Researchers from as far back as 1930 suspected a link between gut and skin health and this has certainly been a cornerstone of understanding for wholistic medicine practitioners. However, modern research is now confirming the importance of this relationship. Recent studies have indicated that small intestine bacterial overgrowth (SIBO) is 10 times more prevalent in those suffering acne rosacea compared to healthy controls. Also, patients suffering from inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) have a significant increase in skin manifestations.
In this infographic, we explore the gut-skin connection. In particular, we look at the role of the gastrointestinal (GI) tract and its influence on acne severity via a systemic effect on inflammation, oxidative stress, tissue lipid levels, pathogenic bacteria, as well as levels of neuropeptides. Although acne is not being suggested as a condition purely of the digestive tract, there appears to be more than enough supportive evidence to suggest that gut microbes, and the integrity of the gastrointestinal tract itself, are contributing factors in the acne process. Through this understanding, the benefits of lactoferrin as an immune-modulating, anti-inflammatory nutrient, becomes a topic of practical interest and we review the mechanisms of action for its use in addressing acne.
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