Your Skin and How It Keeps You Healthy!
Most people think that beautiful skin is achieved from the outside in, but we are finding more and more that what is going on INSIDE one’s body is just (or even more) important for one’s beauty! All the things that make a person beautiful (skin, hair, nails, etc.) are improved by being healthy.
For those of you who want a summary version of this article: healthy skin is important for overall health. In addition to general healthy living, some of the best things you can do specifically to keep your skin healthy, are to use topical probiotics, take internal probiotics, and avoid toxins. To skip straight to section about the products we recommend for skin, click here: Our Favorite Products for Skin Health
For those of you who want to know more about the fascinating topic of skin and health, read on.
What is a Microbiome?
Micro – Very small
Biome – A community of life that occurs in a certain area.
Microbiome – The community of tiny organisms (such as bacteria, fungi, etc.) and viruses that live on and inside the body as a whole, or an area of the body (such as the gut microbiome). Trillions of these organisms live on and inside every human body. While some can make you sick, the vast majority perform vital functions that keep you healthy.
Different organisms live in different places of the body, and the type and quantity can change over time based on diet, environmental stresses, etc. The wrong dental hygiene routine can negatively affect the microbiome of your mouth and nose. Eating toxic foods can disturb the microbiome of your gut. Breathing poison air can alter the microbiome of your respiratory tract (I bet you didn’t know you had bacteria in your lungs!). Even the laundry detergent and body products you use can damage the microbiome of your skin.
If you would like to read a fascinating (and scary) article about studies of the environmental impact on the human microbiome, read https://www.niehs.nih.gov/health/topics/science/microbiome/index.cfm.
The microbiome performs thousands of critical functions in the body. If any of these microbiomes are altered enough, it can result in disease, trouble sleeping and even mental distress.
The good news is that there are many things you can do to improve your body’s microbiome!
Why Should We Care About Our Skin?
We are not talking about beauty routines to make your skin pretty… prettier skin is just a natural side effect of having healthy skin. The bacteria on the surface of the skin alone perform hundreds (if not thousands) of vital functions.
For instance, the skin is the first barrier against the infectious organisms you encounter on a daily basis! Not only does the skin microbiome protect you from those infectious organisms, it actually “educates” and instructs your immune system (https://www.nih.gov/news-events/nih-research-matters/bacteria-skin-boost-immune-cell-function).
Your skin is also a detox organ. Some researchers estimate that up to 30% of our waste leaves through the skin.
Unlike other parts of the body which can ONLY be improved from the inside (supplements, diet, lifestyle changes, etc.), the skin has the advantage that we can also work on it directly with topical applications. The flip side is that the skin and its microbiome can also be damaged by topical applications.
Things That Damage the Skin’s Microbiome
- Hand sanitizer and antimicrobial soap
- Toxic body products – soap, shampoo, sunscreen, makeup, toner, perfume, lotion
- Chemical clothing detergents, including bleach
- Chemical cleaning products
- Chemicals and pollutants in the air
Alternatives That DON’T Damage the Skin’s Microbiome
- Use a natural, non-toxic glycerine soap
- There are many natural body products on the market, such as https://www.beautycounter.com/ and https://www.rmsbeauty.com/. This is a convenient one-stop-shop for beauty products: https://www.safeandchic.com/
One of our favorite resources for looking up the toxicity of specific ingredients and products is https://www.ewg.org/skindeep/
- Our favorite (and most convenient) non-toxic detergents and household cleaning supplies are from https://trulyfreehome.com/ but there are lots of options available, such as https://www.grove.co/
- We have a whole article about deodorant: mosesnutrition.com/deodorant
- Chemicals and pollutants in the air – Short of moving to the country, there isn’t much you can do about this. Even in the county side, your neighbors use chemical pesticides, there are controlled burns and even wildfires that pollute the air. The best things you can do for indoor air quality is to get vacuums with HEPA filters, and run HEPA filters all the time. We sell Austin Air filters, which are fantastic HEPA filters. As they are expensive, we always discount them for our clients, so let us know if you want more information on that.
There is also an app you can get on your phone called IQAir. It can tell you if the air quality where you are is particularly bad that day. If it is, maybe that day you exercise inside instead of outside, or wear a respirator and a long-sleeve cotton shirt while gardening that day, or reschedule that outdoor project you were going to work on. Just do the best you can.
Just a quick note about “living like a hippie”: This isn’t about politics or climate change. There are many studies that show pollution, chemicals, insecticides, microplastics and other toxins get into our bodies through our skin, the air we breathe, the food we eat, and the water we drink. These toxins cause disease, infertility, and possibly autism. There are lots and lots of studies about this for anyone who cares to look. Each and every one of us can improve our own health and the health of our friends and families be buying non-toxic products, and reducing plastic use as much as possible. Some of these extremely toxic things NEVER biodegrade. When you die (hopefully a LONG time from now), these will still be in your cells.
Our Favorite Products for Skin Health
(Remember to go to our online store (https://store.mosesnutrition.com/) and enter the password “nutrition” before you click on the below links, or they won’t work.)
Derma Colonizer: A fantastic moisturize that heals! If you get nothing else, get this. It’s full a beneficial probiotics for the skin (that also help the gut and immune system). The oils in it have nutrients that help keep the microbiome and tissues healthy. It also has an ingredient called ceramides which help your skin naturally retain moisture, which is key for healthy skin.
Skin Vyrome: Skin Vyrome has special viruses that ONLY infect pathogenic (bad) bacteria on the skin – they can’t infect your cells at all! It also has an ingredient that helps the skin get beneficial ingredients (prebiotics) to the bacteria in the gut. So it works on the outside and the inside!
Skin Byome: This formula contains the most important beneficial organisms needed to support healthy skin. There is a special connection between the organisms (bacteria, fungi, viruses, etc) of the skin and gut that effects the whole body, including the immune system and brain!
Regeneplex: Regeneplex combines key ingredients to support all three layers of skin and enhance skin’s elasticity. Regeneplex actually supports all epithelial tissues, which are the cells that line all internal and external surfaces of your body, including the respiratory, digestive, and reproductive tracts, line hollow organs, and are the major tissue in glands.
Skin-to-Skin Contact is Very Healthy!
Did you know that when a nursing mother makes skin contact with her baby, her body reads the organisms on the baby’s skin? The mother’s body will then produce immune cells which go into the breast milk to bolster the baby’s immune system!
It’s not just babies who benefit from contact. When we make skin-to-skin contact with other people (through hugs or even kissing), small amounts of bacteria, fungi and viruses are passed back and forth. While this may sound like a bad thing, most of those are beneficial! And the ones that aren’t, well, you are actually educating your immune system so it can fight those back organisms. (Just please don’t go hugging and kissing sick people. Too much of a bad organism is enough to make you sick too.)
Most interestingly, when you put probes on people’s brains, and then have them hug, kiss and cuddle, their brain light up and release all kinds of healthy hormones! Humans are made to have contact. So hug and kiss your loved ones every day for a healthier life!