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  • Writer's pictureTracy Southwick

Skin, Hair and Nails: Healthy from the Inside Out

Physical appearance is a reflection of our inner health. As a naturopath, I look at health, or lack thereof, as being affected by 2 primary factors, toxicity, and deficiency. These factors can occur physically and/or emotionally and can have a dramatic effect on the way we look.

We are all exposed to toxins day in and day out and they can certainly show up on our skin. Regular, guided detoxification programs can make a world of difference with the way we feel and look. If you have not addressed toxins in your body recently, reach out to one of our practitioners to get started on a personalized program. Even doing regular Detox Footbaths and/or Saunas can help keep damaging toxins at bay.




Deficiency can occur due to poor diet, stress, and depletion from toxins. Below are some essential nutrients for skin health, many of which you can obtain from food sources:


Collagen – This popular supplement contains the amino acids our bodies use as the building blocks of hair, skin, nails, and connective tissue. The one I use is from Systemic Formulas and I love it because it contains Hyaluronic Acid, which adds moisture and suppleness to the skin while promoting hair and nail growth. It dissolves easily in warm liquid and I add it to my King Coffee or tea. If you are taking collagen, Vitamin C helps the body utilize collagen, so I always take about 1000mg at the same time. To boost collagen levels even further, I would recommend RegeneMax, a supplement we carry that actually stimulates collagen production. Additionally, grass -ed bone broth is a good food source of collagen. Every time I roast a chicken, I use the bones and skin to make a bone broth in my crock pot. It tastes delicious and you can freeze the concentrated broth in ice cube trays to later add to your meals.


Zinc – Some signs of zinc deficiency include slow wound healing/scarring, white spots on the nails and stinky feet (yes, this is true and linked to lymphatic drainage and hindered detoxification). You can take this in a pill form, of course, but my favorite sources are pumpkin seeds and shellfish (from a clean source).


Silica – This mineral makes up a good portion of our hair, skin and nails. Supplementation can be very beneficial. I prefer the herbal form, as the body loves the natural, food state of minerals because that is how we were meant to absorb them. The herb horsetail has probably the highest level of silica in it and it is the base of an herbal combination called HSN-W (Hair, Skin and Nails) that I love. You can also find Horsetail tea many places to sip on so you can increase silica levels.


Essential fatty acids – If you want supple skin, EFAs are a must. From a supplementation standpoint, I love Krill Oil. Food sources are great, such as wild-caught fish, raw olive oil, avocadoes, and yolks from eggs raised free and organically.


Other Recommendations

Avoid seed oils such as soy, canola, cottonseed, and safflower. They cause damaging inflammation and are reflected in the health of your skin. Likewise, a high sugar, gluten, alcohol and processed food diet is terrible for the skin. Some people also find that dairy products adversely affect their skin. Proper hydration is also essential for skin health and detoxification.

Hormones can greatly affect the skin, including thyroid imbalances. Balancing hormones helps in so many areas. If you feel this is a problem, talk to your practitioner.


What you put on the outside of your body is essential to the health and look of your skin. I am honored to work with Stevie Batyuk, the best esthetician I have ever found. Stevie knows skin like no other and has the intuition to match her gifts. She focuses on non-toxic beauty products and services that can make anyone feel and look their best. She practices in our clinic several days a week and has an Open House (here in our clinic) scheduled for August 7th from 5-7 PM. Pop in to learn more!


Remember, if your skin is inflamed and unhealthy, your insides probably are, as well. Addressing the inside with the outside is a perfect way to help you be radiant and healthy through and through.


All the supplements mentioned in this article are on sale for the month of July at 15% off. Enjoy our focus on Skin, Hair and Nails this month and take advantage of our specials along with Stevie’s Open House.

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