Similarities Between the Gut Microbiome and Skin Microbiome
Just like the gut there are trillions of bugs that make up the skin microbiome or flora, some, which are even found in the gut and vice versa.
Our skin microbiome has the ability to communicate with our immune system just as the gut does.
What Do They Both Do?
Together the microbiome and immune system protect us against the overgrowth of pathogenic organisms, or infection and suppress or eliminate harmful bacteria.
We see inflammation, for example, in both the gut and the skin. Inflammation itself is a healthy immune response but with dysbiosis or microbial imbalance, potential problems can occur.
Gut bacteria can trigger auto immune responses leading to rheumatoid arthritis, ulcerative colitis, food allergies or intolerances, celiac disease, etc. With the skin, we see auto-immune responses such as psoriasis, eczema, etc.
The only difference between the skin and gut microbiome is the skin having direct contact with its immediate environment. Climate, pH fluctuations from skincare products, etc.
Dysbiosis (microbial imbalance) of the gut and skin will break down the protective barrier of the mucosal lining and can initiate immune responses, whether innate (immediate reactions), or adaptive (long-term memory to reactions).
Probiotics and digestive health aides have been shown to balance and encourage healthy microbiota to flourish, impacting immune responses.
We have the opportunity to influence both the gut and skin microbiomes. Factors include diet, lifestyle, nutrient deficiencies, medications, skincare products, stress, drugs, alcohol, smoking, infections, surgeries, oxidative stress, sleep, trauma, genetics, and age.
And that’s not all… poor gut health or poor upkeep of the gut and skin microbiome leads to poor nutrient absorption. This causes a host of problems in dealing with hormone regulation, energy, allergies, nutrients to keep your skin young, elastic, and flourishing are just a few of them.
10 Ways to Keep Your Gut-Skin Microbiome Flourishing
- Maintain a healthy diet full of vegetables, clean fats, proteins and grains. Consume whole fruits or berries 1-2 servings daily and by themselves. And don’t forget to stay hydrated with REAL water!
- Avoid possible trigger foods such as wheat, dairy, nuts etc.
- Get on a spore based probiotic and also a prebiotic
- Try a food based multi vitamin and mineral.
- Determine if you’re having a hard time digesting and if so, try supplementing with some HCL/full spectrum digestive enzyme. Acid reflux, heartburn, gas, cramping, and bloating are all good indicators you are not digesting well. Think about getting a stool test to see the bigger picture - contact us for testing information.
- Test your pH via saliva and urine on a weekly basis to ensure optimal nutrient absorption. The optimal range researched being between 6.3-6.6 - Holistic Health & Beauty Starter Guide is a great resource to learn more about vitamins, minerals, pH and how to test.
- Do not scrub your body and face to death, literally. That squeaky clean feeling will strip your microbiome, leaving you susceptible to invasion.
- Try washing your face only once a day; the body 2-3 times a week, and in-between splash water on your face (distilled when possible), and pat dry. Never use HOT water. And be careful of the products your using such as soap (very alkaline); The skin’s pH is slightly acidic and needs to maintain this for its microbiome. Always make sure that your cosmetics are good for you (nutrition for the skin), and at the correct pH between 5-7 for toners & moisturizers.
- De-stress; take deep breaths throughout the day, as well as getting a good mix of stretching, cardio, and resistance training at least three times a week.
- Get your beauty sleep! Your body heals and rejuvenates at this time.
Note: BEWARE OF HAND SANITIZERS! Research shows that excess use of antimicrobial hand sanitizers and soaps contributes to skin dysbiosis and antibiotic resistance, causing various skin conditions. Find a plant based sanitizer or use a mild (plant based) soap and water.
None of the statements or products contained herein this article are intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease.