What we eat, and what state our gut and digestion are in is often evident in our skin’s conditions. Lack of nutrients or vitamins or a bad nutrition rich in fats may, e.g., manifest itself in the shape of skin blemishes. A lack of healthy bacteria in the gut and, as a result, a disturbed gut flora leave marks on our skin. Medical skincare not only works externally, but also through our diet.
“Your skin is what you eat”, writes the dermatologist Yael Adler in her book Haut nah (Your Skin, Up close). And in a piece in the magazine Focus, experts say that the skin “is our gut’s mirror”. Because it is not just a part of our digestive system. “We extract fuel from digestion, as the body is provided with nutrients. In addition, the process helps detoxification and supports our immune system”, they also write. In complex ways, our gut is connected to all other organs.
If the gut’s operation has been disturbed by, e.g., an unbalanced bacterial diversity, harmful microbes or pathogens, this may cause intestinal disorders and, eventually, skin diseases. The gut is no longer able to perform its cleaning function correctly. Too many toxic substances remain in the body while important nutrients are excreted. The organs and the skin, our biggest organ, are insufficiently supplied. If toxins are released through the skin as a result of the gut’s disturbed function, this may entail further irritation and inflammation of the skin.
What, then, is the recipe for a healthy skin and gut? A balanced diet, sufficient fibre, as much fruit and vegetables as possible, regular exercise and sufficient hydration all play a role. In addition, probiotic food such as curdled milk, kefir or natural yogurt, all of which contain large amounts of lactic acid bacteria. Also suitable would be probiotic and microbiotic products which help balance the skin’s healthy microbial diversity.