Leaky gut and acne – is there a link?
We talk about all different types of topics here, including poo and your acne – so its no wonder that we’re here, discussing “leaky gut”.
What IS leaky gut, you might be wondering, and could it potentially be contributing to your breakouts?
Leaky gut happens when the lining of your stomach becomes irritated by food; usually when you have an allergy and/or you’re eating items that are very acidic and/or difficult to digest.
Tiny microtears are made in the lining of your stomach, allowing nutrients – and bacateria, etc. – to escape and enter your blood stream, causing widespread inflammation – and overall, problems.
Let’s go back a bit in history, ruhl-quick-like-a-bunny:
In 1947, dermatologists Donald M. Pillsbury and John H. Stokes were the first ones to establish a relation between gut balance and healthy skin. They claimed to have found a solid connection between emotional stress, physical appearance and the microorganisms residing in the gut.
Over the past few decades, to take this even further, the gut has even been labelled as ‘the second brain’ because of the deep impact it’s functions have on the rest of our body.
So, the gut is linked to the brain…..and ultimately, since the brain is intricately linked to our skin (the brain tells all of our hormones to function, which tells our skin how to function/look as well….), we have a gut-brain-skin axis. What does that mean though, exactly?
What IS the link between leaky gut and your skin?
- Excessive and chronic use of antibiotics can wipe out the good bacteria along with the bad ones from your gut. This gives the bad ones lesser competition for survival, thus, leading to overpopulation of bad bacteria and a serious candida problem. So, avoid using oral antibiotics for acne treatment. We talked about this recently, here.
- As I mentioned earlier, physical, emotional or mental stress can be a major factor in causing a “gut disaster” as well. Psychological stress disrupts the gut flora, lowering our inherent immunity and allowing toxins and bacteria to start negatively impacting our stomach lining. Have you tried meditation?
- Over consumption of alcohol can have an adverse effect not just on your gut, but all other systems in your body as well. As far as the digestive tract is concerned, alcohol irritates your stomach and intestines, inhibiting the functioning of hormones that protect our gut against inflammation and eventual leaking.
- Gluten. Gluten. Gluten. If you think you have a problem, start reading this gluten and acne post right now. Gluten has a high content of amylose sugars and anti-nutrient agents like lectins. While the former are responsible for creating inflammation, the latter gets attached to the intestine and suppresses the nutrient functions in your body. This causes numerous issues in the gut.
How can you fix your belly aka leaky gut to support natural acne healing?
- Manage your stress.
- Ditch the antibiotics that you don’t think are absolutely necessary for you. You can also consult your doctor for an antibiotic that has a minimal effect on the probiotic bacteria.
- Limit your alcohol consumption to once a week.
Try adding these foods in to support a healthier “gut” (I kinda love this word haha!):
- Kefir: This fermented dairy drink is brimming with probiotics, give ‘er a whirl and see how it feels.
- Coconut oil: The fats in coconut oil help address the gut problems and its antimicrobial properties are A+ for the skin.
- Fermented cod liver oil: Another of those ancient foods, this oil is super rich in nutrients and a potent source of vitamin A, D and omega fats.
- Fermented veggies: veggies like sauerkraut supplement the body with microbiomes that have a ton of probiotics and support belly-healing.