What stress does to your skin
Most of us are under some kind of stress in our day to day lives. If the stress is ongoing, our skin will take the brunt of the burden. Skin issues that can arise range from dryness and oiliness to breakouts of eczema and over the long term, deep etched lines and wrinkles!
The main hormone associated with stress (cortisol) can increase oil production, leading to oily skin and acne breakouts. Another area that stress affects significantly is our digestion! When the body is under stress, digestion can literally shut down, depriving your skin of essential nutrients.
Stress can interrupt sleep patterns, a crucial time for skin and cell rejuvenation. Cortisol causes skin dryness by diminishing the skin’s ability to retain water, so your skin can become dull and dehydrated when under constant stress. This lack of moisture can exacerbate skin conditions such as eczema and psoriasis. Chronic high levels of cortisol will accelerate the aging process, while making existing fine lines and wrinkles more prominent.
Managing stress levels with healthy eating, mindfulness and other holistic therapies will help restore health which will be evident in a healthy and glowing complexion.
- Regular exercise is one of the best ways to promote relaxation, balance hormones, sleep better as well as increasing circulation and delivering nutrients to the skin.
- Meditation and mindfulness techniques can help train the brain and body to turn off the stress response and promote more relaxation. Use an app such as Insight Timer Meditation App’.
- High cortisol levels make it hard to rest, but getting enough sleep helps control cortisol production. A sleep hygiene routine will help. Find our tips here The Beauty Benefits of Sleep
- Essential oils such as lavender have been shown to reduce stress, improve mood and reduce inflammation. Use in an oil burner or combine with a carrier oil to massage into trigger points.
- Try to stay away from too much coffee and alcohol when feeling stressed. Focus on eating fresh wholefoods, lean protein and getting plenty of healthy fats like avocado while avoiding processed foods and refined sugars. When digestion is below par go for smoothies and soups as a way of getting the nutrients in.
Yours in natural health,
Always consult your healthcare professional before commencing a new dietary or exercise regime, before using any supplements and before making any changes to prescribed medications.