Acne on forehead and cheeks? It could be a sign of poor gut health

Skin and gut health happen to share a close bond. That's exactly why skin problems like acne can be signs of poor gut health.
Cold pressed oil can help keep acne at bay! Image courtesy: Adobe Stock
Natalia Ningthoujam Updated: 17 Oct 2023, 18:47 pm IST

It’s a known fact that what we eat, shows on our face. Turns out, there’s a strong link between skin problems and gut health. Acne is considered to be a normal part of puberty, but it can also mean a sign of poor gut health. There are more ways that your skin tries to show that you need to take care of your gut. Want to know how? Read on to know what an expert has to say about skin problems and gut health.

HealthShots reached out to Dr Harshad Joshi, gastroenterologist, Apollo Spectra, Mumbai, to explore the connection between skin issues and gut health.

He explains that the poor condition of the gut microbiome causes collateral damage to the skin’s protective anti-microbial barrier. This can raise the chances of skin issues. Anything irritating the lining of the gut, will inflame it. So, be it allergens, alcohol, medications, food additives, artificial colouring or diets low in fiber and high in sugar, they can irritate the lining of the gut. When that happens, the body also gets inflamed. This in turn, aggravates skin inflammation.

Gut health and skin problems have a connection. Image courtesy: Adobe Stock

Skin problems that show poor gut health

1. Eczema

Unbalanced microbiome in the gut can lead to a wide range of skin problems. It can lead to sensitive skin and ultimately issues such as eczema, which is a condition that causes your skin to become dry and itchy.

2. Acne

It can be commonly seen on the forehead and cheeks when there is something wrong with the gut. A parasite, gut dysbiosis, leaky gut, candida overgrowth, bacterial infection, gastroesophageal reflux disease or even low stomach acid can invite acne (ways to teat acne).

3. Rosacea

It is induced owing to poor gut health, says Dr Joshi. You will have larger pores on the face and dry skin. It is related to inflammatory bowel disease, celiac disease, irritable bowel syndrome, and gastroesophageal reflux disease.

4. Psoriasis

It is a condition in which skin cells build up and then form itchy and dry patches. Psoriasis can be linked to stress, but it is also tied to gut imbalance. There’s a connection between psoriasis and inflammatory bowel disease. So, you will have symptoms such as rashes or patches of red and inflamed skin.

Fix your gut health problems! Image courtesy: Shutterstock

Tips to improve gut health

A poor gut can cause problems such as bloating, gas, diarrhoea, nausea, abdominal pain, acidity, constipation and weight gain or weight loss. So, improve your gut health by doing the following:

  • Stress can be problematic for the gut, so try to relax by doing yoga and meditation.
  • Exercising on a daily basis can also help to enhance gut health.
  • Try to opt for probiotics and fermented foods that lower inflammation of the gut.
  • Stay hydrated by drinking enough water to help support gut health.
  • Avoid excess consumption of sugar.
  • Eat fibre-rich vegetables and fruits, sprouts, whole grains, and legumes.
  • Cut down on smoking, alcohol, junk, and processed food that can disturb the balance of the gut.
  • Stay away from foods that contain colouring agents, artificial flavours and sweeteners.

Natalia Ningthoujam

Natalia Ningthoujam has written on various subjects - from music to films and fashion to lifestyle - as a journalist in her career that started in 2010. After getting stories from the crime scene, police headquarters, and conducting interviews with celebrities, she is now writing on health and wellness which has become her focus area. ...Read More

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