Could the food you eat and the products you use and the thoughts you think possibly be the cause of your skin condition? Nicole Sherwin, founder of South African Indie brand Eco Diva Natural thinks so. She shares some solutions to eczema and rosacea.
The first, and in my opinion the most important element to eczema and rosacea relief is gut health. What you put into your body every day:
What you put into your body is reflected on the outside. So when people suffer from skin irritations it is usually because the skins’ pH levels are out of balance and the first and foremost cause is the Gut.
Your body contains trillions of microbes, most of which are beneficial. The most dense microbe population is in your gut, where they play a critical role in digestion, immune function and weight regulation. What you eat can quickly change your microbes, but are you eating the right foods to help your good gut bacteria?
Easy tips for gut health
- Eat a wide range of plant-based foods. A healthy gut has a diverse community of microbes, each of which prefers different foods.
- Eat more fibre. Most people eat less than they should. Fruit, vegetables, pulses, nuts and wholegrains feed healthy bacteria. Try to get organic fruits and veggies if possible.
- Avoid highly processed foods that contain high levels of refined sugar. They often contain ingredients that either suppress ‘good’ bacteria or increase ‘bad’ bacteria.
- Take Probiotic supplements to assist in producing healthy gut bacteria.
- Choose extra-virgin olive oil over other fats when you can. It contains the highest number of microbe-friendly polyphenols.
- Antibiotics kill ‘good’ bacteria as well as ‘bad’. If you need antibiotics, make sure you eat lots of foods that boost your microbes afterwards.
- If your diet is low in fibre, a sudden increase can cause wind and bloating. This is less likely if you make gradual changes and drink extra water.
The second most important element, is skin health – what you put onto your skin every day. Have you actually looked at the array of products that you smear and spread all over your body?
Did you know: The skin is the largest organ of the body and contains a deep intelligence with magical, natural healing properties. If fed with the correct nutrients that are compatible with skin, it will naturally balance it’s pH levels and heal itself perfectly every day.
pH is measured from one upwards, with one being highly acidic and 14 eight being highly alkaline, and a pH of 7 is neutral. A pH between 1 and 6,9 is acidic and between 7,1 and 14 is alkaline.
Your stomach acid has a ph of one or two, which is why indigestion hurts so much – it’s the acid burning your stomach lining.
Your skin is fairly acidic, which helps it ward off the advances of harmful bacteria and fungi. The optimal pH of human skin is 5,5 and you can measure it with a piece of litmus paper.
Your sweat with the sebum on your skin to form something called an acid mantle, which has a pH of 4 to 5.5.
Using astringent soaps, products containing harsh chemicals, preservatives, heavy metals or phthalates removes the acid mantle and can leave the skin vulnerable to fungal or bacterial infections and cause severe skin irritations.
Easy Tips for Skin Health
- Ensure you only use one brand. Mixing brands can cause skin irritations. The skin is similar to the gut. If you drink a cocktail, a tequila, a brandy, a glass of campaign and a beer, we all know too well what happens…your gut will inevitably let you know it needs to get sick. That’s never fun. Most of us have learnt to stick to one kind of alcohol for the evening and ensure plenty of hydration in-between.
- The same applies to skin. Be a ‘tequila & soda’ girl with your skincare. Stick to the clean, nature-focused brands that offer real, lasting results.
- Consciously choose a skincare brand that is in line with your values and ethics
- Ensure the ingredients and formulations are of the highest quality – and watch the almost instant results.