Our skin is a book for the world to read. It tells others of our scars, of our health, and even whether or not we are suffering from something like an eating disorder. In addition, it plays so many critical roles in our everyday lives. It is essential to our very identity. Watching the health of our skin can help us diagnose issues in our physical health. We are, after all, what we eat. Unhealthy diets or eating disorders will impact skin health in the following ways:
Eating disorders affect the body in a multitude of ways. Restrictive disorders, such as anorexia or bulimia, cause the body to starve itself. Part of this starvation is in regard to nutrients and vitamins. Without these essential components, our entire system suffers. It will be felt by the patient, and it will exhibit on their skin.
This relationship is often experienced by both the patient and the public. A study in 2001 discovered that 81% of women who have an eating disorder are also unhappy with the appearance of their skin.
Anorexia is the bigger culprit when it comes to skin conditions, and causes asteatosis, follicular hyperkeratosis, hyperpigmentation, acne flair-ups, facial dermatitis, xerosis, and so much more.
Typically, patients suffering from an eating disorder will experience sallow skin, bruising, and a “haggard” look. Combined with other signs of eating disorders, if you see this in a loved one, you must encourage them to get help from a dedicated center like edentreatment.com.
For many of the same reasons that an eating disorder will impact the health and look of the skin, so too will diet. In this case, it refers more to the foods you eat, rather than the restrictive effect of a lack of nutrients or vitamins.
Studies have shown that foods and diets that are high in carbohydrates make acne a greater risk, even in adults — foods to watch out for include white bread or pasts, crackers, cakes, cookies. The commonality between these foods is where they sit on the glycemic index, which helps highlight how foods that impact blood sugar levels the most are the foods also most responsible for breakouts.
Dairy is also a factor. Low-fat products especially contain higher progesterone hormones which have been linked to flare-ups.
Stress, even healthy, positive stress, can and does have a significant impact on skin health. This is due to the hormonal changes stressful situations cause in the body. When you feel stressed – even for something good, like your wedding day – your body releases neuropeptides, an inflammatory chemical, throughout the body. This chemical, as well as the hormonal changes that come with stress, have been shown to trigger an inflammatory response in the skin.
It’s why you can see skin worsening during a stressful period at work, and why that pimple might show up before a big event, you were looking forward to, like your wedding.
The body is intrinsically linked. Seeing a flare-up or other skin issues, especially if you did not experience them before, means that a change in your body has happened. Diagnosing this change and fixing the source is the best way to promote health inside and out.