In episode 37, Dr. Trevor Holly Cates addresses many common skin problems like acne, aging, eczema and other and provides actionable tips to improve your skin.
Dr. Trevor Cates was the first woman licensed as a naturopathic doctor in the state of California and was appointed by former Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger to California’s Bureau of Naturopathic Medicine Advisory Council. Known as “The Spa Dr.,” Dr. Cates sees patients at world-renowned spas and in her Park City, Utah private practice with a focus on anti-aging, hormone balance and glowing skin.
Thank you so much for joining me this week. Please leave any comments or feedback in the comments section below.
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Katie: Hi, and welcome to the “Wellness Mama,” podcast. I’m Katie from wellnessmama.com. Did you know that your skin, your body’s largest organ, makes up about 15 % of your total body weight? And the skin on different parts of your body are exactly suited to that part of your body? For instance, the skin on the bottom of your feet is about seven times thicker than the skin on your eyelids. And today’s guest and I will be talking a lot about the skin.
Dr. Trevor Holly Cates was the first woman licensed as a naturopathic doctor in the state of California. And she’s known as “The Spa Dr.” She sees patients at world-renowned spas and at her private practice in Park City, Utah with a focus on anti-aging, hormone balance, and especially, glowing skin. And she’s the host of her own podcast, “The Spa Dr.,” podcast, and also created “The Glowing Skin Summit,” online. And I’ll have links to all of those in the show notes.
Also, I wanted to mention, with gratitude, the sponsor for today’s podcast episode, Vital Proteins, they offer pastured, grass-fed gelatin and collagen powders, which are, ironically, also great food skin. And they are pasteurized and humanely sourced and they just have incredible products. And if you wanna check them out, go to wellnessmama.com/go/gelatin.
Now, without further ado, let’s welcome Dr. Trevor. Dr. Trevor, thank you for being here.
Dr. Trevor: Great. It’s great to be here, Katie.
Katie: Awesome. Well, I’m so excited to talk because you are an expert in skin health and I feel like that’s an important issue for so many people and something that so many people really struggle with. And I know I’ve talked to you about it in person, but can you explain how you became “The Spa Dr.?”
Dr. Trevor: Well, actually, it’s pretty simple. I worked in a spa. I’m a naturopathic physician. I’ve been in practice for 15 years and about five years ago, I started working in some spas and I got to be known as “The spa Dr.” And one of the things that I’ve realized is even when I’m not working and spas, right now, I have my own private practice in Park City, Utah. And I do consult with spas but I’m not working in a spa right now. And but what I realized was that you don’t even have to be in a spa to get some of the benefits that people associate with being in a spa. So I’ve worked a lot with educating people, teaching people how they can get a lot of the same benefits from their own home and how to achieve that inner and outer nourishment that…just like they’ve just stepped out of a spa. Know a lot of easier relaxation and nourishing things that people associate with being in a spa, you can do a lot of that in your own home. So that’s how I’ve gotten to be known as “The Spa Dr.”
Katie: I love that. I would think it would be much more appealing to go to someone called “The Spa Dr.,” than just a regular doctor, anyway. Let’s talk about how the skin is such a good indicator of overall health. Because I get a lot of questions on post. I have recipes for DIY lotions and cleansers and different skin products and serums. And people always ask if this will “fix” their acne or their problem. And I’ve written about this in regards to eczema but I always tell them that the skin is really just kind of showing you what’s going on inside your body. So nothing topical is gonna truly fix it if you’re not addressing your body as a whole and you’ve written on this so much. So can you talk about your take on this and how the skin, how does it reflect our internal health?
Dr. Trevor: Yeah, absolutely. Well, I consider the skin our magic mirror, as a great indicator of showing us the health of our internal body. The health of our entire body shows up on our skin. So if people have dry skin or eczema, acne, rosacea, psoriasis, any skin conditions or signs of premature aging, then that can be a sign that the body’s out of balance. And when we restore our health from the inside out, we can really have glowing skin, clear skin. So, I work a lot with people on…really, it’s a two-step approach, you wanna address skin from the inside as well as from the outside.
So, you know, the foods that we eat are so important in our overall health, our digestive health, our hormone balance, our exposure to toxins. All of these things play a role in our skin’s health. And a lot of us, people, just think, “What can I put topically on my skin to just, you know, to get rid of that problem?” But really, there’s so much more to that. And topical things can certainly help and it is part of it. But what we do internally in that creating internal balance is also very important.
