How Gut Health Affects Your Skin

How Gut Health Affects Your Skin

Posted by Leigh Coleman on

How does gut health affect skin? 

In recent years gut related messages including the ‘gut-skin axis’ are everywhere and so too are powders, drinks (like Kombucha) and tablets designed to promote optimal gut health. In fact, recent research and medical publications suggest our gut is critical to our overall health & wellness; so much so, it has been named our ‘second brain’.

In this article, we explore the connection between gut health and skin.

 Amperna Gut Health

The Role of Our Gut

The gut (gastrointestinal tract) is the long tube starting at the mouth and ending at the back passage (anus). Its primary role is to process food – from digestion, absorption of nutrients and the excretion of waste.

It plays a critical role in our mood, emotions, immune system and hormone balance. Therefore, ensuring the healthy development & ongoing care of your gut is paramount to your health.

Amperna Digestive System

Some interesting facts about your gut:

  • It is home to tens of trillions of microorganisms known as the microbiome (formerly called flora)
  • Over 1000 different species of bacteria exist in the gut and weigh up to a total of 2kg
  • It has its own nervous system
  • Most of your serotonin (over 90%) is in your gut

The Microbiome

Your ‘gut microbiome’ is home to microorganisms that are critical to your health. Your microbiome begins to develop at birth. During this time, the microbiota start developing and we soon start to pick up useful bacteria from our family and the environment around us.

These bacteria live in your digestive system and help you digest food and absorb nutrients. A healthy microbiome helps support your immune system.

There are several factors influencing the quantity and type of bacteria in our microbiome and whilst most of us have a common type (based on our blood group), we also have our own unique bacteria.

 Amperna Unhealthy Gut

Signs of an Unhealthy Gut

Processed foods, stress, inadequate sleep and antibiotics can play havoc on our gut microbiome. As a result, this can affect other aspects of our health.

Common signs of an unhealthy gut include:

  • Upset stomach
  • Sugar cravings
  • Fatigue
  • Skin problems
  • Food intolerances
  • Autoimmune conditions

 Amperna Skin Problems

The Connection Between Gut Health & Skin Conditions

Both the gut and the skin play a key role in defending our bodies against pathogens from the outside environment. Furthermore, our gut is in constant conversation with our skin via the microbiome and it is suspected that this connection, named the gut-skin axis  has a critical role to play in our skin health.

Whilst your gut does not directly cause bad skin, there is certainly a strong association between poor gut health and skin conditions. Whilst some skin conditions and their link to gut health are easy to diagnose, others are less obvious.

It is believed that when there is an imbalance in gut bacteria (when bad bacteria overrule) our immune system fights back which contributes to inflammatory skin conditions such as acne. Additionally, a poor diet and food allergies may cause certain proteins to leak out of the gut and irritate the skin, causing conditions such as eczema.

 Amperna Skin Health

How the Gut May Influence Skin Conditions

Urticaria (hives)

This common skin condition can be caused by allergies from foods such as nuts, chocolate, fish, eggs, milk.  Chronic urticaria may be triggered by an underlying persistent infection caused by the gut bacteria Helicobacter pylori, Streptococcus or parasites.


Both hormonal and digestive issues can cause acne. The gut plays an important role in how oestrogen is eliminated from the body. When digestive issues slow this process, it can lead to hormonal imbalances. When oestrogen levels are too high in comparison to progesterone levels, it may cause acne.


There are several triggers for rosacea. Diet, climate, allergies and stress can all cause flare-ups of this chronic inflammatory skin condition. It is also believed there is a link between rosacea and gastrointestinal disorders.

Many sufferers of rosacea claim the keto diet has helped their condition.

Eczema/atopic dermatitis

It is suspected that reduced microbial diversity and a leaky gut can result in a weakened immune system. As a result, it can cause skin inflammation and damage to the skin’s protective barrier, increasing susceptibility to eczema.

Is one of your children suffering from skin issues? Read Help for Children Suffering From Dermatitis here.

 Amperna Gut Health Food

Using a Holistic Approach to Maintain a Healthy Gut

As part of our holistic approach to skin care and general health and wellness, it is important we look after our gut.

The BBC recently published an article suggesting how to eat right for your gut bacteria. To improve your overall gut health there are a few principles to follow:

  1. Eat a wide range of plant-based foods. A healthy gut has a diverse community of microbes, each of which prefer different foods.
  2. Eat more fibre. Most people eat less than they should. Fruit, vegetables, pulses, nuts and whole grains feed healthy bacteria.
  3. Avoid highly processed foods. They often contain ingredients that either suppress 'good' bacteria or increase 'bad' bacteria.
  4. Probiotic foods, such as live yoghurt, might encourage more microbes to grow.
  5. Choose extra-virgin olive oil over other fats when you can. It contains the highest number of microbe-friendly polyphenols.
  6. Antibiotics kill ‘good’ bacteria as well as ‘bad’. If you need antibiotics, make sure you eat lots of foods that boost your microbes afterwards.
  7. If your diet is low in fibre, a sudden increase can cause wind and bloating. This is less likely if you make gradual changes and drink extra water.

Kiri Yanchenko, founder of AMPERNA® suffered severe health complications from stress and side effects from medication. She found by that adopting holistic principles she was able to help herself back to full health and glowing skin.

Read Kiri's journey here in My Journey to Skin Health.

AMPERNA® is inspired by Kiris skin health journey. Our products are full of anti-inflammatory anti-bacterial ingredients and contain our probiotic complex. The products and ingredients are inspired by Kiri’s learnings on Holistic Skin Health and the link that she found between gut health and skin health.




Blog article author

Written By Leigh Coleman

Leigh Coleman is a Senior Marketing Manager at a leading FMCG brand with over 15 years of experience leading brand growth strategy, innovation and brand communication. She has extensive experience in product development research and public relations. Leigh enjoys researching the latest trends in the skincare space as she herself has suffered from various skin conditions.

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