For the longest time we were taught to put a variety of creams on our skin to soothe specific skin issues or rejuvenate the skin, however we currently spend on the majority of products which contain 80 - 90% of water. As a result, it doesn’t seem to do much on our skin due to lack of education on how skin works with nutrients.
Skin diseases such as Rosacea, Acne, Psoriasis, Sebaceous Hyperplasia or signs of aging, wrinkles, dry skin, and hyperpigmentation are the signs of biochemical dysfunction. This is generally caused by nutritional deficiency. In order to combat this, we need to focus on the internal healing process with supplemental nutrients as well as the application of topical nutrients.
Addressing the cause of skin issues as an internal crisis is usually the last thing that we think of. Most of those who have nutritional deficiencies are often associated with digestive issues. Nutritional deficiencies caused by digestive issues, which is known for Leaky Gut (1, 2) can force our bodies to compartmentalize the available nutrients and divert them to the more vital organs and systems like the, such as heart, liver, and lungs thus starving skin.
When it comes symptoms related to digestive issues, the typical signs of constipation or diarrhoea may not surface. Instead, they may manifest in the form of allergic reactions, skin disease, weight issues or signs of accelerated aging.
Nutrients for Internal Healing
1. Patch the gut with nutrients such as probiotics, DGL, collagen, bone broth, apple cider vinegar, homemade fermented foods, long chain fats such as flaxseed oil or fish oil (along with chewing your food as it's an important part of pre-digesting the food, however if you have hard time to produce saliva or enzyme α-amylase and other enzymes, you might consider taking digestive enzyme to help breaking macronutrients into smaller molecules).
2. Prebiotic are good paired with probiotics and help bowel movements, you need a good variety of prebiotic to feed different gut bacteria in order to get the waste out of your body, however if you have SIBO, it’s a good idea to take a break from Prebiotic as they feed bad gut bacteria as well.
3. Supplementing with the right form and dosage of vitamins, minerals, essential fatty acids (EFAs) , and herbs.
EFAs are vital for nutritional absorption as a good part of vitamins are oil soluble, EFAs are what help deliver nutrition into your body. When you get older, you’ll start having Fat Malabsorption which cause loss of nutrients.
4. Consume healthy fats, fresh veggie, fruits. For meat intake, prefer grass fed, non antibiotics, and non hormone treated. Reduce processed foods, laxatives, eliminating dairy and grain products completely. Especially watch out for sugar and high sodium intake. Follow low GI diets, Keto, Keto-tarian, or similar that fit your specific needs.
5. Stay hydrated by drinking filtered water along with taking vitamin C will definitely help flush out toxins and support collagen production.
6. Eliminate Toxins. One of the biggest reasons to have skin issues is consuming food, water, or daily products which contain copper, heavy metals, and pathogens. These substances not only damaging our livers, but also go over other organs through bloodstream.
The go-to for a lot of health issues, especially to do with the skin, is to blame genetics. In reality, more than 80% of skin occurring issues are visibly affected by environmental stressors such as lifestyle, weather changes, and pollutants.
Topical application, also known as transdermal delivery, is a route for active ingredients to be delivered across the skin. It requires maximizing absorption formulation and strategies by choosing the right chemical structure, measurements, and formulating techniques to support and ensure the active ingredients are delivered to the outer affected layers as well as the bloodstream for additional internal distribution.
By applying the appropriate nutrients topically, it is a way of guaranteeing rendering of key nutrients to the skin as you can bypass some of the digestive problems related to oral consumption. You can also use this method to create similar, if not the same, metabolic changes that would occur internally. The skin can actually access these nutrients in a way that it would ordinarily access them as though you were getting enough nutrients internally.
Because the skin is receptive to topical nutrients, with the use of the correct kind of nutrients, the skin will love and respond to them quickly, sucking up the key nutrients just like a dry sponge sucks up water when it’s in the deficient state. You will see the changes in complexion, in addition to vibrancy, healthy glow, softness, and smoothness to the skin. In the long run, having the appropriate amount of nutrients will help prevent the breakdown of connective tissue and the formation of wrinkles, while encouraging building block production such as collagen and cell renewal .
