Natural Skin Care

by Amy Coates, RHN, BSc


What do stress, tanning, and smoking have in common? They can all lead to premature aging of the skin. You can get a general idea of your overall general health just by looking at the health of your skin. If your skin is in trouble, it’s a pretty good bet that your organs (specifically your lungs, colon, kidneys, and liver) and internal functions are not working optimally.

The skin is the largest organ in your body and serves many functions other than simply being your “birthday suit.” Most importantly, it is a key organ of elimination. Every time you sweat, you release toxins through your skin. It is important to have a shower after you sweat so you can remove the newly released toxins. This may be a reason why sweat smells so awful, giving you natural motivation to jump into the water!

The one thing you can do right now to improve the quality of your skin is this: drink more water. Water is the ideal beverage for your skin, and choosing water over soda, juice, caffeine, and other beverages will not only take a load off your organs of elimination, it will also cause you to slim down without having to put in the effort!



Cigarettes contain so many chemicals that stress the liver and other organs of elimination. If your body cannot keep up with the toxic demand you put on your body, it will manifest as disease. Toxin accumulation due to smoking can manifest as any disease, anywhere, at any time. Yes, there are some people who can smoke daily and live to be 100. There are always rare exceptions, but the odds of you smoking and living to 100 are about as likely as you winning the lottery.

If you want healthy skin, you’ve got to quit smoking. I don’t care why you smoke, and I don’t care about hearing about why you can’t quit. Just quit. Find a way and do it now. No excuses.



Stress, like smoking, can manifest as disease. But stress doesn’t only come from work or a bad relationship with a friend or lover. The foods you eat can place unnecessary stress on your body as well - making you extra sleepy, lethargic, and unable to handle life’s stressful situations.

Stress can cause skin outbreaks. Focus on empowering solutions to problems rather than the problems themselves. If you are in a toxic relationship with a lover, friend, family, or coworker, try to mend the relationship with forgiveness and love. If the relationship is not worth saving, a clean break may be in your best interest. When you end a bad relationship, you may even notice a physical ailment clear up at the same time such as less back and shoulder pain, clearer skin, and greater flexibility.


Sun Exposure

Although sunlight is natural, the environment we live in is far from it. Pollution and destruction of the ozone layer mean ultraviolet light is more intense than ever. And due to the excretion of toxins through your skin and all of the chemicals you put directly on it, UV light can damage your skin. While sun block is sold to protect against UV light, it may just add more toxins to your already overloaded body. There are natural sun block products available that nurture the skin, but the number one recommendation to protect your skin from sun exposure is to decrease the total toxic load on your body.


How to Decrease Your Toxic Load

Try dry-brushing to exfoliate the skin and maximize its mechanism of detoxification. Sweat out the toxins. Get running, play some sports, or even take a steam in the sauna. Get an herbal facial to cleanse your pores.

Eat as organically as possible to reduce commercially used pesticides/herbicides, etc. Eat more raw foods and get plenty of vegetables and fruits. Fruits and vegetables are high in water content, high in nutrients, provide the fiber necessary for proper elimination, and aid detoxification of the skin rather than add to an already toxic system.

Avoid cooked fats and oils. Eat eggs, poultry, and red meat in moderation, 2-3 times a week. Fish is an even better option. Use cold-pressed virgin olive oil and flax oil unheated. These oils nourish the skin, keeping it supple and soft. When fats and oils are heated, trans-fats are created. Your body does not recognize them, cannot use them efficiently, and your organs of detoxification suffer as a result. Anything your body cannot process or use will be stored as fat, far away from your organs. Toxins are stored as fat. It is a protection mechanism to protect your vital organs from damage.

Pinpoint allergies and remove them from your diet. Dairy and wheat are the most common allergens, and most people show vast improvements without them. Try removing them from your diet for 2 weeks to see benefits. Dairy especially is an acne culprit!

Steer clear of chlorinated water. Drink filtered water, get a filter for your shower, and swim only in salt water pools. Chlorine is notorious for drying out the skin, killing beneficial gut flora, and eliminating good bacteria on the skin. Also stay away from anti-bacterial soaps for the same reasons!




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