A naturopath’s advice for glowing skin

To achieve optimum skin health, we need to look a little deeper than the skin and view our health as a whole, rather than separate organs or systems. As a naturopath, I often look at the skin as a reflection of the gut and once we offer the gut the support it needs, the health of the skin also improves.

An imbalance in the microbiome of the gut, (commonly known as gut flora,) poor digestion and malabsorption, can all affect the way your body is able to process, absorb and utilise nutrients from the foods we ingest. When digestive function is compromised, the flow on effects can be extensive and can affect the nervous system, including mood, brain function and skin health.

If we are going to put the time and effort into ensuring we have a healthy, wholesome and nutritious diet, then it makes sense to ensure we have optimum digestive function and healthy gut microbiome, to enable optimum utilisation of nutrients.

The aim is to think of your gut as the core or centre of your wellbeing and understand that our diet and lifestyle influence our gut health and in turn, our gut health affects many aspects of our general wellbeing.

I often look at food as an opportunity to either heal or harm our body. What we choose to eat will affect our health, so we need to remain aware of the effect the food will have on our body and make decisions based on what we want to work on most.

Supplementing with a probiotic can offer the body access to select strains of probiotics, but we need to look to food to ensure diversity of strains and optimum gut health.

Fibre is key to supporting healthy gut flora and can be found in fresh fruits and vegetables, legumes, oats, nuts and seeds.

Focussing on bringing in a range of fermented foods, such as miso, kimchi, natural yogurt (sugar free,) kombucha, tempeh and sauerkraut, will also help support healthy gut flora. We also need to focus on limiting sugars, refined flours, alcohol and high stress, which all have a negative effect on gut health.

We have access to an amazing range of fresh fruits and vegetables in Australia and we need to ensure we bring a variety of these foods into our diet to support our gut health, and in turn our mood, our immune system and our skin health.

We can also look to herbs and foods to support natural clearance of toxins from the body, to support healthy, clear skin. Cruciferous vegetables such as kale, broccoli and cabbage contain powerful compounds called glucosinolates, which help with detoxification. By ensuring we bring more of these foods into our diet, we can support detoxification through our foods.

Exercising, staying hydrated and getting enough sleep will also contribute to clearer and more vibrant skin. The process of sweating also allows the toxins to be filtered from the skin. Drinking enough fresh water each day is essential to ensure your body can detoxify impurities from the body.

Essential fatty acids like those found in fish, nuts, seeds and avocados are also important in helping you achieve plump, healthy skin.

We have also created a really beautiful organic, herbal tea, which has been designed to help support healthy and clear skin. Our Skin Glow tea contains herbs such as calendula, red clover and burdock root. Our naturopath has carefully selected this combination of botanicals, as they have traditionally been used to help reduce inflammation, support the clearing of toxins and filter impurities from the skin and blood. You can read more about this incredible tea here.