If you are wondering how lifestyle can improve your skin, it’s because while acne occurs on the surface of the skin, the root of the problem is often caused by your body’s internal state. This, in turn, is influenced by your lifestyle choices, habits and mental well-being.
Clear and healthy skin, therefore, should always be treated holistically and not just with a single narrow approach that only addresses one aspect of the problem. Here are 5 lifestyle changes that will improve acne-prone skin: -
Probably the most important area to focus on for better skin. Everything your body digests produces influences your hormonal fluctuation. Some can cause inflammation, influence sebum production that in turn lead to acne. That’s why what we eat is so important for the health our skin.
We will cover diet with more in-depth posts soon but for now here are some general guidelines on foods to eat and avoid for better skin. Everyone responds differently and has their own tolerance levels so test it one food type at a time over a month or so to see how your skin responds.
This takes patience but is the key to finding a diet that is tune with your body and finding which foods are causing or aggravating your acne.
|Processed foods||High in processed oils, sugars, inflammatory additives, artificial colors and man-made trans-fats - need I go on?|
|Dairy||The American Academy of Dermatology believes there may be a link between milk consumption and breakouts – and it could be due to certain hormones in the milk itself.|
|Sugar||Sugar spikes can cause inflammation in your diet. Avoid carbonated drinks and fruit juices and opt eating fruits and dark chocolate so the sugar is absorbed gradually rather in fast spikes.|
|Caffeine||Too much caffeine raises cortisol (aka stress hormone) and which can trigger sebum over-production and inflammation|
|Spicy food||Chilli causes heat and discomfort to your digestive system and excessive chilli can cause ulcers and serious inflammation of the bowels. Your skin is no exception so reduce your chilli intake for a calmer, easier digestion. If you can’t do with spice, try fresh chillies instead of processed chilli-sauces which come with all the processed junk you do not need.|
Ditch the tinned foods, the soda cans, frozen pizza’s and fast-food chains and aim for healthier fresh alternatives. Not only will they taste better, it will be a lot easier for your body to digest.
Fresh food (especially leafy vegetables and fruits) are high in beneficial vitamins and nutrients without all the junk found in processed foods. It’s easier to digest, less likely to negatively impact your body’s natural state.
Bonus: Healthier fresh foods boost your immune system, making you less vulnerable to fatigue, infection and illness – all of which can lead to breakouts.
Exercising benefits your skin by increased blood circulation which sends more oxygen to the skin. This helps eliminate cell waste, oil buildups and blockages in your pores through sweat. Remember to shower after your done so bad bacteria doesn’t build-up on all the skin waste you’ve just cleared
The less you sleep the higher your cortisol levels will be and thus how stressed you feel. Poor sleep also takes its toll on the appearance of your skin with dark circles, puffy eyes and dehydration. Aim for 7-8 hours a night so your cortisol levels are under control and your skin has time to recover.
Elevated stress levels increase glucocorticoid production, that can adversely affect skin structure and function. You can’t eliminate stressful situations in life but you can decide how to respond to them.
So next time you feel ready to burst just BREATHE. In for four seconds, hold for two and out for four. Sounds a bit silly or simplistic but it’s a proven way to help combat spikes in emotion, keep perspective and manage stress.
If you can manage it, some mindfulness and yoga can go a long way – and you can get started for free by following some guided tutorials on YouTube.
Artificial chemicals are absorbed directly by your skin and are filled with plenty of harmful toxins your skin does not need. This influences the skin's natural balance and can lead to reactions such as acne, eczema and irritation.
Makeup and products with comedogenic properties (pore blocking) can also worsen skin as they prevent adequate oxygen diffusion from your pores. While primers and foundation might even skin tone the blockages they cause will accumulate with oil, irritates hair follicles and leading to acne breakouts.
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