Probiotics are organisms such as bacteria or yeast in our gut that keep the intestines healthy and protect our immune system. It’s believed that since these agents are anti-inflammatory, they may help with acne, eczema, psoriasis and rosacea says Dr. Gary Goldenberg, a New York based board certified dermatologist. By lining the gut and creating a healthy and sealed barrier, they can prevent inflammation that might trigger acne and rosacea. Can it also prevent skin aging, one of the consequences of skin inflammation?
According to gastroenterologist Dr. Roshini Raj, topical probiotics in skincare help strengthen natural skin defenses, re-balance the skin and protect it from environmental stresses, which all play a role in how healthy and young our skin looks. “By feeding your skin with the elements of good bacteria, which probiotic skin care lines offer, you are preventing the harmful bacteria from taking hold and thus from developing inflammation that may lead to aging skin.” Dr Raj recently launched her own skincare line, Tula. Tula contains probiotics, including yogurt and milk extracts and the products are gluten-free and also free of parabens, phthalates, mineral oil, propylene glycol and petroleum. Available: http://www.QVC.com
David Hauck a chemist for Amala, an organic and natural skincare line also lauds probiotics in preventing skin aging. “Probiotics help fight off bad bacteria, which can attack skin’s protective barrier, causing the inflammation that leads to breakouts, redness and also collagen breakdown. By proliferating good bacteria, probiotics help optimize skin’s pH that helps to prevent sensitivity, excessive dryness and redness. The lactic acid in Amala’s products helps encourage the growth of good bacteria while the silver sulfate helps edge out bad bacteria”. He recommends in particular Amala’s Purifying Face Polish with blue lotus that purifies pores and Purify, a gel moisturizer with vitamins, minerals and amino acids.
Take probiotics supplements too, advises Dr Goldenberg, but make sure it’s from a reputable company. Bio-K+ is a superior liquid probiotic ingestible that has about 50 million live active cultures in both dairy, dairy-free and soy-free options. The bacteria in liquid Bio-K+ are not freeze-dried, which allows them to remain in a natural, undamaged state and begin working immediately.
Available at Whole Foods markets and http://www.biokplus.com
For vegans and raw food aficiondos, try Juice Press’s Proviotic, the only completely vegan probiotic on the market. It’s free of all allergens, lactose, soy, or gluten and artificial ingredients such as magnesium stearate. The solution is 100% pure vegetable juice.
Available at http://www.juicepress.com and the site will help you locate a store near you.
As an office snack, pick up a pack of Healthy Delights Probiotic Chocolate Bites that contain more than one billion strains of live culture probiotics and powerful antioxidants at Walgreens.
Dr Raj recommends getting probiotics from diet rather than supplements. Fermented dairy products, such as yogurt or kefir, are good sources of probiotics. You can also find them in sauerkraut, kimchi, kombucha and miso. And as always make sure your diet is rich in colorful fruits and vegetables that are among the most nutrient-dense foods, full of minerals and antioxidants that can beautify your skin.