Pharmacist Ben Fuchs explains why thousands of people have dry skin.
Dry Skin is a Metabolic Issue
Now that we’ve established that dry skin is not a topical issue, it’s important to understand where the breakdown occurs – with internal biochemistry, that is metabolism.
First, we need to understand how healthy skin receives and maintains adequate levels of hydration. It happens in two ways:
1.)Outside-in: the stratum corneum, or top layer of the skin, contains Natural Moisture Factor (NMF), which is has a high affinity for moisture for moisture and traps ambient water (humidity) within the surface layer of the skin.
2.) Inside-out: lower layers of the skin (the dermis) are hydrated by internal bodily fluids. Components in the dermis including hyaluronic acid and collagen bind water, lubricate skin tissue and store and transport nutrients, hormones and waste products.
So, in order to have adequately hydrated skin, we need NMF and connective tissues including collagen and hyaluronic acid. But it’s not as easy as ONLY applying topical products that contain these ingredients because, although helpful for the top layer of the skin, these molecules are too big to absorb into the lower layers of our skin and therefore only address a small part of the problem. The NMF and connective tissues REQUIRED for essential skin hydration are CREATED through chemical processes that are regulated by metabolism, which is the sum of all chemical reactions that are involved in maintaining the living state of the cells and the organism – allowing us to grow and reproduce, maintain our structure, and effectively respond to our environments. All metabolic reactions are fueled by food and nutrition, which provide the energy to run these cellular processes, and the building blocks with which to BUILD and MAINTAIN.
When there is a lack of adequate nutrition the body begins breaking down healthy tissues and structures, including our connective tissues, to provide fuel for basic function. The first signs of this breakdown can present as dry, dull, tired skin, sagging skin, and overall sluggishness and tiredness, and can eventually lead to a host of overall health issues.
In our next post, we’ll look at the role dehydration plays in dry skin, and why just drinking water isn’t enough to resolve dry skin.
…and, that’s The Truth! ~ Ben