Learn about a host of diabetes-related topics such as how many Americans suffer from this disease to how to easily adjust to a new diet after diagnoses. This section will provide you with the information you need to make informed dietary decisions regarding diabetes.

How Type 2 Diabetes and Psoriasis May Be Linked

While poor lifestyle factors are known to raise the risk of psoriasis, a newer link between psoriasis and diabetes is becoming more explored. So what actually is psoriasis and how might this growing health concern be interconnected?


Type 2 diabetes is a rising health condition in which glucose from carbohydrate-containing food sources are not able to become efficiently transformed into usable energy in the body. And while poor lifestyle factors are known to raise the risk of the condition, a newer link between psoriasis and diabetes is becoming more explored. So what actually is psoriasis and how might this growing health concern be interconnected?

Understanding Psoriasis

Psoriasis is an autoimmune disease, meaning the body's own immune system essentially goes haywire. People with psoriasis have accelerated skin growth, causing new skin cells to surface in a matter of days rather than weeks. And instead of shedding off new skin cells, they accumulate and appear as raised, red, scaly patches to appear on the skin and causes an itchy, burning, or stinging sensation. The condition often coordinates with other health conditions, including diabetes, though the cause is not directly known. Researchers do know, though, that psoriasis is affected largely by immune responses and genetics, generally leading to flare-ups following various triggers, including the environmental and lifestyle factors.

The Link Between Psoriasis and Diabetes

Multiple studies have implied individuals living with psoriasis have a greater risk of developing diabetes. In fact, individuals with a severe psoriasis case may double their probability of managing diabetes later down the road. And while the link between psoriasis and diabetes is not well-known, researchers speculate the following theories:

Inflammatory Conditions

Both psoriasis and diabetes are a cause of chronic inflammation. Additionally, inflammation caused by psoriasis may also increase insulin-growth factor, demonstrating a potential link to diabetes.

Intermingled Disorders

Psoriasis and diabetes have intermingled, shared health disorders along with rising rates of obesity. Being overweight or obese poses an exceptionally strong link, as it heightens the risk of chronic inflammation and conditions, including high cholesterol and blood pressure that are often seen in individuals with psoriasis and diabetes.

Lifestyle Factors

Lifestyle factors play a large role in health and disease status, including instigating or affecting psoriasis and diabetes. Poor lifestyle habits, including an innutritious diet and living sedentary, can also lead to weight gain, instigating risk and complications of the conditions.

Genetic Roots

Underlying genetic factors may predispose individuals with psoriasis and diabetes. However, lifestyle factors should not be discounted, as healthcare experts generally suggest poor habits may exacerbate the underlying genetic cause.

Despite the uncertainty, the relationship poses on opportunity for individuals to visualize diabetes risk to the naked eye. They are ultimately on the forefront of their own health and can change lifestyle habits. Adapting a well-balanced diet and regular exercise are helpful on their own, but their ability to curate weight loss or maintenance is also extremely noteworthy, especially bearing in mind overweight and obesity heightens the risk of both inflammatory conditions. Other considerations for a healthy lifestyle include managing stress, achieving adequate sleep, reducing alcohol consumption, stopping cigarette smoking, and taking good care of your skin, including the use of moisturizers and sunscreen.

Written By Sydney Lappe, MS, RDN. Published on May 22, 2017. Updated on August 18, 2017.


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