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Old 12-12-2007, 05:19 PM   #1
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vegangirl HB User
Skin itches at night - why???

I am at the end of my rope! The last few weeks I have started itching in random places on my body all night long. I thought it was the new perfumed body wash and lotion, so I quit using them for a while - didn't make any difference. Sometimes, the itching is during the day as well, but it's the most bothersome when I'm in bed.

I've also been thinking that maybe it's diet related. We started eating a vegan diet about 4 months ago. Actually, you could call me a vegan on training wheels because I'm still learning what to and what not to eat. Our goal is to lower cholesterol and weight as well as rid ourselves of animal fat and toxins that we've been eating all these years. Hubby did some reading about animal products and their effects on the human body. That's the logic anyway, but I don't feel so good!

My nights of insomnia are at an all time high, and I usually take 2 Tylenol PMs about 3 to 4 times a week. I've been doing that for about 3 years or so. I know I shouldn't, due to danger to the liver. So, now I'm wondering if the itchy skin is because I have liver damage, or some kind of vitamin deficiency due to the vegan diet we're on.

I have a doctor appointment tomorrow and I'll let her know what's been going on and I'm planning on getting my blood work done just to compare my cholesterol level from 4 months ago to now.

Does anyone have any suggestions on any other tests I should ask for? Has anyone else had a similar experience with this skin itching problem?

 
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Old 12-12-2007, 06:00 PM   #2
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Re: Skin itches at night - why???

First of all, the skin: when you stopped using the perfumed body wash/lotion, did you wash the sheets? Barring that, a more likely cause: dust mite allergy. See if you can get some allergy testing done (it would suck if you're vegan and allergic to soy, for instance, although you can do it).

Secondly, the "PM" in Tylenol PM is plain old diphenhydramine (AKA Benedryl). If you don't need the pain relief from the Tylenol, just get a generic OTC allergy relief med with diphenhydramine in it. Less expensive, and not hepatotoxic (bad for the liver).

 
Old 12-12-2007, 06:09 PM   #3
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Re: Skin itches at night - why???

dustoffkid - I washed the sheets as soon as I made the connection that it could be the perfume. The mattress is very new, about 4 months or so and organic latex with a mattress protector on it. I've heard of dust mites being in mattresses and causing allergies, etc......So, I hope that's not it.

I will check into your suggestion of taking an OTC benadryl for drowsiness. Didn't think of that before and wonder if that would be safe to take with the 2.5mg of Lexapro I take daily. I'll find out.

Thanks for the info.

 
Old 12-12-2007, 10:35 PM   #4
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Re: Skin itches at night - why???

Also....

You seem to be pretty sharp, so kick me if this is too obvious, but are you drinking plenty of water and taking a multivitamin? They have vegan ones at the health food stores.

 
Old 12-13-2007, 06:23 AM   #5
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Re: Skin itches at night - why???

Are you getting enough fat in your diet? I know it's hard to switch to a vegan diet if you are used to something very different. You need to learn a whole new menu.

Anyway, lack of proper dietary fat can cause skin problems. Most nutritionists recommend you get about 20%-30% of calories from fat, including different types of fat (saturated, monounsaurated, polyunsaturated). In a 2000 calorie diet, that's about 45-65 grams of fat total. Good vegan sources include seeds, nuts, and (favorites of mine) avocado and tofu. One whole California avocado has about half your daily fat alotment, mostly in monounsaturated form. 90 cashews have all the fat you need, not that you could eat that many in one day, nor should you get all your fat from one source.

I might be totally off base with all this, but I thought I'd throw it out there.

 
Old 12-13-2007, 09:10 AM   #6
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Re: Skin itches at night - why???

Actually, I haven't been drinking as much water as I should, so I better start as of now. I'm going to get some vitamins as well, just didn't know they made some for vegans. Also, I went out and got a cheaper brand of benadryl and slept like a baby last night. No itching either! Thanks for the info dustoffkid!

 
Old 12-13-2007, 10:19 PM   #7
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dustoffkid HB Userdustoffkid HB User
Re: Skin itches at night - why???

Glad to help. I was vegan for about seven years, and I know how hard it can be. On the water issue, if you are taking an antihistamine (like Benadryl) you need to up the water intake even more. It takes practice, but you can make water a habit.

 
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