Lemon water with coconut oil when I wake up.
After I brush my teeth and tongue scrape (an ancient Ayurvedic way to detox) I drink a full glass of lemon water and take a tablespoon of coconut oil. Starting your morning out this way will improve your overall health, but your skin specifically. Here’s why.
First, after eight hours of sleep (hopefully you got eight hours, that’s another thing I do every single night to keep my skin healthy), the body is dehydrated. Drinking a glass of lemon water jumpstarts digestion. But adding the lemon also detoxes the liver – one of our main eliminatory and detoxification organs.
This is because lemon encourages the liver to produce more enzymes, thereby more effectively removing toxins, waste, chemicals, unfriendly bacteria, etc. from the body. In turn, this not only improves digestion and detoxifies, but reduces inflammation as well.
Guess what is at the root of skin issues? Inflammation.
Eat real, whole, unprocessed foods.
For anyone who suffers from acne, dehydrated skin, uneven tone, rosacea, psoriasis, eczema, etc. – diet is at the root of the issue. When I had severe acne, I was continually told that diet had no impact, and continually prescribed dangerous drugs that didn’t work.
It wasn’t until I changed my diet that I saw any significant difference in my skin. Remember how I said inflammation is at the root of any skin issue? Well, diet is one of the key factors in balancing inflammation.
You can eat an inflammatory diet or an anti-inflammatory diet. You can eat foods that promote healthy clear skin – like vitamin A (retinol, not beta carotene found in carrots, sweet potato and squash – although these foods are very healthy, they’re just not an adequate source of true vitamin A), zinc, vitamin D, omega-3s, etc. or you can eat a diet rich in foods that contribute to unhealthy skin – sugar, refined carbohydrates, vegetable oils, soy, etc.
I find that majority of people over complicate eating healthy. It’s actually quite simple. You don’t need to count calories, count carbs or count your grams of fat. Just eat whole, unprocessed foods your ancestors would recognize.
Would you ancestors recognize a soy chicken nugget? Don’t eat it.
Would your ancestors recognize an avocado? Eat it.
Would your ancestors recognize a 100 calorie snack pack? Hell no.
Would your ancestors recognize a piece of salmon? Yes, yes ya’ll.
Focus on these food groups:
- Vegetables – all kinds! Eat as many as possible.
- Healthy fats – coconut oil, avocado oil, olive oil, grass-fed butter, etc.
- Protein – opt for pastured chicken and eggs, wild seafood and grass-fed red meat.
Eat smaller amounts of:
- Fruit – fruit is nature’s candy. Majority is not particularly nutrient dense but is high in sugars (not refined sugars, no, but still sugar). For example, fruit salad is not an adequate breakfast. Fruit salad is dessert! Focus on berries, which are rich in antioxidants and fiber while lower in sugar.
- Dairy – some people digest dairy well, others do not. It can be a source of gut and skin issues. Always opt for grass-fed, full-fat dairy – and raw when you can. I focus on fermented dairy, like kefir and yogurt.
- Grains – grains in general are difficult to digest and they are not nutrient dense. I recommend avoiding majority of grains, but some people do well eating smaller amounts of gluten-free grains like rice, oatmeal, corn or quinoa.
Fermented foods are the holy grail of keeping my skin healthy. They are one of the things I eat several times a day to lower inflammation, improve gut health, reduce unhealthy bacteria in the gut while bolstering the healthy bacteria and they’re just amazing as an ancestral food that improves so many things within the body (including mood!).
Majority of people who suffer from skin issues also have issues with their gut and an overgrowth of harmful bacteria in the digestive tract. This is where ferments come in. They’re rich in various strains of probiotics, enzymes and minerals. They are incredibly powerful.
Ferments I love and eat daily:
- Fermented salsa (I make my own)
Yes, I do supplement. I find that these days, it’s just not possible to obtain everything from food alone. Our ancestors were more easily able to accomplish this because their food was more nutrient dense, their soil wasn’t depleted, their carrots didn’t travel 2,500 miles to reach them, and they didn’t have the modern convenience foods that we all sometimes cave to (hello, gluten-free pizza).
So I supplement. Keep in mind that what is right for me is not necessarily right for you. Onsult with your doctor and get blood work to determine what you need. Here’s what I take:
- Prenatal vitamins (I’m pregnant and they’re loaded with goodies)
- A probiotic (in addition to my ferments)
- Liver pills (because realistically I just don’t eat enough liver)
- Vitamin D3 (if I didn’t get enough sun that particular day)
- Cod liver oil (alllll the omega-3s!)
- Collagen (for gut health and it’s insanely amazing for fine lines and wrinkles)
The same morning and evening routine without fail, plus some extra skin love throughout the week.
My morning routine:
- Wash face with water or charcoal bar.
- Tone using this Clear Toner.
- Add a light layer of this Clear Moisturizer.
- Apply tinted SPF.
- Oil cleanse with this Clear Oil Cleanser.
- Apply toner.
- Apply moisturizer.
- Apply this oil blend on my scars and fine lines.
- Use Frownies on the fine lines under my eyes (seals in the oils and erases them overnight).
Extra weekly skincare love:
- Twice a week I’ll use this Charcoal Mask.
- Exfoliate twice a week.
- Use a derma-roller twice a week to promote collagen production, plump skin, reduce fine lines and help heal old acne scars.