I have run across a case of eczema that did not respond to the usual course of antiparasitics. It required EFA (essential fatty acid) supplementation.

This may have not been true eczema, but more eczema- like symptoms. I was clued into this potential treatment by someone who said that their infant had (what a doctor had diagnosed as) eczema and was prescribed cortisone. One day, the kid got into some butter and ate a large amount, and his skin condition improved dramatically in hours, much to the surprise of his parents. They then continued to give him all the butter he wanted, and his "eczema" disappeared altogether.

There are a small amount of EFAs in butter. This and extra virgin olive oil (and some vegetables) are about the only sources of undamaged EFAs in the average american's diet, but neither are good sources of them. Eating margarine and other damaged fats inhibits the absorption of what little EFAs are normally eaten.

There are products now available at some health food stores in the refrigerated sections that are much better than butter or olive oil. Arrowhead Mills makes an EFA supplement called "Essential Balance" that costs about $8. I have also seen hemp oil in this section, and it is even better than most blends, but is expensive - about double the cost of Essential Balance. Of course, any product like this should be refrigerated, and packaged in an opaque bottle. Take according to directions, or 1 T per day. It should be used within one month or less after opening the bottle. They can also be used to make salad dressings.

Instead of supplementing oil directly, the same effects can be had by making one's own nut butter out of raw nuts and seeds. A good way to do this would be to grind 1 cup almonds, 1/4 cup sesame seeds, 1/4 cup or more flax seeds, and 2T unsalted butter together. Add Morton Lite Salt and/or Hain Sea Salt to taste. This can be done in a food processor, adding x-virgin olive oil to make it the right consistency.

The successors of omega 3s and omega 6s, EPA and GLA, may also be take to combat EFA deficiency. Only tiny amounts of these are necessary. Taking a capsule each of EPA (fish oil) capsules along with a capsule of evening primrose oil daily would provide plenty of EFAs. If one buys EPA capsules, be sure it specifies "cholesterol free" to prevent PCB contamination. The best deal I have seen for it is Solaray's MaxPure EPA.

I am also adding copper, from a multivitamin, to my eczema recommendations due to possible skin problems excaberated by deficiency of this mineral. Take 100% RDA daily in a multivitamin, like Twinlabs Daily One (in addition to the Calcium/Magnesium supplementation regimen as specified in my article "Diet and Supplement Tips.")