Post Festivities SOS Skin Rescue
Now that the season to be jolly has long gone and all we are left with is distant memories, come January many of us struggle to put our best face forward.
Even if you’ve managed to swerve copious indulgences of alcohol-fuelled gatherings, family feasts, sweet treats, it’s likely that despite all your best intentions your usual healthy diet choices were abandoned along with your exercise regime, and replaced with high sugar and high carb foods to embrace the season.
The festive season diet is high in sugar and carbohydrates, also known as a High-GI diet. These high Glycaemic foods are not ‘Nutrient-rich’. They raise the production of insulin levels and, if consumed daily even for a short period of time, can lead to inflammation of skin conditions such as eczema, psoriasis, acne breakouts, and may damage collagen, accelerate wrinkles, and cause premature aging of the skin.
The festive tipple or two also has a role in depleting the moisture levels, which can lead to dry, dehydrated skin. Alcohol increases blood flow, which can cause localised facial skin flushing and dilated capillaries, and these can become permanent.
The festive rich food combinations can also have a negative impact on the “gut-skin axis”. This refers to all the connections between our skin and digestive system. The gut microbiome, the bacteria in your intestines which influences your overall health, especially your skin, is compromised during the festive binge, causing indigestion, bloating, and other uncomfortable digestive symptoms.
If the festivities diet weren’t bad enough, the prolonged lack of natural day light, cold weather, and harsh winds only add to the stresses our skin has to endure during this season.
Winter weather wreaks havoc on your skin making it dry, itchy, and irritated. Harsh indoor heating also depletes moisture from the air and from your skin.
The festive season can also be a stressful time as you try to squeeze Christmas shopping, nativities, and Christmas parties into an already demanding schedule. Being exposed to such stresses affects our adrenal glands, the two small glands located on top of the kidneys which release hormones such as adrenaline, norepinephrine, cortisol, aldosterone, testosterone and androgens. This can lead to inflammatory and acne-like skin symptoms.
Visible Symptoms of a Post-Festive Season Stressed Skin
All of the above can create an unsettled skin: dull, dry, dehydrated, flaky, irritation, redness, uneven skin tone, discolouration, puffy, bloated, dark eye dark circles, acne symptoms such as spots, pimples, congested pores, blackheads, whiteheads, milia, nodulocystic, and additional signs of ageing such as fine lines, wrinkles, loss of skin tone and lack of voluminosity.
Rescue Your Skin – Knowledge Is Key
Sugar, Carbs & Your Skin
Although the exact cause of acne is unknown, studies following non-Westernised populations suggest that diet, especially High-GI is involved.
The glycaemic index (GI) is a rating system for foods containing carbohydrates. The GI allocates a rating to each food, dependant on the sugar content and how quickly the carbohydrate content of a food can be converted into blood glucose. The Glycaemic load can be described as the sugar factor of food.
A Low-Gl diet will support good skin health, as well as a feeling of overall improved health and wellbeing. Low-GI whole foods such as fruits, vegetables, whole grains, beans, pulses, oats and healthy fats are ‘Nutrient-rich’. These Low-GI food types are slow-releasing carbohydrates. which release their energy into the blood stream gradually to provide you with a steady supply of energy.
Processed foods that have a high carbohydrate and added sugar content when packaged provide a High-GI level.
If you are looking to follow a Low-GI diet, always check the carbohydrate and sugar content on the food package, and select produce that is low in these and also low in salt and saturated fat as an all-round healthier option.
Foods High on the Gl Index & Simple Swaps
Cereals (ie. Cornflakes)
Stevia or eliminate entirely
Oat based cereal (no added sugar)
Date based treats
Natural based cordials
Home cooked & raw foods
Limit your fruit intake to 2 servings a day – Select Low-GI fruits such as; Lemons & limes, Raspberries, Strawberries, Blackberries, Cherries, Kiwis, Grapefruit, Avocado
Dietary Tips – To Support Skin Health
Eat 3 meals at regular intervals each day to help regulate the insulin levels, which in turn will regulate energy levels. When we eat food containing carbohydrates, our digestive system breaks them down into sugar, which then enters the blood. As our blood sugar levels rise, the pancreas produces insulin, a hormone that prompts cells to absorb blood sugar for energy. Excess is stored if it’s not used.
Eat plenty of green leafy vegetables, such as: Spinach, Kale and Collards. These leafy greens are packed full of a variety of nutrients that help support skin health, to include powerful antioxidant that eliminate free radicals (damaging cell invaders) from your skin cells, and zinc which contains anti-inflammatory properties.
Include a variety of orange and yellow vegetables to support skin health. They are rich in Vitamin C and carotenoids, including beta carotene which converts to vitamin A in the body. They are high in antioxidants, a critical factor for collagen synthesis, photoprotection, and decreasing photodamage, which are needed for healing.
Select 5 portions of vegetables and fruits with a variety of colours each day to ensure you receive the essential combination of nutrients required for normal skin cell development and healthy skin.
Eat a selection of nuts and seeds, such as almond, walnut, pecan, brasil, cashew, pistachio, pumpkin, sunflower and flax seeds. Nuts and seeds are good sources of protein, healthy fats, fibres, vitamins and minerals like copper, zinc, vitamin A, C and E which contribute to skin wellbeing.
Include oily fish like salmon, mackerel, tuna, and sardines into your daily diet. Fish oil is an excellent source of omega-3 fatty acids. They can serve to regulate the skin’s oil production, reduce acne symptoms, improve skin hydration and minimise signs of aging.
Drink 8 glasses of water per day. This will aid your digestive system to flush out toxins from the body, as well to promote cellular hydration to improve your complexion for healthy, hydrated and glowing skin.
