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Probiotics and Skin


We often measure someone’s wellness and health by how they look. Just as the eyes are the windows to the soul, your skin can paint a picture of your health. There are dozens of new natural anti-aging skin care products that use everything from pomegranate oil to detoxifying algae to keep the skin looking young and wrinkle free.

There is even research that shows how probiotics can be a real tool to help keep our skin free from harmful bacteria that cause problems like acne and atopic dermatitis.  While your gut gets the first exposure to things we consume, our skin has direct contact with the outside world.  It is the largest organ in the human body and is a good indicator of health and wellbeing. Just like our gut, the skin supports a large ecosystem of bacteria (1 billion microbes per sq. centimeter) and research into how our skin microbiota affects skin health is just beginning.

The exact nature of the relationship between the bacteria, our skin, and our health is still unclear.  But we do know that we get exposed to bacteria from our mothers at birth, and then we experience another big change during puberty. Initially, it was thought that our skin and the bacteria living there had a benign relationship. However, recent research has suggested that this relationship may be mutually beneficial.

As in the gut, natural microbes on the skin contribute to the skin’s innate defenses.  Skin bacteria do this by producing amino acids that ward off harmful skin bacteria. Research at the Jikei University School of Medicine, Tokyo, Japan has shown that a common skin bacteria called Staphylococcus epidermidis creates antibacterial peptides (two or more amino acids linked together) that can inhibit the colonization of Staphylococcus aureus, a problem causing bacteria on the skin.  Further research at the University of California in San Diego has shown that Staphylococcus epidermidis uses your dead skin cells to produce antimicrobial compounds that protect against infection.

There are many companies developing topical skin products with probiotics, but at present the FDA has not approved any specific new skin related bacterial species for use in products.  So, how do we use probiotics to promote skin health?

In my opinion, the best approach that is available today is to take a probiotic like SuperBio.  The probiotic bacteria and Spirulina in SuperBio combines to reduce inflammation and oxidative stress, which has been closely associated with maintaining skin health.  Strong immune health lessens harmful inflammation, which helps prevent wrinkles, and helps skin recover from UV exposure.  Most importantly, SuperBio is the first step toward feeling healthy, which combined with diet and exercise is the best you can feel, so you can look your best!