By Candace McNaughton, ND

Toxins in the body are eliminated in five main ways:

  • the urine,
  • the bowels,
  • the liver (which sends things to the urine or bowels),
  • the lungs, and
  • the skin.

Elimination through the skin is the reason that one of the most common drug reactions is skin rash.  Sometimes the effect is directly from the drug, and sometimes it is from the body’s reaction to it.

Skin issues can tell us something is wrong inside.  When our hormone balance is off, we can get acne or extra hair growth.  Bumps on the back of the arms can herald low thyroid function or a vitamin A deficiency.  Eczema or psoriasis can be caused by reactions to foods.  Overload of heavy metals can cause skin reactions.  Lung problems can cause the thinner skin areas to become blue.  Unexplained bruising can mean the body is attacking the blood vessels (autoimmune) or the blood is very thin (low platelets).

It is our protector from outside onslaughts such as flying objects, chemicals, and curious bystanders fascinated with anatomy.  It is our protector from infections not just physically, but also in the immune cells that literally line up at the ready. It is our protector from the sun with its melanin.  Its opening and closing blood vessels protect us from temperature changes- when it is cold, the vessels close up and send more heat to the center to protect vital organs.  When it is hot, the vessels open up to release heat.  And sometimes the body does that for no good reason, like in a hot flash!  Our sweat also acts to cool us- when it evaporates, it takes heat with it. Our skin allows us to sense the good and not-so-good things it comes into contact with.  Thank goodness we know something is wrong when we pull that pan from the oven with our bare hands!

And not only that, it’s a bag that holds us together! Let’s take care of it.

Call the office and make an appointment if you have questions about your skin health.