Last night I gave a talk at Cap Beauty, our favorite spot in NYC for natural skin care, on hormones, clear complexion and sustainable beauty. I won’t go into the details of the whole talk here, but I want to share with you the biggest takeaway from the night.
The truth about hormones and their effect on the skin is that often the true underlying cause disturbing our hormones, and causing skin issues ranging from acne and eczema to dry skin and aging, is inflammation.
Inflammation is the chronic activation of our immune system caused by eating a high carb, high processed food diet, lack of proper nutrients, chemicals in our environment, the overuse of medications, and, high levels of stress.
Inflammation affects not only our hormones, but our weight, skin, digestion, energy, and more.
To get to the root cause of inflammation, so that you can rebalance your hormones and have great skin, is a simple formula. It will take you five minutes to read this post, and when you’re done you’ll have the keys to a sustainably healthy life, plus a glowing face.
The following is my 7-step prescription for balanced hormones and lasting beauty.
1. Eat Plant Based Paleo
- Cut out dairy, gluten, sugar, and excess alcohol
- These food cause inflammation in the body, which can wreak havoc on your hormones and show up on your skin.
- Eat more greens, clean protein, and healthy fat
- These foods will give you the idea balance of nutrients, antioxidants, cellular-level building blocks (fats), and cellular fuel (protein), to keep hormones balanced and skin healthy
2. Get the power of these hormone balancing supplements
- Rebuild Protein Shake
- Our favorite shake at Parsley is our Xymogen Rebuild shake, a professional grade protein shake that doubles as a multivitamin and a blast of antioxidants. It’s packed with tons of essential nutrients, vitamins, fatty acids, and antioxidants
- Vitamin D3/K2
- Vitamin D deficiency can cause low estrogen in women and low testosterone in men, which can in turn affect sex drive and mood. Unprotected sun exposure is the best way to get Vitamin D but due to sunscreen use and a lot of time spent indoors most of us are deficient. We recommend Vitamin D3/K2 drops, at a dose of 2000 to 5000 IU daily
- Derived from a main phytochemical in turmeric, Curcuplex reduces inflammation in the body on the cellular level and helps balance estrogen levels
- The Right Probiotics
- Probiotics shift your microbiome which are the important population of the bacteria that live in our digestive tracts. These microscopic little beings are responsible for the health of our intestinal lining, and the modulation of our immune system. Taking a probiotic helps ensure the microbiome is healthy and helping the immune system from producing too much inflammation
3. Know your food sensitivities
- By identifying foods that your immune system is reacting to, you’re able to decrease inflammation in your body. Many people link flares in their skin condition with food consumption. Dairy and eczema is very common example!
4. Green your beauty cabinet
- The skin is an organ of digestion, and the same way it digests nicotine through a patch, it absorbs these toxins into your bloodstream, where your circulation propels them into contact with every single cell. Check out how clean your products are by using the Environmental Working Group’s Skin Deep app – it rates your beauty products on a scale of 1-10; 1 being clean and 10 being highly toxic
- For example BPA, a common toxin in plastics, has been shown to disrupt hormone levels and cause inflammation
5. Heal your microbiome
We already discussed the microbiome’s roll in controlling inflammation and how probiotics help keep it balanced. Here are some other important ways to have a healthy microbiome
- Avoid unnecessary medications like Ibuprofen and antibiotics
- Avoid excess alcohol
- Eat pre-biotic foods such as artichoke, dandelion greens, onion, leeks and asparagus
6. Keep your digestion moving
If you aren’t going to the bathroom every day you are not detoxifying properly. Estrogen in particular recirculates through your system, leading to hormone imbalance. Other toxins also recirculate, leading to inflammation system wide.
- Magnesium Citrate – An essential mineral, magnesium helps the body relax which in turn allows for more regular digestion
7. Keep your mind calm and clear
Stress elevates cortisol which in turn causes immune dysfunction, inflammation and hormone imbalances. The best way to lower stress is to develop a daily meditation practice. It’s scientifically proven to lower cortisol levels!
Try a simple meditation for 10 minutes. Here are 2 of our favorite options
- If you’re new to meditation or are trying to commit to a regular practice check out an app like Headspace, which offers 10 minute guided meditations
- Try this simple asymmetrical breathing exercise
- Inhale for a count of 4
- Hold the breath in for 5
- Exhale for 8