Healing your skin naturally is possible, and you have to do it from the inside out.
Globally, consumers spent $121 billion – with a ‘B’ – dollars on skin care. When you struggle with painful, uncomfortable and embarrassing skin diseases like dermatitis, Hidradenitis, eczema, psoriasis and many more, it’s easy to understand. In an effort to heal our skin, we spend wads of cash and will try putting anything on our skin that might promise relief.
Sadly, this approach doesn’t work. As a Functional Medicine doctor, I can tell you from personal experience (I happen to have a skin-related disease) and from witnessing the healing journeys of my patients that skin products do not heal skin diseases.
Why is that?
Because the skin diseases we are discussing aren’t truly skin problems. They are actually autoimmune diseases with roots deeper than the skin. That means you need to look for healing in deeper places – like the gut.
In fact, food is the foundation for healing the skin. Nothing else is more important. Use all the skin care products you want. Take all the prescriptions from your dermatologist. Use high-quality supplements from your naturopath or chiropractor. All of these tools can play a role in clearing your skin, but you won’t truly heal for good if you keep eating a bad diet.
Why you should pay attention to your diet
- Researchers have established a “Skin-Gut” connection. The health of your digestive system is directly related to the health of your skin. Inflamed, damaged intestines lead to inflamed, damaged skin.
- Food provides the raw material our cells are built from. If you build a computer from cardboard, it won’t be a very good computer. Build your body out of low-quality foods and you’ll get poor results.
- Many foods are damaging and inflame your whole body, including the skin.
- Many skin outbreaks and chronic issues are autoimmune conditions, and autoimmune conditions are almost always triggered by certain foods.
“Very few dermatologists believe that the food you eat is important for the quality of your skin. This is mad! Bodies are literally made out of the food that goes into them.” – Stefani Ruper
How to really heal your skin
Avoid eating these foods:
- Man-made foods like artificial food coloring, artificial sweeteners, MSG, genetically modified foods (GMOs). Read the labels on your food!
- Sweets, sodas, fast food, or processed foods. If it has a lot of sugar, comes through a drive-up window, or comes out of a bag, box or can, don’t eat it.
- Gluten, dairy, and soy. Like any autoimmune condition, autoimmune skin diseases are triggered by certain foods. Gluten, dairy, and soy are the most common foods people react to.
- Foods that trigger your condition. In addition to the list above, you may have some specific foods that trigger your flare-ups. Work with a Functional Medicine doctor to identify your personal food sensitivities through lab testing or through the Elimination Diet. And then, remove those foods from your diet.
Focus on eating these foods:
- Whole, unprocessed, foods. This means food created by nature and not altered by humans. Meat, vegetables, fruit, and nuts will make up the bulk of your meals. For most people, the Paleo diet provides a good template, but you may need to modify based on your individual circumstances.
- High-quality foods. Choose organic fruits and vegetables whenever you can. Pasture-raised chicken, eggs, and pork are better than organic. Look for grass-fed beef. These will be healthier than the meat and eggs produced by conventional methods.
Stop wasting money on lotions and pills
To heal your skin naturally and for good, changing your diet is the best thing you can do. There is no pill, procedure, lotion, or exercise that can overcome a bad diet. For some, this requires a complete overhaul of their pantries and restaurant choices. For others, it requires minor tweaking. Either way, this one thing is the foundation for healthy skin. Like any habit, it gets easier with time. It is worth the effort you put in.
If you would like individualized help in tackling your skin issues or learning more about what you should be eating, schedule an appointment. I’d love to help.
Photo: Jonathan Kos-Read