Katie: Yeah, I absolutely agree. And I feel like maybe sometimes the things we do, topically, or even just kind of as a band-aid for our skin can actually kind of mess up our health in other ways. I have a lot of friends, I know who are women who have gone on antibiotics, who are on the pill to try to improve their skin or their acne. But just how you just mentioned with your skin reflecting your internal health, is that even a good idea? It seems like antibiotics would address infection in the body but maybe that’s something someone should look at as a whole like, “Is there an infection in my body I need to deal with?” or if it’s the pill, “Are hormone imbalances that I should really address before I just take this to fix my skin?” What do you think on that?
Dr. Trevor: Yeah, no, there is this general belief in conventional medicine that we want to suppress symptoms. So when someone has something like acne, what can we do to just suppress that? Rather than looking at “Why is this happening? Why do we have eczema? Why do we have acne?” And trying to find the underlying cause of that and address that. Because this is a very naturopathic approach. And when we do find the underlying cause, the root cause of something and address that, we’re gonna help not just the skin, but we’re gonna help the health of the overall body.
So, with something like taking antibiotics, that my might create a short-term solution. It might suppress the symptom, it might take care of it in the short term but it creates imbalances in the body. When we take antibiotics, we kill off not only the bad bacteria, but we also kill off good bacteria. And the good bacteria in our body help maintain a healthy balance. It help our digestive system stay healthy and our immune system stay strong. And both of those things are really important for skin health. And so when we throw off the balance, you know, the gut microbiome becomes disturbed, that balance of good bacteria in the digestive tract.
Then it affects the skin and the skin has its own microbiome, its own balance of microorganisms that live on the skin that keep it in balance and keep it from breaking out, from having eczema. You know, it’s this protective barrier that’s there to keep the skin healthy. So when we do things like antibiotics, we’re disrupting that natural balance that the skin has, and as well as the internal body. And then when we do things like birth control pills, we’re basically telling the body, you know, “We’re gonna tell you a different way to balance the hormones.” So it’s a synthetic way of adjusting hormones which actually suppresses testosterone, which is one of the reasons why it can help things like acne. But in the long term, you’re throwing your hormones out of balance and it’s just going to lead to other problems.
Katie: Yeah. That makes so much sense. What are some of the things, maybe, that dermatologists don’t often tell people but that are really important to know?
Dr. Trevor: Yeah. And, you know, I love dermatologists. I’m not a dermatologist. But, you know, I do like dermatologists. They’re great. And it’s good to have them when we need them. But unfortunately, there’s a lot of misinformation that is being shared, and/or things that are not just not being told. And so one thing is that the skin is a reflection of what’s happening inside the body, we’ve already talked about that. Dermatologist really don’t talk about that. They don’t, you know, say, “Oh, well, you know, since you have eczema, maybe there’s something going on with your digestive tract.”
They don’t usually talk about those things. The second thing is that the medications that we, like we talked about, medications that they’re commonly prescribing don’t really fix the problem and sometimes they might and help. But in the long term not really addressing the root cause. The third thing is, you know, the skin has its own microbiome. And dermatologists don’t oftentimes talks about that, about when you put topical antibiotic treatments on your skin, that that’s actually going to disrupt that skin microbiome. And again, short term fix, but not a long-term solution.
Fourth thing is that what we eat can greatly impact our skin. And dermatologists, certainly, don’t talk about this, for the most part. There are some integrative dermatologists out there. They’re not that easy to find. I have one on my Glowing Skin Summit, but I could tell you they’re not easy to find. But in general, there are so many things that we can do with diet that can help with the skin. And dermatologists, generally, don’t talk about that.
The fifth thing is that products you put on your skin also affect your internal health. So there are a lot of toxic ingredients in our personal care products that can disrupt our internal health, disrupt our hormones. For example, there are a lot of hormone-disrupting chemicals in common skincare products and ingredients. And so, on average, people use about 11 different personal care products, 9 to 12 different personal care products that expose us to over 100 different unique ingredients each time, each day. And because…unfortunately, the United States FDA does not regulate this skincare ingredients very well. There are a lot of toxic ingredients. Whereas the United Kingdom, the UK, the EU has banned hundreds of ingredients in skincare products, the FDA has discontinued, has stopped the use of only, I think it’s 11 or 12 that they have banned in skincare products.
