Welcome to the Calm Mind Clear Skin Series.
I’ll be sharing with you my best Super Skin Practices for reducing stress and tension and in the process helping to calm down red, irritated and inflamed skin …and restoring a healthy, glowing radiance!
We know that stress and tension have a massive impact on minds and bodies, it’s a major factor in many chronic diseases heart disease, diabetes, stoke and autoimmune conditions and also mental health conditions like depression and anxiety.
Stress reduces our ability to digest food properly and get to sleep at a reasonable hour, stress increases inflammation in the body, reduces immune function, and wrecks havoc on our hormones, fertility and blood sugar regulation.
Stress also has a Massive Impact on our Skin!
Which is something we do kind of realize intuitively.
I can distinctly remember from a time when I wasn’t so in tune with my body and didn’t used to listen to the messages it sent me, I would remark to a work mate during times of particularly high work load that “I must be stressed, my eczema has flared up and my skin has broken out in pimples” …It’s amazing when I look back, and realize it often wasn’t until my skin was “screaming” at me with redness and irritation in order to get my attention, that I actually noticed I was feeling the pressure, like REALLY feeling the pressure.
Our Skin is our Protection from the Outside World
Because one of the many functions of our skin is to protect us from the outside world, from the invasion of microbes and pathogens, it has a major role to play in our immune system defense.
So we have an abundance of inflammatory cells in our skin that leap into action, whenever we’re cut or hurt to repair any damage and to restore our skin’s barrier function as quickly as possible.
This also means our skin is hyper responsive to systemic inflammation from the inside, so stress and cortisol can also activate these immune cells in the skin, leading to inflamed skin and skin issues like acne, eczema and psoriasis.
There’s an Incredibly Tight Connection between our Minds and our Skin.
Because our skin is the interface between us and the outside world, it has the largest supply of nerves over any other organ in our body.
Another one of our skin’s many functions is to transmit information about the outside world back to the brain.
Is it hot? Or cold? Is there pain when touch that? Do we need to apply more pressure to keep our grip on that object? Is that woolen jumper itching us to the point where we need to take it off?
This highway of information is actually two-way street, meaning our skin is also incredibly sensitive to our mental and emotional state.
It becomes a means of communication, both for ourselves and others of what might be going on …on the inside.
If we’re embarrassed our skin gets hot and we blush, if we’ve been given a shock or we’re scared, the blood will drain out of our face and we’ll go “white as a sheet.”
And, if we’re stressed or anxious it will also show up as inflamed skin and disrupted skin barrier function with issues like acne, eczema and psoriasis.