Acne and Probiotics

According to Dr. Whitney Bowe, a New York-based dermatologist and researcher, many dermatologists are prescribing probiotics with antibiotics. This pairing can help calm antibiotics' negative side effects, like yeast infections—but they may also have an unintended benefit for acne sufferers. After they'd finish the antibiotics, my patients would come back and say they were still taking the probiotics, because they were really helping their skin clear up." 

Probiotics are organisms, such as bacteria or yeast that may improve health; "They are also believed to help the immune system."

How Probiotics Work
"Oral probiotics can regulate the release of inflammatory cytokines within the skin."

This inflammatory cycle may begin with diet, hormones, stress, anxiety, immune system, and/or other factors, which cause an imbalance in the inner microbial colonies, which is when potentially harmful bacteria may have the opportunity take over, causing a cascade of problems..

"When that happens, levels of system-wide inflammation increase," Bowe says, including in the skin. "By taking oral probiotic supplements or by eating probiotics in the diet, we can theoretically restore a healthy environment in the gut and keep the skin from getting inflamed."

The intestinal-skin connection isn’t a new finding: in 1961, a study found that 80% of acne patients, after being given a probiotic, showed clinical improvement.

Other recent studies found that probiotics help acne patients heal faster, produce less sebum (oily secretions), and have fewer acne lesions.

This probiotic, Ultimate Florida Critical Care, has the best reviews on Amazon, but it's not cheap. I think I'd be willing to try it for a month since it's dairy and gluten free. For those who can tolerate dairy, a daily meal or snack of sugar-free Greek yogurt sweetened with stevia and garnished with healthy berries would probably suffice.

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