Fermented Face: The Benefits of Probiotics in Skin Care
For years we’ve heard about the benefits of probiotics when it comes to our health—gut health, specifically. Probiotics are “healthy” bacteria, most often found in fermented foods with live active cultures—think: Greek yogurt and kimchi. Research suggests that these bacteria can help with a myriad of health-related concerns—including digestion—but lately, the skin care benefits of fermented foods have been all the rage.
How Healthy Bacteria Benefits the Skin
While just recently getting more buzz, the benefits of probiotics in skin care are nothing new. More than 80 years ago, dermatologists John H. Stokes and Donald M. Pillsbury hypothesized that the stress we experience in life had the ability to negatively alter gut health leading to inflammation on the skin’s surface. They proposed that consuming the probiotic Lactobacillus acidophilus could help the skin, and in recent years these theories are becoming more talked about.
Dr. Rebecca Kazin, board-certified dermatologist at the Washington Institute of Dermatologic Laser Surgery and faculty at the Johns Hopkins School of Medicine, agrees, telling us that having healthy intestinal flora—the bacteria present in our gut—isn’t only important for our digestion tract, but can also be good for our skin. “Maintaining [a heathy flora] is important and probiotics are a great way of doing this,” she says.
Eat Up: Probiotic Foods
Interested in incorporating more probiotics into your diet to reap the possible skin care benefits? Look for foods like yogurt, aged cheese, kefir, kombucha, kimchi, and sauerkraut on your next trip to the supermarket. While further study is needed to substantiate the actual affects of probiotics on our skin, eating a well-balanced diet is always a good choice for your overall well-being!