Health

Wellbeing with Nutrition
Nurturing the Mind and Body

What's Going On Inside

During the Winter, the body becomes more prone to dryness. Dehydration commonly appears within the hair, skin, lips and nails.This is usually due to a combination of factors including cold weather, poor diet, low water intake and reduced movement within the body. 

Moisturisers, lip balms and conditioners help to ease dryness and irritation but if we really want to fix it we need to support the inside of the body as well!

So before we blame everything on the cold weather, hair, skin, lips and nail health also reflects what's going on inside the body! 

Dry skin, hair, lips and nails often indicate issues with blood flow, blood composition and rising toxicity within body tissues! 

Good Blood flow is key to supplying nutrients, oxygen and releasing wastes from body cells. Say the blood is becoming thick and sticky from a poor diet and inadequate water intake then blood flow to the hair, skin, lips and nails is more likely to be affected as blood flow is more likely to stagnate within the outer parts of the body.

Blood composition is also important. Blood supplies all body tissues with nutrients, oxygen, water etc. However the body always prioritises the brain and major organs for all the good stuff first and the rest of the body including hair, skin, lips and nails gets what's left.  Why? They are positioned in the outer areas of the body and are much lower down on the nutrient priority list. The hair, skin, lips and nails will always show signs of imbalances like dehydration first!

Now important factors like blood pH has to be kept within certain ranges which usually means that any excesses are dumped into body tissues leading to the creation of an imbalanced environment. As the skin is the largest organ it is often used as a dumping ground leading to increased toxicity levels. Also, when there are lower levels of water in the body, water is usually drawn away from the colon and skin to supply other more higher priority areas like the brain and spinal cord.

As toxicity levels rise within the body tissues this creates a more favourable environment where fungi, viruses and bacteria may flourish.  Viral bacterial and fungal infections become more common at this year and affect the skin, nails and lips in particular.

Signs in skin, hair, lips and nails
Possible Indications:

Paleness

Poor blood/lymph flow, low iron, aggravated by cold

Dryness, frizzy hair, ridges on nails

Poor hydration, low essential fatty acids, low vitamin A/C and B-complex, low zinc, aggravated by cold

Roughness

Low essential fatty acids, low vitamin A/C and B-complex, aggravated by cold

Blue undertones

Poor circulation in the skin, nails & lips and low levels of oxygen, aggravated by cold

Black undertones

Toxicity build up, viral/bacteria growth

Red , undertones

Inflammation, excess heat, may be signs of elevated blood pressure

Purple undertones

Blood stagnation. Blood may be too thick and sticky and is stagnating within the skin, lips & nails

Yellow undertones

Toxicity build up in skin, lips and nails which includes bile and may indicate liver issues. Yellow nails may indicate fungal infections

Inflammation

Raised toxicity/acidity, dehydration, low vitamin A/C and B-complex

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<h2">Looking After Your Skin, Hair, Nails and Lips

  1. Help remove dead skin cells from the skin, lips and nails and promote new skin growth by dry skin body brushing. Use circular movements starting from the feet and moving up the body. Gentle skin brushing helps to improve blood flow and improves the feel of skin. Use a small soft toothbrush to brush the face but avoid the delicate skin around the eyes! Do this daily preferably in the morning for around 5 minutes and before showering or bathing. I have been practising dry skin brushing for many years and it has helped considerable to improve the moisture content! I rarely need to use body moisturisers.  
  2. Massaging the scalp helps to improve blood flow to the scalp. Try to do this daily by placing 1-2 drops of oil such as coconut or almond on your fingertips and gently massage the scalp with the pads of your fingers for a couple of minutes and then finish by smoothing your hair by running your fingers through it. I have fond memories of my mother giving me a head massage as a child.
  3. Avoid harsh body products, cosmetics and hair dyes.
  4. Use natural moisturisers like coconut oil, shea butter, palm oil or cocoa butter to protect the skin, hair and nails and especially when out in the cold. My personal favourite is coconut oil. I have been using it to moisturise hair, skin and nails for many years now. It is great as a makeup remover as well!

Dietary Tips

  1. Maintain good hydration by drinking 2 litres of water throughout the day. 
  2. Cut out the junk (excess sugar, salt, damaged/processed fats, processed foods/drinks) and eat fresh.
  3. Eat plenty of fresh coloured fruits/vegetables and leafy green vegetables for a range of vitamins and minerals.
  4. Include essential fatty acids, which help to retain moisture in the skin by consuming sprouted grains/legumes, nuts/seeds, green leafy vegetables and oily fish.
  5. Consume broths made from slow cooking vegetables, meat/fish on the bone and seaweeds for essential minerals. Bone broths are rich in gelatin which supports collagen production in the body which is an essential component of hair, skin and nails.

 

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