Creams. Serums. Masks. We do all the things to keep our skin looking young and fresh on the outside. In fact, the anti-aging market is worth 58.5 billion dollars! As huge as that number is, we’re probably not surprised by it. Showing our largest organ some love is the first thing we do to keep fine lines and wrinkles away. But what if the real answer to our skin woes goes a little deeper than that? I won’t keep you in suspense… it does. Don’t worry! I’m going to explain how to reduce the signs of aging and improve your skin from the inside out.
Find more information about treatments for youthful skin here.
Your Gut and Your Skin
The first thing to understand is that the gut-skin connection is real. Scientists have found strong connections between the microbiome and the skin. It’s called the Gut and Skin Axis. It means that just as your gut and your brain are interconnected, so are your gut and your skin. In fact, according to one study, scientists found that inflammation in the gut manifested as inflammation on the skin too. People with eczema, rosacea, and acne were more likely to have Leaky Gut Syndrome or small intestinal bacterial overgrowth (SIBO).
So, grandma’s old adage that eating too much sugar will give you acne is probably true. (I can hear my Baba telling me this even now!) If you want to have beautiful, glowing, and youthful skin, you need to go back to the root causes. Boost the health of your gut biome by reducing the elements that can lead to inflammation. Then, take your gut health further by increasing the elements that help your good bacteria grow.
Keep in mind that everyone is different. Eliminating dairy for one person may have little effect while eliminating sugar may improve their skin drastically. Also, remember that it can take a while for your body to “clear out” the damaging foods. Most people need to eliminate a specific item from their diet for two weeks before they see changes. So going slowly and eliminating one food at a time will help you determine which food impacts your skin the most.
If you can make these dietary changes, you will reduce the signs of aging and improve your skin within weeks. And the bonus, you’re probably going to feel better too.
Eliminate This to Improve Skin
It’s the saturated fat and casein (the particular protein found in dairy) that can cause inflammation. This is different from being allergic or even intolerant to dairy. Inflammation makes you feel bloated and just “off,” not necessarily sick. You may even notice more mucus production. And again, this can affect people differently. Some cheeses may cause your inflammation to spike but others don’t. For some, like me, it’s the quantity. A little cheese doesn’t bother me, but if I eat the whole charcuterie board (ahem!), then I feel like a truck hit me.
Add These for Youthful Skin
Here’s a little chemistry for you: green tea and matcha teas have a chemical called polyphenol EGCG. This chemical is known to reduce inflammation. And while all tea has it, green tea has the most. If you can’t stomach green tea, you can take EGCG in capsule form. Just know it may have reduced absorption rates.
Antioxidants work by neutralizing free radicals. Free radicals damage cells, which causes inflammation. So eating foods rich in antioxidants will help prevent the damage before it starts. Blueberries, strawberries, and artichokes are some of the foods that have the highest antioxidant levels.
This mighty compound is full of amino acids. It’s the aminos that help reduce inflammation. Collagen also strengthens the lining of your gut. This means when you eat more inflammatory foods, the food stays in your intestines and doesn’t trickle out into your bloodstream, which can make you feel run down. I swear by this one… I’ve been taking collagen for about a year now, and the difference in my skin, hair, and nails is astounding.
When you have an inflamed gut, it makes it more difficult for your body to absorb key nutrients. Coconut water helps by giving you a high concentration of magnesium and potassium, and some other vitamins. It’s also been shown to reduce acidity levels, which can help lower inflammation too.
Fiber can help you reduce inflammation in two ways. First, increasing your fiber intake can help you lose weight. If you’re overweight, you can be more prone to inflammation. Second, fiber is the favorite food of the good bacteria in your body. When you eat fiber, instead of sugar, you’re boosting the good bacteria levels in your system.
When you take a high-quality probiotic supplement, you are putting more of the “good bugs” into your body. Building up the good bacteria in your body squeezes out the bad bacteria that cause inflammation. To choose the right probiotic, make sure you have a variety of strands and a high level of CFUs.
Sulfur is naturally antibiotic, so it’s also naturally anti-inflammatory. When you increase your sulfur intake, you are making your body less hospitable to the bacteria that thrive on sugar and cause inflammation. While there are sulfur compound supplements, you shouldn’t use them without consulting your doctor. Instead, look for foods that contain sulfur naturally. Eggs, turkey, nuts, whole grains, and leafy veggies are all good sources.
Have you tried improving your skin from the inside out? What did you do? How is it going? I would love to hear your results! Let me know in the comments below.
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