Your Guide to the Gut-Skin Connection

Have you invested more than you care to admit on skin products and/or treatments? Are you questioning their worth? If you’re deep in the process of managing fine lines and wrinkles, uneven skin tone, dull, rough or sagging skin, rosacea and/or adult acne then maybe it’s time you started looking to your gut.

The quick fix offered by antibiotics, treatments and procedures are alluring, however an approach that offers deeper seeded results is the kind I advocate, and it begins in the gut. By taking care of your gut you may just overcome some of the skin concerns that’ve been plaguing you, but more importantly, you’ll be doing every other ageing part of your body a favour.

There are multiple links between gut health and skin. These include:

Ineffective digestion and absorption:

Despite popular belief, we aren’t what we eat, ‘we are what we digest and absorb’. The skin benefits from virtually every nutrient and mineral the diet offers and if not being digested or absorbed, the skin begins to suffer.
Ineffective digestion and absorption could be a result of poor eating behaviours, bacterial imbalance (keep reading for more), low stomach acid (hypochlorhydria), lack of enzyme secretion and of course ‘leaky gut’ (also known as ‘increased intestinal permeability’). The lining of the gut is designed to let nutrients flow and to prevent toxins, undigested foods,
pathogens and bacteria (otherwise about to be excreted via the stool) to be reabsorbed into the blood stream. When the lining of the gut is compromised and when what used to be tight junctions (in the gut lining) become loose junctions (increased intestinal permeability) it causes nutrients to be lost, toxins to be reabsorbed and inflammation to set in.

If you suffer from gas, bloating, food reactivity and/or inconsistent bowel motions it’s a sign ‘leaky gut’ could be the cause of less than ideal skin. Leaky gut can be confirmed via testing and it can absolutely be treated.

Imbalance of bacteria in the gut microbiome (dysbiosis):

Think of the gut microbiome as a beautiful, diverse rainforest. The rainforest has tall growing trees, low lying moss and everything in between including gorgeous, flower producing species that provide sanctuary for bees and leaves for sun protection to animals. Just like the rainforest, we want the bacteria in our gut to be diverse. Diversity offers space for health promoting species that work in our favour by producing short chain fatty acids and even certain vitamins. These by-products tend to act as a defence against an overgrowth of health degrading species and even pathogens.

For many possible reasons, in this day and age, health promoting species get crowded out by less favourable species. It can lead to toxin build up and inflammation which is another cause of digest-ageing. More specifically, it can lead to puffiness around the eyes, dry skin, fine lines wrinkles and even pigmentation.

Dysbiosis can be detected via stool analysis. At The Natural Nutritionist we use a combination of MetaBiome and GI Mapping. Make sure you contact us if you’re interested in either.

Poor elimination:

Ultimately, the final stage of digestion is elimination. Right at the end of the digestive process, within our stool is the cumulation of undigested foods, natural waste/the by-products of cellular function and the toxins we’re exposed to within the day. Ideally these are passed daily, if not multiple times a day. If not going to the bathroom daily it can lead to waste being left in the intestines to ferment (a contributor to dysbiosis), it can place pressure on the gut (a contributor to ‘leaky gut’) and it also leads to toxins being reabsorbed and recirculated.

Are you eliminating properly? And by properly I mean a complete bowel motion, not too soft and not too hard, every day of the week. If not, it could be the cause of loss of elasticity (due to break down of collagen) and adult acne.

Are you resonating with any of the above? Perhaps it is a sign that your gut is influencing your skin and perhaps it’s time to address your skin from the inside out.

Book a complimentary 15-minute consultation if you’re ready to discuss the next steps most appropriate for you and your skin.

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