Your Gut, Your Skin, Your Immune System Understand the Body

Wellbeing Narrative Leaky Gut Skin Immune System Flora Bacteria Probiotics Illustration Understand BodyDid you know your skin’s appearance reflects the health of your gut and digestive system?  If it’s looking lackluster and you seem to be doing everything right (i.e. eating a vitamin-rich diet, sleeping at least 6-8 hours per night, properly cleansing and moisturizing, drinking plenty of water, and protecting it from sun damage), a leaky gut might be the cause…

Your gut allows for vitamin absorption and healthy intestinal functioning, both of which slow down with age.  Its ability to absorb nutrients depends on the amount of “good bacteria” it contains.  Known as flora, this intestinal bacteria is incredibly important to your body’s ability to function efficiently.   Diet and lifestyle can weaken the gut and deplete millions of healthy bacteria the body needs.

Beneficial intestinal flora and the gut are the MAJOR center of immune support for the body.  (The gut is actually the most important organ for our immune system. Healthy bacteria fights Candida overgrowth that can result from excess alcohol, sugar, stress, or antibiotics.)

What we can do to restore gut health:

First and foremost, eat a diet rich in nutrients and limit sugar, alcohol, and processed foods.  Second, take probiotics to restore flora back to the gut.  Probiotics are great to take in supplement form, especially if you have recently taken antibiotics and require a high concentration of bacteria.

There are many brands of probiotic supplements on the market. Look for a good pharmaceutical grade probiotic that contains about 1.50 billion live CFU’s – colony forming units. I know that amount may sound excessive, but your body naturally, in a healthy state, contains at least this many, and more. -Dr. Jay Brachfield, MD

Other great sources of probiotics for daily gut maintenance include yogurt (even coconut yogurt), kefir, naturally fermented pickles, sauerkraut, miso soup, and Kombucha drinks.

*It is important to note that leaky gut can cause many other symptoms aside from dull, dry skin.  If you experience digestive problems like food allergies/intolerances, bloating, cramps, or gas, you may have a leaky gut in need of repair.  If you suspect this, ask your doctor about taking a Intestinal Permeability test, which provides a clearer picture of your gut’s state.  There are also gut-repair programs, in which you maintain a strictly anti-inflammatory diet, and take probiotics and other supplements to aid in gut repair.  For those with auto-immune problems, always make sure to keep your gut healthy!  Consider doing gut-repair programs on a regular-basis to repair damage and prevent a compromised immune system.

**If your doctor isn’t familiar with leaky gut and its treatment, you may have to look to alternative medicine experts.

Jean-Yves.  “Probiotics create a healthy gut and beautiful skin.” Kora.
McMillen, Matt. “Leaky Gut Syndrome: What is it?” Web MD.
“The truth about probiotics and your gut.”  Web MD.