Hair & Skin

Aging Skin & Holistic Health: Thoughts From a Functional Hormone Expert.

Skin Health & Hormone Imbalances

May 20, 2022

Hi, I’m Angela
I'm a functional medicine practitioner & hormone expert working primarily with women in their 40's and 50's to create lasting health.
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Aging Skin Overview

As women age, they experience many changes in their bodies. One of the most common issues is skin imbalances, which can cause everything from minor annoyances to major health problems. If you’re experiencing skin imbalances during this stage, don’t worry – there are ways to address the issue. In this blog post, we’ll explore the truth about aging and skin imbalances, and provide tips for how to get your skin back on track. Thanks for reading!

Aging Skin in our 40’s and 50’s.

As we age as women, especially as we enter into that period of time in our forties and mid-fifties, we notice changes to the skin on our face and possibly around other areas of our body. We wonder if there are things we can do to help either slow down this process or just make it so that we feel more healthy and vibrant as we age. I know this is quite concerning for some women as some of them tell me that they noticed that their skin is getting quite a bit drier. The most common things would be that kind of flaking off around their cheeks and the T-zone (n between the eyebrows and the nose). 

Some women notice they have combination skin where they’re having dryness in one area and still having some acne in other areas. This is troubling to them as they get into their forties and early fifties as to why this is potentially still happening to them.

Beyond the face, sometimes women are noticing changes to their skin and other places. A lot of women report changes around the backs of their arms, often around the upper thighs, sometimes around the neck, I know someone would tell me, they feel like they’ve got the call “Turkey neck”

They’re noticing not only skin issues but wrinkles and changes with lines often found horizontally across the neck. They want to figure out ways they can help optimize their skin health and their overall health and wellness through aging. I want to let women know that you don’t necessarily have to just accept that your skin is going to necessarily change significantly as we age. There are some things that you can do to help you optimize your skin tone, its vibrance and health as you age. 

I also know that for some women, this is very problematic. They don’t feel good when they’re not looking good in their skin. Some of them are telling me they don’t even want to look in the mirror. They find their skin is reddish, bumpy or uneven. They just said they don’t feel attractive and they just don’t feel confident in themselves. We understand that this can be really affecting your overall feeling of your self-esteem and in general, how you present to the world.

There are some things you can do that are natural. I know some women do go for techniques such as Botox and treatments in that regard. And of course, if you want to do that you can, but I also think that it’s important for women to know and understand that there are some natural ways to start healing your skin and getting it to feel potentially better as we age. 

It doesn’t have to be a downhill slide; a feeling like you’re getting more wrinkles and just having your skin look more aged. Ergo, what can we do to help optimize our skin health as we age? I think it’s really important for us to first understand what the top three root causes are of our skin changes as we age.

Top Three Causes of Aging Skin Changes & How to Counter Them Naturally 

1. Chronic Inflammation & aging skin

One of the main causes often has to do with the skin looking either more uneven.This does seem to accelerate year by year as we age. You might have some redness around the cheeks, around the nose area, maybe even up below the ears just above the jawline. Some will call it Rosacea.

You might notice that if you take a really close look at your skin, there’s even some kind of fine red lines, like little capillaries that are maybe never used to be there. These types of changes to our skin where it looks kind of blotchy, uneven and just generally not that nice of a skin tone is often related to chronic inflammation in the body. It’s usually the root cause of why we have skin issues in the first place. If you have some of those symptoms, you might even have some acne that goes along with it as well. Or you could have a combination skin, with dry areas in one, red and oily in another. 

Our skin really is our biggest reflection of our overall health and wellness. We want to be thinking of what’s happening with our overall health. And when talking about chronic inflammation, what it means is the balance in our bodies. It is between what we’re bringing in from a food and lifestyle perspective, versus what our body is able to balance in regards to inflammation.

Quite commonly, the reasons that we have chronic low grade or even higher grade inflammation is due to the foods we’re bringing in and often toxins from our environment. We need to think if we’re eating foods that are high in simple carbohydrates, high in sugar, packaged, processed foods, possibly a lot of red meat, wheat and dairy. Those are still whole foods, but when you eat them in high amounts and  often, they can become pro-inflammatory

If this is you and you have something like this with your diet and then in addition to that, you might be putting products on your skin such as makeup or a skin care product. It might be things for your hair like dyes. There’s so many different products that I find as women that we put on our body throughout our lifetime. These products are seeping through our skin. If there are some toxins in it, it definitely can trigger inflammation in the body as well.

This is also one of the common causes of chronic inflammation and how it builds over time. The more of this stuff that we’re exposed to over our lifetime, the more we may be exposed to the airborne toxicity of these products, depending on what we’re using.

