Did you know that stress plays a big role in how your skin looks and feels? (And I'm not just talking about frown lines!)
Put simply, when we are in our stress response (fight/flight) the blood flow is prioritised to our brain and muscles so we can run away or fight and it's redirected AWAY from our digestive and reproductive systems. This impacts our absorption of nutrients that support our skin health and collagen and also can wreak havoc on our hormones.
This reduction in digestive blood flow also slows movement of our intestines (peristalsis) and can lead to constipation which slows waste removal from the body. Our skin is an organ of detoxification so it takes a role in expelling waste products when this happens and can lead to dullness and breakouts.
Our Gut-Skin axis is impacted by this as our gut microbiome is disrupted and therefore the complex messaging that goes on between our gut and skin is impaired and can lead to inflammatory processes manifested as acne, atopic dermatitis and psoriasis.
When we are stressed, our behaviours around food choices are impacted for some of us (ice-cream and cookies anyone?? 😆) and increasing sugary, inflammatory foods are of course going to reflect in our skin.
So what's the solution? We all have plenty of stress in our lives and it's not always possible to just walk away from these. The solution is to change how you respond to these stressors and here's how you can do this:
1. Have YOUR own stress management plan in place so that you can reduce your stress response and be better equipped to deal with what life throws at you. This can look like:
- Deep breathing
- Mindfulness and/or meditation
- Yoga and other exercise like walking, gym, pilates, etc.
- Spending time in nature regularly, like your local park if bush and beach isn't in your local area
- Connecting with a friend/family member so that you feel supported
2. Choose your nutrition well - wholefoods like fresh fruits and veggies, quality proteins, brightly coloured foods, fibre to feed your gut microbiome.
3. Hydrate well and avoid alcohol.
4. Use adaptogens like Ashwagandha KSM66®️ (Withania), Siberian ginseng, Astragalus.
5. Look after your gut health:
- Eat prebiotic foods
- Use bone broth or collagen when needed
- Avoid sugar and packaged foods
- Avoid overeating
- Eat mindfully and chew your food well
Do these resonate with you? DM us on @theglowprotocolau and ask us anything!