The skin struggle is real: Eczema, psoriasis, acne, rashes, and more can make you feel like you need to hide your skin. Trust us—we’ve experienced it, and we know how tricky resolving those issues can be. But are you sick of a revolving door of dermatologist appointments, steroid creams, and temporary solutions? Then you’ve come to the right place.
At Minneapolis Integrative Medicine, we treat the skin from the inside out. Why? Because we know the root of some skin issues isn’t merely topical. It can be a symptom of something being off in your gut.
How Gut Imbalances Impact Your Skin
The gut microbiome influences the development of skin-related conditions, such as acne, eczema, and psoriasis, through interactions between intestinal microbes and various cellular pathways. When it comes to skin conditions, microbes in our digestive tract create what are called metabolites that appear to specifically influence skin cell growth and inflammation.
Under normal circumstances, the communication between metabolites and these various cellular pathways promotes optimal skin health. However, when the gut is out of whack (say, you have something unwanted growing in there), these metabolites promote inflammation, activate your immune system, and can also cause the cells of your intestines to become leaky or permeable (hello, skin issues).
Candida, Yeast, and Your Skin
Candida is a type of yeast that’s naturally found in the gut. But, with our excess exposure to antibiotics, the amount of sugar in our diets, our high stress levels, it can overgrow and cause whats known as intestinal candidiasis. There’s even a specific strain of candida, called Candida krusei, that has been linked to eczema. Other strains may result in acne, IBS, seborrheic dermatitis, psoriasis, and other skin issues.
It all ties back to inflammation, and your body’s response to a perceived threat. Your immune system can get stressed, and head into overdrive, trying to push out the imbalances and overgrowth. Your skin acts as a detox organ—and the result is redness and flaking skin as the toxins get pushed out.
What You Can Do About Your Skin Issues
Many times, your best bet to treat skin issues is to begin from the inside out. Here are a few tips that can help you begin to see the connection between yeast and candida, and your eczema, psoriasis, and blemishes.
1. Manage Your Stress: Stress can play a huge part in gut imbalance. When we’re stressed, our bodies can get more frequently placed into fight-or-flight mode—triggering cortisol and adrenaline, and activating our sympathetic nervous system. That response can also trigger inflammation, if we’re repeatedly in that heightened state. Try counteracting stress on a daily basis to mitigate possible gut issues.
2. Get Your Labs Checked: Many dermatologists and conventional doctors see eczema and psoriasis as a problem with the function of the skin. But, because it can be rooted in more than just candida and yeast overgrowth, getting a full lab workup is a great next step to see what’s going on in your body. Don’t forget the microbiome test!
3. Pay Attention to Your Sugar Intake: Sugar can unnecessarily feed other species of yeast including candida, and doing a quick inventory of how much sugar you eat regularly can help give you an idea of what might be contributing to your skin issues. Not only looking at cane sugar here, but foods that break down easily into sugars like refined grains, high-glycemic fruits, and sugar hidden in our favorite condiments. Dietary changes to reduce inflammation are a great next step, but we recommend chatting with your doctor before trying any new meal plan.
The verdict? Skin issues don’t have to be recurring. By treating from the inside out, and getting to the root of the imbalance, you can help reduce your eczema, psoriasis, ance and more!
Want to learn more about digestion and skin health? Schedule a complimentary, 15-minute consultation to explore how your digestion may be impacting your skin.
Dr. Cassie Wilder is a registered Naturopathic Medical Doctor (NMD) and founder of MIMC. Her passion is empowering her patients through education, understanding, and support through their healing journey. After graduating from Iowa State University with a Bachelors of Science in Kinesiology and Health, Dr. Wilder earned her Doctorate of Naturopathic Medicine from Southwest College of Naturopathic Medicine & Health Sciences, a fully accredited and nationally recognized institution in Phoenix, AZ. During her clinical training, she received extensive hands-on training with many leading experts in the field of functional medicine and developed a passion for treating hormonal imbalances, thyroid disorders, cardiovascular concerns, and adrenal fatigue.