Active Ingredients / Key Nutrients For Topical Healing
Active Ingredients :
1. Vitamin A (Retinoids or Bakuchiol which is a natural alternative)
factors that send the signals to help cell growth
(Discover our Retinoids VS Beta-Carotene cheat sheet here)
2. Vitamin C
a rate limiting step in making collagen. It acts as a switch to turn on the collagen production, in order to build connective tissues.
(Discover Vitamin C cheat sheet here)
3. Phycojuvenine G
Rich in polysaccharides and alginates, polyphenols, minerals, and provides an energy reserve for our cells.
4. Essential Fatty Acids
Such as Squalane, Omega 3, 6, 7 , which help regulate oil production and provide antimicrobial action. Since Omega 7 is palmitoleic acid, it helps to deliver active ingredients such as Vitamin A and C through the skin to stem cells.
Other Key Nutrients :
- Vitamin K (5 - 10% oil soluble vitamin k)
is a circulatory vitamin that helps cell growth as it helps calcium metabolism ( and calcium plays a role in supporting of growth. It speeds up the healing process by reducing bruising, ideal to apply on bruises under the eyes, pre and post surgery on surgical cuts.
- B3 (Niacinamide 2 - 3% concentrate)
is a non-flush version of Niacin. Vitamin B3 deficiency is called Pellagra which causes rashes, so infuse Niacinamide could help reduce pellagra symptoms and acne (also have some anti wrinkles and moisturizing properties)
- B5 (Pantothenic Acid, its derivatives are known as Pentothal)
is a fat metabolizing vitamin, which is involved in the production and processing of fats as well as being used to dry up sebum secretion.
- Peptides (tetrapeptdes, pentapeptides, dipeptides)
act as signaling molecules. They improve just about any chemical reaction you want to catalyze on your skin including the regrowth of tissue, detoxing, and stimulation of collagen production.
- Vitamin E and Ferulic Acid
team up with Vitamin C as a powerful trio to fight against UV damage.
- Alpha Hydroxy Acid (Mandelic Acid, Lactic Acid, Glycolic Acid)
This family is used to smooth and soften skin by removing dead skin cells, while improving skin tone and growth stimulation of connective fibers.
Prescription Or Over-The-Counter Meds
Medication alone is generally used as a symptomatic treatment, not always focused on the root of the issue. The intent is to deliver immediate, temporary relief of discomfort. Though we are not opposed to this, unfortunately, these may have harmful or unfavorable long term results.
For example, most of the dermatologists or doctors prescribe antibiotic or steroid-based oral and topical medication for acne, rosacea, or other skin diseases. Although antibiotics are some of the most powerful anti-inflammatories, they have the potential to wreak havoc on the natural gut biome. After a long period of use, the original dose will no longer be useful, encouraging an ever increasing dosage further harming the microbiome. It is also believed that all the antibiotics used in animal feed these days find their way into the consumer’s gut where the beneficial bacteria convert Vitamin K into its active form. This introduction could then disrupt the conversion. When Vitamin K conversion is corrupted enough, its partner Vitamin D3 - the sunshine vitamin - won’t be distributed to the dependent systems, cascading additional issues throughout the body.
It’s also worth noting, the majority of topical medicines are packed with preservatives that can harm the nervous systems after extensive use.
As an example, here’s one of the creams that a dermatologist prescribed to me for controlling redness and blemishes resulting from rosacea:
Ivermectin 1% cream is a non-antibiotic ointment, useful for mild to moderate rosacea. It was founded back in the 70s, used to treat multiple diseases and later was used to treat rosacea. It keeps rosacea flare ups at bay, however it carries with additional preservatives (as seen in the photo) and Ivermectin is believed to be linked with neurotoxicity indirectly. So in other words, it patches the wound but could lead to another problem.
Finding the root cause while feeding the body and skin with the appropriate nutrients in order to help it heal is the optimal journey we all should undertake.
Research & Resource :
1. Harvard Health Journal
2.Leaky Gut As a Danger Signal for Autoimmune Diseases
3.The Pathophysiology of Malabsorption
4.Ivermectin, ‘Wonder drug’ from Japan: the human use perspective