magic overnight, replenishing and hydrating your skin for a morning glow that reflects a well-rested and revitalized complexion.

4. Origins Make A Difference™ Nature’s Defense Shield Advanced Multi-C Antioxidant Day Cream:

Step into the shield of protection against environmental stressors with this antioxidant-rich day cream.

Seamlessly blending seaweed extract, vitamin C, and white tea extract, it becomes your ally in maintaining skin health.

Revel in a daily ritual that not only shields but also promotes a healthy radiance, combating the effects of the day.

5. Korres Golden Greek Mask:

Indulge in opulence with this golden mask, a fusion of seaweed extract, honey, and yogurt. Beyond hydration, this mask is a lavish experience that nourishes and revitalizes the skin.

Let the blend of luxurious ingredients transport you to a spa-like retreat, leaving your skin feeling pampered, supple, and infused with a golden glow.

6. Tata Harper Purifying Seaweed Cleanser:

Elevate your cleansing routine with this gentle yet effective cleanser. Infused with a blend of seaweed extracts, including Irish moss and kelp, it goes beyond impurity removal.

Enjoy the softness and hydration it imparts to your skin, making each cleanse a refreshing and nourishing experience.

7. Herbivore Seaweed Pore Detox Mask:

Unleash the power of deep cleansing with this detox mask, a marriage of seaweed extracts, green clay, and activated charcoal.

It draws out impurities, refines pores, and diminishes the appearance of blackheads.

Embrace the detoxifying journey for a revitalized complexion that feels refreshed and renewed.

8. AHC Aqualuronic Luminous Watery Cream:

Immerse your skin in a watery embrace with this lightweight moisturizer. Featuring seawater, seaweed extract, and hyaluronic acid, it delivers deep hydration and replenishment.

Let your skin revel in the supple and revitalized sensation, creating a luminous touch that enhances your skincare routine.

Incorporating these seaweed-based skincare gems into your routine offers a curated experience of nature’s bounty.

Each product, with its unique formulation, caters to different skincare needs, promising a journey of nourishment, balance, and rejuvenation for your skin.


In summary, our exploration into the relationship between seaweed and psoriasis reveals a promising synergy.

From understanding psoriasis types and causes to unveiling seaweed’s potential in baths, diets, and skincare products, this journey signifies a holistic approach to skin well-being. 

Seaweed emerges as a natural ally, supported by scientific findings, offering a multifaceted avenue for psoriasis management.

Whether in the therapeutic embrace of a seaweed bath or the sensorial experience of skincare products, seaweed stands as a testament to the fusion of tradition and innovation in the pursuit of skin health.


Is saltwater good or bad for psoriasis?

Saltwater, particularly in the context of seaweed baths, can be beneficial for individuals with psoriasis.

The mineral-rich composition of seawater, enriched further by the presence of seaweed, offers potential relief without the harsh effects associated with some traditional treatments.

The minerals, including magnesium, calcium, and potassium, may contribute to the skin’s health, potentially reducing inflammation and soothing psoriasis symptoms.

Seaweed baths become a gentle and natural alternative, harnessing the therapeutic qualities of the sea without the irritation often associated with other treatments.

Can psoriasis go away permanently?

Psoriasis, classified as a chronic condition, lacks a definitive cure. However, effective management strategies can lead to prolonged periods of remission.

The individual nature of psoriasis responses emphasizes the importance of personalized approaches to treatment. Scientifically-supported methods, such as those involving seaweed, demonstrate potential in symptom management.

While permanent resolution may not be universal, long-term remission becomes achievable through tailored and holistic strategies that address the unique needs of each individual.

Is seaweed good for itchy skin?

Absolutely. Seaweed’s anti-inflammatory properties, validated by scientific studies, position it as a natural remedy for alleviating itchy skin often associated with psoriasis.

The unique composition of seaweed, including antioxidants and polysaccharides, contributes to its ability to soothe irritation. Seaweed-based skincare products, such as cleansers and masks, emerge as viable options for managing itchiness.

The gentleness of these products, coupled with their potential to reduce inflammation, aligns with the goal of providing relief without exacerbating skin irritation.

Is seaweed soap good for eczema?

While eczema and psoriasis present distinct challenges, the soothing properties of seaweed can potentially benefit individuals with eczema as well.

Seaweed-infused soaps, with their hydrating and nutrient-rich composition, offer a gentle cleansing option. The unique blend of vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants in seaweed contributes to maintaining skin health.

However, individual responses to skincare products vary, emphasizing the importance of personalized approaches in addressing the specific needs and sensitivities associated with eczema.