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Key To A Killer Complexion Starts In The Belly

Want naturally glowing skin? Then look beyond the surface. Experts now believe the key to a killer complexion actually starts in the belly.

Sally Hunwick

Here’s something new: it’s no longer bad manners to talk about what’s going on inside our tummies. Research now confirms that if we pay attention to the health of our gut, we can prevent breakouts, redness, dullness, inflammation and toxic build-up in our skin. Sounds good. But how can we improve gut health, fast? And what exactly is the connection between the gut and our skin? We ask the experts to shed some light on what’s going on inside.

THE SKIN-GUT CONNECTION

Think of it like this: the skin and gut are like job-sharing colleagues. Both have been assigned the big job of getting rid of unwanted nasties. “The gut and the skin are two of the body’s key pathways of elimination,” says naturopath Danielle Steedman. “They work in partnership, so if one is not functioning efficiently, then the other will be burdened.”

The reason that matters? If that burden on the skin gets too much, it could mean anything from redness and rashes, to sensitivities and acne – or it could just translate to skin that’s dull and out-of-sorts. When it’s working properly? Our gut is a little factory that pumps out a host of vital vitamins and nutrients, such as skin-boosting B2, B3 and biotin. It also produces detoxifying B12, folic acid and vitamin K. But if things get a little out of whack, our gut’s first path of resistance is inflammation. If issues like this persist for too long, it can be bad news for your complexion.

“Where there is gut inflammation, there will be skin inflammation,” says Carla Oates, founder of The Beauty Chef, a wellness skin programme built on the foundation that beauty begins in the belly. Inflammation can increase sebum production, which at skin level can equal redness and spots. It can also “accelerate the decline of collagen and elastin,” adds Oates. The upshot of which can be lines, sagging and general skin dullness.

A FINE BALANCE

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May 2019

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