[HEALTH & WELLNESS] Is it time for a GUT check?

IMG_5436Is your gut in balance? As we continue to research about the skin and proper skin care, we came across the term “leaky gut syndrome”. We found significant correlations between gut health and various skin and overall health conditions.

What is leaky gut syndrome? It’s when the lining of the intestinal walls are damaged, allowing undigested food and toxins to seep into the bloodstream, and the body begins to attack the foreign entities that invade it. Symptoms of this condition could include inflammation, irritable bowel syndrome (IBS), Celiac disease, food allergies, ulcers, Thyroid conditions, eczema, and other health and skin-related issues. This condition can be brought on by poor diet, medications, stress, and genetic predisposition.

Eating a balanced and healthy diet of mostly colorful fruits and vegetables, drinking sufficient amounts of water to flush toxins from our bodies, and making sure the flora (the microbiome – the community of microorganisms) in our gut is in balance are crucial. Proper gut health is critical in allowing our bodies to digest and absorb the nutrients and minerals necessary to maintain a healthy body and could alleviate some of the ailments that affect it.

So, how can we balance our gut microbiota? Including more probiotic foods into our diet such as miso, apple cider vinegar, fermented foods like sauerkraut and kimchi, Kombucha, and yogurt can help. Reducing and limiting the intake of alcohol, processed foods and sugars are also critical. If your immune system is compromised, it’s best to choose organic produce to limit exposure to harmful chemicals and pesticides.

Repairing the gut can take some time depending on how damaged it may be. Yet, healing and rebalancing the gut is important so that our bodies can remain healthy. Perhaps it’s time for a gut check with your medical practitioner. Your body will thank you for it.

Advertisements

Tips to Spring-Ready Your Skin

Okay. We confess. We looooove soaking in luxuriously hot baths and taking long, steamy hot showers! And, we know many who enjoy doing the same, especially during these cold Winter months.

But, did you know that long, hot showers and baths can dehydrate your skin? And, did you know that antibacterial soaps, alcohol-based moisturizers, consuming alcoholic beverages and certain fabrics can irritate the skin and worsen dry skin conditions?

Now that Spring is around the corner and warmer temps are on their way (we hope!), here are some tips to Spring-ready your skin:

  • Take warm, not hot, showers and baths. Exposing your skin to hot water for long durations can break down your skin’s protective barrier, stripping it of its natural oils that keep the skin moisturized and impurities from penetrating into your body. So, sticking to warm baths and showers can be a skin-healthier option.
  • Use heavier creams, instead of lotions. Creams and oil-based moisturizers can better lock in moisture, keeping skin supple and hydrated. The best time to moisturize is right after you step out of the shower or bath. Pat your skin dry and apply moisturizer when your skin is still slightly moist.
  • Let cotton and satin fabrics be your best friends. Wearing clothing made of cotton and satin are often less irritating to the skin and allows your skin to breathe. And, even while you’re indoors and sleeping, your body continues to lose moisture, so remember to stay covered up when indoors as well.
  • Drink more water. Caffeine and alcoholic beverages can dehydrate the body. When consuming these types of beverages, remember to increase your water intake to replenish your body. Proper hydration helps the skin stay healthy and allows your body to function properly.
  • Green your beauty cabinet. Chemical-laden and harsh cleansers can irritate and further inflame your skin. Stick to cleansers that are fragrance-free and chemical-free, products that are milder and gentler for your body.
  • Exfoliate once a week. Rid dead skin cells that can clog pores and allow skin cells to regenerate. Using gentle exfoliants such as sugar-based exfoliants and products with natural and organic ingredients are often kinder to your body.
If you have persistent or worsening skin conditions, please remember to consult your medical practitioner. So, here’s to wishing Spring is indeed on it’s way :)! ~ Naturally Susan’s