Drink herbal infused teas such as a detoxifying nettle tea, anti-spasmodic chamomile, or peppermint tea. Green tea has an array of health benefits for your body and brain and is high in antioxidants that can improve the health of the skin. However, it does contain caffeine so do avoid drinking in the evenings.
Curb The Chocolate
Eating chocolate is pro-acne and is well founded. Since the sixties, there have been endless of studies to ascertain whether chocolate is a possible contributing factor to acne symptoms. Some suggest that it may be the dairy, or the sugar, and even the chemicals used to create the chocolate that cause breakouts on your skin.
Some studies show that even participants eating a very high percentage of dark chocolate over a period of time were even worse victims of nasty acne lesions.
Eat moderately, be kind to your skin.
Ditch The Dairy
Dairy can be pro-acne according to most evidence-based studies. Unfortunately, the researchers are still trying to establish what the underlying correlation could be.
It is a plausible theory that consuming dairy produce from dairy cows treated with artificial hormones could affect our hormones. Or that the growth hormones already in milk, naturally aggravate acne no matter what. A hormone imbalance is known to trigger acne symptoms in some people.
Dairy products combined with the high levels of refined foods and processed sugars can disrupt insulin levels, which are also known to be acne prone factors.
Forget The Fried Foods
Fast and fried food is cheap, and a cultural norm. But as studies show it doesn’t come without a cost to our skin health, and in fact our overall health. Consuming large proportions of these foods, we experience greater skin inflammation and acne symptoms.
Do Dry January
Alcohol affects blood sugar levels each time it’s consumed. Even the occasional festive drinker can be negatively impacted. Drinking too much alcohol over a long period of time decreases the effectiveness of insulin, which leads to high blood sugar levels and health implications such as diabetes.
Alcohol is a ‘diuretic’. This means your skin loses fluid and nutrients, which dehydrates your entire body, including the skin. This leads to dry, dehydrated, flaky skin. Alcohol increases blood flow, which can cause localised facial skin flushing and dilated capillaries, and can become permanent.
Check out the amazing new rages of alcohol-free options, they’re delicious and have no risk of a hangover!
Nutrition Support & Lifestyle
Nutrition influences skin health, integrity and tone. Well documented studies have shown that dietary changes can improve skin structure, reverse symptoms, and improve appearance.
Choose your food types wisely to achieve a healthier skin complexion. Support your diet with supplements and vitamins to promote healthier skin.
At A Glance Supplements That Promote Skin Health
Zinc, Selenium, Burdock, Carotenoids – Daily Probiotic – Essential Fatty Acids (EFA)
Zinc, Selenium, Gotu Kola, Burdock, Carotenoids – Daily Probiotic – Essential Fatty Acids (EFA)
Turmeric, Curcumin, Zinc – Daily Probiotic – Essential Fatty Acids (EFA)
Ideal Choice – ‘Viridian’ Supplements
- Antioxidant Formula
- Clear Skin Complex
- Natural Vitamin E
- Organic Scandinavian Rainbow Trout Oil
- Vegan EPA & DHA Oil
- Organic Turmeric
- Synerbio Daily High Strength
Viridian Supplements are available at:
Emporium Treatment Clinic.
Visit our SHOP here.
Exercise increases levels of serotonin, dopamine and norepinephrine in the brain, which in turn decreases the body’s elevated hormonal and immune responses to stress, reducing the risk of inflammation and acne symptoms, as well as inducing feelings of improved mood.
During exercise your heart rate increases, it boosts circulation, delivers oxygen and nutrients to nourish cells throughout the body, including the facial muscles and skin cells. The improved blood flow increases the lymph flow, which eliminates toxins from the body.
Choose an exercise you enjoy. This will encourage you to stay with it.
Incorporate a diverse regime to ensure you are working on all levels, physically and emotionally.
If you can’t face any exercise then why not try brisk walk, cycle, or horse riding to get you moving.
Relax & Rejuvenate
To relax is as important as it is to exercise, especially during very demanding and active times of life.Relaxation greatly improves your skin health by regulating your digestion and reducing the activity of stress hormones.
What really makes YOU feel relaxed?
A gentle walk in a park, surrounded by nature, curled up with a cuppa reading a book, listening to music, being creative, or simply a quick nap. Yoga, mindfulness, and meditation practices promote relaxation, as do treatments such as a relaxing facial, massage and reiki therapy.
Systemic treatments provide a holistic approach to managing stress and promoting equilibrium.
Seek Professional Skin Care Advice
A professional and experienced skin care aesthetician can guide you towards the perfect skin care wellbeing program and home care regime.
They should provide details of skin analysis, together with a consultation to ensure the most effective skin care and lifestyle program created to suit your own needs.
Achieve Skin Health – Basic Skin Care Tips
Non-comedogenic skin care products and make-up.
Consistency is key!
The Clear Skin Cookbook – The Medicinal Chef Dale Pinnock
Fuel Food Cookbook – Oliver McCabe
Author: Angela Taffinder the founder of Emporium Treatment Clinic. A practising Aesthetician for 35+ years, holistic and wellbeing advocate and yoga instructor.
Skin Care & Body Analysis & Consultation
Available at Emporium Treatment Clinic provided by Angela Taffinder the founder of Emporium Treatment Clinic and practising Aesthetician for 35+ years
Contact Us here
Health & Wellness Analysis & Consultation
Available at Emporium Treatment Clinic provided by highly qualified, experienced Doctors, Nutritionist, Holistic Medicine practitioners and Wellness experts.
Contact Us here