Maryana Lishman is the founder of Raised on Real Food and a certified Integrative Nutrition Coach who specialises in helping families get clear when exploring a holistic approach to eczema, allergies and beyond. She lives in New Zealand with her husband, daughter and their three rescue animals enjoying good food and coffee, beach walks, traveling and reading. She works with clients worldwide from her virtual clinic, and is the host of the popular Healing Tribe community.
In her own words:
"My daughter developed dry skin immediately after birth, which was dismissed as normal and temporary however it didn't resolve and actually got worse. I visited a GP only to be sternly told off for even questioning how she may have got it, prescribed stronger steroid cream and told it's just bad luck. I didn't accept that. Shortly after, we found ourselves at an after-hours medical clinic with an infant in a huge eczema flare - where we were again dismissed, albeit more gently. I didn't waste any time seeking out a second opinion and this became a key turning point as we were able to pursue allergy testing. At five and a half months, our daughter was diagnosed with multiple allergies to dairy, egg and peanuts, severe enough to warrant carrying an EpiPen Jr at all times. She had not yet had her first bite of food.
She also had lose weight so was deemed Failure to Thrive, with swollen lymph nodes on her neck and dry, itchy and infected skin. The immunologist pressed us to stop breastfeeding, start hypoallergenic formula and use foul smelling pinetarsol baths, steroid creams and thick ointments which didn't make sense. I had no idea the education journey I was about to embark on.
While she napped each day, I researched eczema and allergies, especially the role of the gut and liver, nutrition and lifestyle. At first I resisted it as making changes felt 'too hard' but after she developed her first hive to a bottle of Neocate, that became the point we put my learnings into action!
People were of course skeptical - however improvement was swift. By the time of our follow-up two weeks later, she was back on track with her weight. Within six months, her allergy antibodies had reduced significantly and at her one-year check up, she was clearly thriving. Six months later, we had achieved what we were told would be extremely rare - her peanut allergy score was zero, her egg was near zero and her "severe" milk allergy had dropped over 90%.
I once knew very little and felt the same way as many parents sitting in the hospital waiting room looked - tired, overwhelmed and confused - and managed to transform this journey into one of action, knowedge and gratitude. My goal is to help shortcut results for families and help them reduce or even resolve these symptoms, saving them time, money and angst.
Eczema may be common, but to me it's definitely not normal and we can change the script, turning into a powerful opportunity to acquire valuable insights into what works for our own bodies.
If you need help, it’s easy to book an appointment to get some support and a customised action plan based on your goals, health history and situation. More details can be found by clicking on the WORK WITH ME button above."
All the best,