We want to be thinking of how we can start to optimize our chronic inflammation and get it back into balance. I see when I work with women on diet and lifestyle choices, that one of the first places that I see improvement in them is in their skin health. Our skin health isn’t going to come from what we put on the outside in. It’s going to come more from the inside out

Here’s what you can do. 

You can start to eat a healthy whole foods diet. These are foods that are minimally processed and haven’t been stripped of their nutrients. Plant-based foods like fruits, vegetables, and grains are excellent sources of antioxidants, fiber, and other important nutrients. If you enjoy eating animal-based foods, you can still include them in your diet, but make sure they’re lean cuts of meat and low in saturated fat. By making small changes like these, you can start to eat a healthier diet without feeling like you’re making major sacrifices. That’s something that’s really going to help to balance your inflammation in your body.

Aging Skin | Gut Health and Microbiomes 

Another most common root cause of skin imbalances, especially as we age, has to do with imbalances in our gut health, in particular, in the gut microbiome. The gut microbiome is a balance of our good bacteria relative to our unfavorable bacteria.

There can be many reasons why our gut microbiome as women in this age can come or might already have been for a long time out of balance. What happens with estrogen levels as we age is they gradually go down and this is normal. But one thing estrogen does for us is help our digestion. This means that it helps us break down our food so that it can be digested properly and travel to our guts.

As estrogen levels go lower, our digestion sometimes also slows and quite commonly, we will have a bit more vulnerability to a build up of bacteria that is unfavorable in our gut, even if we’re eating a fairly healthy diet. We have to be mindful and aware of this.

If we do have an imbalance in our gut microbiome we also have what’s called the skin microbiome and they reflect each other. The skin microbiome comes from the inside out versus the outside in. If we have an imbalanced gut microbiome, we’re probably going to have an imbalanced skin microbiome.

Here’s what you can do. 

We need to figure out how to address this imbalance. Not unlike chronic inflammation, one of the main ways that we can address our gut microbiome health and get the bacteria more balanced is to make sure that we’re eating a healthy whole foods diet. We want to be eating a diet that’s high enough and fiber that feeds the good bacteria. We want to make sure that we’re not taking in too much toxic products onto our skin, into our body. Being mindful of the types of foods, organic, if possible, is a good way. Try to avoid foods that are high in herbicides and pesticides, because this will destroy a lot of our beneficial bacteria in our guts.

These are some things that we can have control over right away to start getting the balance back in our skin health. I see a more even skin tone in women addressing the gut microbiome health and getting the balance back. Women with combination skin, uneven skin tone and acne, typically notice their skin clear up and it’s so obvious and nice after confronting the gut microbiome imbalance.

Aging Skin | Lowering of Estrogen and Collagen Levels 

Lowering estrogen and collagen levels or collagen production is another cause of skin imbalances as women age. You may notice that your skin might start to sag a bit, especially around your neck, upper arms, and upper thighs. You may also start to see more wrinkles and lines around your eyes. There’s no getting around it – as we age, our skin changes. This is because your body’s production of collagen and estrogen is decreasing with age. While there’s no way to completely stop this natural process, there are things you can do to help optimize your collagen production and estrogen levels with a healthy lifestyle as we age.

Here’s what you can do about aging skin, without resorting to botox or other trends. 

Some things we can do is include foods that contain some collagen in them, or that support collagen production. A lot of antioxidants from plants will really support this. Intake of healthy fats as well will do. A diet high in Omega 3 definitely is ideal. If you’re a vegetarian or a vegan, you can use algae instead. Nuts and seeds are great too. These are the foods that are going to enhance collagen production and they will help with the look of the skin on the outside. 

Start to make sure that you’re including foods that are powerful phytoestrogens that will support the amount of estrogen circulating in your body. Foods such as non-GMO fermented tofu, soy or tempeh are good ones and are umami. Be really mindful of the source and make sure they’re coming from a clean source. Flax seeds are very powerful phytoestrogens. You can grind them up, and put them in your smoothies or various different meals. They are great on breakfasts or in baking. 

If you’re like most women, you want to find ways to improve your skin health that don’t involve harsh chemicals or expensive procedures. And I’m here to tell you that there are things you can do to help! By addressing some of the root causes of skin problems, such as chronic inflammation, gut health imbalances, and lower estrogen and collagen levels, you can see a noticeable improvement in your skin condition in a relatively short amount of time. Feel free to contact me today for a free discovery call so we can discuss how I can help you achieve the beautiful skin you deserve.

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DISCLAIMERThe information in this email is not intended nor implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. All content is for general informational purposes only and does not replace a consultation with your own doctor/health professional 

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