I hardly ever sweat and my skin is so dry when they say shoe leather well that is me and I am a woman about 60. I have had this most of my life my father was just like this and my 3 brothers. I have a thyroid disease I take Levothyroxin and have for many years. I eat a lot of snow cone type ice the cup I use is 64 oz and I eat this at least 7 to 10 times daily it is a craving for me. I use non perfumed and sometimes patrolium Jelly which is so greasy and does not work well anyway it seems nothing does. I have diabetes, Celiacs disease, diverticulitis, varicose veins in my throat, high blood pressure among a few others. I need to find something that will work.
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Consider seeing your doctor for these issues, and antiperspirant deodorant.
Coconut oil is a wonder solution for dry skin. Rub it in your skin before sleeping for a few nights and see the change. You can even try any parachute product as they all contain coconut oil/milk extracts. As it is summer, I would say go for their parachute summer fresh body lotion. It works well for dry skin without causing any irritation.
You have x linked Ictheosis. Cholesterol applied topically will help per one study. Any body know a cheap source of cholesterol?
In my experience, petroleum jelly is pretty much useless for the purposes of alleviating dry skin. I'm lucky to not have dry skin but people I know who do, suggest coconut oil.
As NGE suggests... anti-inflammatory / autoimmune. I would suggest to start: no sugar (even hidden sugar), no bread, no pasta, no wheat, no grains, no dairy, no eggs, no legumes, limited fruit, no fruit juice.
I've kinda muddled Paleo & some other concepts but I have my reasons. My wife has had problem with improperly diagnosed autoimmune issues for a LONG time culminating in a diagnosis of sarcoidosis. She went the traditional RA / steroid approach for a while....no real improvement.
She switched to a non-traditional MD who recommended the above, WAY before I stumbled onto the slow carb / no refined carbs concepts to address incipient blood sugar issues, which eventually lead me to Paleo.
Anyway.... this VERY restrictive diet calmed her autoimmune issues & allowed her to function again. She's has reintroduced eggs, very limited dairy & limited fruit. Otherwise she is pretty much Paleo overall. It keeps her "flares" at bay and we figure "if it's working & easily doable...don't mess with it". It might not be "Paleo pure" but it works.
She ate a LOT of wild salmon & green leafy veggies, broc, sweet potato & cauliflower but not much else. A lot of dinner for breakfast. Yoga has helped as well. She lost ~30lbs of fat.
I think you find Paleo quite doable & enjoyable.
Rub coconut oil on your skin! THIS WORKS WONDERS! Good luck Ellen!