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A natural approach to healthy and glowing skin

Many systems in the body contribute to skin radiance and a healthy glow. Whether you want to simply enhance the beautiful skin you already have, or if you are wanting to heal a skin condition, these tips are for you!

 Support your gut health

My first tip is to support your gut health, which includes your gut lining, function, and microbiome. If you have skin issues, chances are you may have some underlying gut issues. The gut and skin harbour thousands of bacteria (known as the microbiome) that play crucial roles in regulating various processes within the skin, such as maintaining the skin’s barrier, preventing an overgrowth of harmful bacteria, minimising water loss, and reducing inflammation.

It’s important to note that in order to have a balanced microbiome, we need to support the environment it lives in. Having good digestive function allows for a healthy environment for our gut microbiome to thrive. Factors such as stress, poor diet, impact our gut health and can damage the gut lining and bacteria.

Your symptoms give a good indication on what may be causing your acne. For example if you often experience diarrhoea you may not be absorbing these nutrients required for skin health and integrity. If you experience constipation then the hormones that are normally eliminated from the body via our stool are recycled into the body and worsening symptoms of your skin issues.

Food for the skin

My second tip is to nourish your body through food and use food as medicine. Below are some general diet recommendations to support skin health. It is important to note that there is no one that suits everyone.

  • Eat a nourishing diet that incorporates a wide range of macro and micro nutrients. Having a diverse diet not only helps our gut microbiome thrive, but it also provides essential nutrients needed for skin. We need certain nutrients for skin health, such as zinc, vitamin C, E, and A, biotin, and healthy fats. These nutrients help regulate oil production, support wound healing and collagen production, reduce inflammation and damage, and moisturise the skin.

  • Reduce your intake of inflammatory foods. When it comes to skin issues, it is best to avoid known triggers such as dairy, gluten, refined sugars/carbohydrates, processed foods, cheap oils, as well as alcohol. It is especially important to avoid these foods during the healing phases of skin conditions.

  • Hydrate your body through drinking at least two litres of water per day to support detoxification. Water helps to keep your skin cells plump and moisturised. It also enhances skin elasticity, supports skin barrier function, and improves skin tone and texture.

 Encourage detoxification

Detoxification is a natural process where the body eliminates harmful substances, relying significantly on the liver. The liver plays a crucial role in facilitating blood circulation, ensuring adequate nourishment for muscles, skin, and joints, as well as promoting smooth blood flow. When the body accumulates toxins, it stresses the liver as it works to detoxify and eliminate these substances. This can hinder liver function and elevate inflammation levels in the body, potentially worsening existing skin conditions or causing new ones. A healthy liver, on the other hand, contributes to vibrant skin, a radiant complexion, and reduced pigmentation.

Below are some general recommendations to support detoxification:

  • Drink two litres of filtered water every day

  • Move your body daily

  • Have a bowel movement daily

  • Reduce your toxic load (mainly environmental chemicals such as makeup, skincare, cleaning products)

  • Nourish your body with a balanced and diverse diet

  • Drink herbal teas that support liver function such as dandelion root, milk thistle, and schisandra

  • Eat foods that support liver function such as cruciferous vegetables while reducing alcohol, caffeine, and sugar

 Support your nervous system

There is a major link between stress and skin conditions. Chronic stress has shown to disrupt gut health, hormonal balance, immune function, and increase inflammation in the body, all of which directly affect skin health and appearance.

Understanding this, it becomes clear that adopting practices that shift the nervous system from ‘fight or flight’ mode to ‘rest and digest’ mode can significantly enhance mental, emotional, and physical well-being. We cannot simply avoid all of the stressors in life, however we can take control of the simple daily choices that we can make to nurture ourselves through promoting self-care and resilience. This empowers us to respond to external pressures with greater composure and balance.

So remember to:

  • take the time to rest

  • look internally to understand your needs

  • allow yourself to hold space

  • find consistency and connection, and

  • incorporate daily practices that nurture and restore your nervous system

 Consider your hormones

A potential cause for skin issues could be an imbalance in your sex hormones. Common hormonal imbalances that impact skin health include period issues (such as irregular, missing, heavy, painful periods), PMS, spotting, infertility, and conditions such as PCOS, endometriosis, hypothyroidism, and hyperthyroidism.

Hormonal health is an intricate web with many factors at play and there is no one size fits all approach with treatment. If you are experiencing disharmonies in this area it is always best to seek the guidance of a Naturopath.

 It can be really challenging to determine the root cause of your skin issues. If you are wanting to correct any imbalances in the body and are unsure where to begin, I am here to help! You can either book in for a discovery call to discuss your health goals and see if I am the right practitioner for you, or you can book an initial consultation at www.dcnmc.com.au

 Written By Catie Haddrick- Naturopath