There has been an over-abundance of skincare products in the last few years. Or so it seems. Everybody seems to be troubled by “bad skin,” if there was such a thing. Acne (sometimes pretty painful), excessively oily skin, dry skin, dull skin, wrinkled skin, redness, rosacea, eczema, psoriasis, and any number of abnormalities seem to be striking us with a frequency greater than ever before. So we take refuge in over-the-counter solutions that we feel will solve our problems. After all, they seem to be working fine for those gorgeously skinned models that endorse these brands. But it is a mirage, we find sadly and wonder what went wrong with our skin. What if you were told that the secret to healthy and radiant skin lies inside of you, in your gut? Would you believe that there is a gut skin connection?
Your skin is the largest organ in your body. And its health is intricately connected to what’s happening within your gut. When we say, gut, it means your entire digestive tract – from the mouth down to your anus. The function of the digestive system is, understand this, to absorb nutrients from the food that we eat. These absorbed nutrients are then sent all over the body to be used for various life processes. Now, we can be healthy only if every organ of our body receives enough nutrients for maintenance and functioning. Among these organs is your skin. So if you aren’t getting enough nutrients from the food that you eat, your digestion is at fault. And it also means that your skin, as a result, will not be in the pink of health.
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There have been a lot of studies to prove the direct relationship between the gut and skin and how gut health affects skin. For instance, a recent study indicates that people with acne rosacea have a 10 times greater prevalence of SIBO (small intestinal bacterial overgrowth), a condition where parts of small intestine show abnormally high growth of certain types of bacteria. Treating SIBO led to the resolution of the skin problems in these people .
Another study showed that 14% of people with ulcerative colitis and 24% with Crohn’s disease have skin problems. People suffering from celiac problems also suffer from skin manifestations such as dermatitis herpetiformis. The frequency of this gut and skin connection is 25%. Celiac sufferers also have an increased frequency of oral lesions, vitiligo, and alopecia . In yet another study, researchers found that a treatment for psoriasis can, surprisingly, also show positive results in Crohn’s disease . Your gut microflora also influences fatty acid profiles and in turn, your sebum production. People with seborrheic dermatitis (scaly patches and red skin on the scalp) were shown to have disruptions in their gut microflora.
Still wondering how does gut health affect skin? To get a clearer idea, Your digestive tract is colonized by trillions of good bacteria that help you in many ways – aid digestion, produce certain vital nutrients, and keep your immune system healthy and strong. An imbalance in this gut microflora can lead to your digestive system not functioning efficiently. This leads to skin problems, among other things. Our stressful lifestyles, unhealthy dietary choices, and environmental pollution can create a severe strain on our gut microflora and can easily imbalance it.
To correct this imbalance and maintain the skin gut connection, you require probiotic foods and supplements. Fermented foods like kefir, yogurt, kimchi, and sauerkraut provide good bacteria. High-quality supplements, like Setu’s Your Gut, also provide all of the good bacteria in the right amounts. With a healthy balance of good bacteria in your gut, you can be assured of healthy digestion and absorption of nutrients from a healthy diet. This will lead to healthy organs and also healthy skin.
Don’t go searching for solutions for healthy and radiant skin in creams, lotions, face washes, and face packs. Instead, eat clean, drink a lot of water, and aim to balance your gut microflora to ensure lasting health for your skin and your body.