Your skin reveals a secret about your health. It can expose illness and/or health history, even if you tell everyone you’re feeling fine. I’m speaking specifically of your skin’s tone, texture and color.
If you are pale, you may be anemic and deficient in iron. It shows up on your skin even if you’re able to mask the accompanying fatigue with NoDoz or coffee. Pale skin that is also dry may be a clue to your hypothyroidism, which also causes fatigue and hair loss.
Healthy folks have a good supply of blood flow and oxygen throughout their body, so skin appears rosy and pink, as opposed to people with heart disease, high cholesterol or a circulatory disorder. (Not all skin tones are “rosy” as in Native American, African American, etc. See note below).
People with cancer sometimes have grey or blue-tinged skin or lips due to the lack of oxygenated blood.
Asthma requires the use of steroids (i.e., prednisone) which can cause visible bruising; this problem also occurs from aspirin, ginkgo, fish oil and prescription anticoagulants to prevent a stroke or heart attack.
If you are alcohol or nicotine-dependent, you will look older than you should, and have saggy skin because these lifestyle factors attack your collagen and elastin. Drinking and smoking age you both inside and out.
Sun worshippers and smokers often have age spots and an uneven skin tone, which is from the ultraviolet light. But this oxidation isn’t only happening on your skin’s surface, it’s also happening to every single organ of your body, including your brain, heart, blood vessels and reproductive organs.
People who suddenly take on a yellow tone may have liver compromise from a drug they’re taking or from alcohol use. When it’s severe, it’s called jaundice and requires medical attention.
Perhaps you think beauty is only skin deep, but as I’ve shown you, it clearly isn’t. It is a reflection of your body’s general physical health. Radiant, youthful-looking skin, hair and nails is actually an inside job.
Reducing your exposure to free radicals can help you obtain gorgeous skin, but of course you need to make sure that you eat right and drink enough water to nourish your body. You’ll also want to minimize the amount of synthetic chemicals (including prescriptions) that you take.
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There are a handful of supplements that I recommend to help with cell protection, collagen formation and overall good health. Among the best we have are biotin, collagen (but only high quality), silica, hyaluronic acid and/or lipoic acid. As for antioxidant protection, the best include natural forms of these vitamins (versus synthetic, so be careful): vitamins A, C and E. (By the way, dl-alpha tocopherol is synthetic vitamin E.) Astaxanthin is a skin-loving algae. Fruit or herbal-derived options that I like include tart cherries, acai, pomegranate, chlorophyll and other non-goitrogenic greens, and either grape seed extract or resveratrol.
There are many others, but this is a start to get you inspired. You should ask your doctor if these natural remedies are right for you. It may take several months to see results. What you’re going for is a healthy glow to your skin, which, at the end of the day, translates to a healthy body.
8-4-17 Excellent Point and NOTED!
I was surprised at the one ethnic audience it addressed by claiming that healthy skin has a pink glow. That is true, for one ethnicity: Caucasians. For those of other ethnicities that have more melanin, a pink undertone is impossible. Some of my family and dear friends are Native American, African American, Indian and Asian. My melanin-rich family and friends are used to being excluded in many aspects of American life. Please do not exclude them in your writings. You have an important position with a massive following. I respectfully ask that you be on the just, fair and loving side of history.
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Suzy Cohen, has been a licensed pharmacist for over 30 years and believes the best approach to chronic illness is a combination of natural medicine and conventional. She founded her own dietary supplement company specializing in custom-formulas, some of which have patents. With a special focus on functional medicine, thyroid health and drug nutrient depletion, Suzy is the author of several related books including Thyroid Healthy, Drug Muggers, Diabetes Without Drugs, and a nationally syndicated column.