If you suffer from skin blemishes or other pesky skin disorders, the real culprit might be your gut. Imbalanced gut flora has been linked with obesity, allergies, autoimmune disorders, fibromyalgia and particularly skin issues.
It turns out that there is a special relationship that exists between the state of health in your gut and your skin.
Common causes of altered gut flora
Our bodies are particularly sensitive to emotional states like stress, depression, and anxiety. All of these have been shown by research to have a direct link with altered gut flora. Other common causes include poor diet, lack of sleep, medications, and food sensitivities.
Over time, the alterations triggered by these factors may lead to leaky gut and eventually inflammation. For many individuals, inflammation has a direct damaging effect on the skin.
There is a neuropeptide called substance P, produced in the gut, skin, and brain, which has a major role in the condition of the skin. When gut microbiota are altered, it increases the release of substance P in both the skin and the gut. In a Russian study, it was found that 54 percent of patients with acne had significant alterations in their gut flora.
Probiotics can improve skin
In a 1961 research report by physician Robert Siver, it was found that out of 300 patients who were treated with a commercial probiotic, 80 percent had a significant improvement in their acne conditions.
When probiotics are consumed, there is a reduction in systemic markers for oxidative stress and inflammation, which are both associated with acne.
A healthy gut goes a long way
The health benefits from normalizing gut function are visible in so many ways. On his website, popular health expert Dr. Mark Hyman states, “my patients find relief from allergies, acne, arthritis, headaches, autoimmune disease, depression, attention deficit, and more – often after years or decades of suffering.”
As Dr. Hyman explains, there are trillions of bacteria in the gut – all together it has more than 100 times the amount of DNA that you do. This bacterial DNA has direct control over immune system function, regulation of intestinal functions and digestive processes, protection of the body against infection, and production of nutrients and vitamins.
Dr. Hyman also cites a number of studies linking imbalances in gut flora of children to behavioral issues, autism, inflammation problems, obesity, and more.
Healing skin from the inside
If you want to clear up your skin conditions, you may want to start by healing your gut. Here are some steps to help normalize your gut:
· Eat whole foods that are rich in fiber.
· Cut out – or at least strictly limit – your intake of processed, sugar-laden foods.
· Avoid using acid blockers, anti-inflammatory medications, and antibiotics if possible.
· Consider trying probiotics as they have shown high levels of success. Some great probiotic foods include Greek yogurt, kefir, sauerkraut, kimchi, and certain types of pickles.
· Reduce your stress levels. Exercise, meditation, and yoga are some great ways to combat stress.
· Increase your amount of nightly sleep.
-The Alternative Daily