So the things that we put on our skin can affect our health. And a lot of those people think when you put something on your skin, it’s just staying on the surface. But we know that that’s not true. Skin care products are actually designed to penetrate the skin. So they do actually get into your bloodstream and some of these chemicals are known in research to create hormone-disrupting effects. And so what that means is that, you know, our hormone systems and the synthesis, the breakdown, the actions of our hormones can be impacted. So things like thyroid problems, fertility issues, those are some of the things that we’re seeing that people can have as a result of this exposure to endocrine or hormone-disrupting chemicals.
Katie: Yeah. That’s staggering. I’ve noticed that, too. And for years, when I was younger, I, especially in college, I would use all kinds of stuff on my skin. I never really questioned it because it was one of those like kind of you can get in denial of “How can this really impact my body that much?” But it really does. And as a follow-up, you mentioned the role of food for skin health. And I love reading about this and researching it. I think it’s fascinating. But can you talk about, maybe, some of the core foods that you recommend or say to avoid or things that might nutritionally be helpful for healthy skin?
Dr. Trevor: Yeah, absolutely. And the foods that are, particularly, bad for our skin, I would say the two top ones are sugar and dairy. So with sugar, what happens is the sugar creates glycation issues. So sugar can actually bind to collagen and create, you know, changes in the collagen, make our skin less elastic, or more hard and firm. And also, sugar can inc…What sugar does, too, is, when we eat a lot of sugar increases our blood glucose which then in return increases our insulin levels, which then can trigger an increase in androgens. And we know that androgen excess is one of the reasons why people get acne breakouts, you know. Especially in the teenage years or when women go through hormonal changes is that androgen excess that can cause this breakout. So sugar is a big problem for our skin looking youthful and aging gracefully, as well as for things like acne breakouts.
And dairy is a big problem because, in general, dairy is a pro-inflammatory food. So it’s gonna create more inflammatory conditions in the body. Inflammation is one of the big triggers for skin problems, like hard skin inflammation because things like acne, and eczema, psoriasis, there’s a lot of internal inflammation going on in the body. And that’s one of the reasons why it comes out in skin problems. So again, dairy is a more of pro-inflammatory food. There’s actually been studies done on dairy being a big trigger for acne, in particular, skimmed milk seems to be the worst kind of dairy for acne. And I think it’s probably because when we look at skimmed milk, it doesn’t have the fat in it to balance out the sugar.
So dairy contains lactose, which is a milk sugar, naturally high in sugar so you don’t have that fat to balance it. Again, this then lead down the path of those high-sugar problems that I was mentioning. And the third thing about dairy is that it contains hormones. And even if you buy organic dairy products, you know, there are hormones, naturally, in milk, it’s just the nature of it. And, you know, and milk comes from mammals to feed babies, so it’s, you know, the way that it works is if there’s prolactin, there’s growth hormone and other hormones naturally in milk.
So again, and those hormones can trigger things like acne. So, those are two foods I would say to be, particularly, aware of and be careful. There are some foods that are really good for your skin too. For example, avocados rich in mono unsaturated fats, really good oils in there that they can help nourish our skin. And what’s interesting about avocados and some of these other foods is you can put them, topically, on the skin as well as getting them internally. And you can get the benefits of those fats both externally and internally when you eat them and they’re, you know, they’re high in things like vitamin E, which we know is good for the skin. Vitamin A.
And so, avocado’s a good one. Wild salmon, another, you know, it’s high in Omega 3s. So really great for decreasing inflammation. I talked about being so important, as well as providing those really beneficial oils that our cells need, our skin needs to have a healthy glow and I…wild salmon because we don’t want to get farm-raised salmon. In fact, if people have the choice between wild salmon and farmed salmon and just, you know, I always go with wild salmon. And if you don’t have that choice and then farmed salmon is the only choice on the menu, I would even just skip the salmon because farmed salmon is full of environmental toxins like PCBs. And so we don’t need those extra exposure to toxins. And also they don’t have the same kind of beneficial oils that the wild salmon has.
Katie: That makes a lot of sense. And that’s so fascinating, what you said about sugar and binding to the collagen. Because I’ve researched collagen a lot and it’s fascinating to me, it’s role on the skin and how we can support that with diet. So literally, sugar can make you look old and have acne at the same time. So it’s not a good combination. Let’s get practical for a minute, can you give some specific suggestions for acne? Because I get this question a lot from readers, usually via email. And I know that in my teenage years, it can be a real struggle to have acne and you can be very self-conscious and it is always there and always just very visible on your face. So are there any good acne remedies or diet suggestions that don’t require the pill or antibiotics?
Dr. Trevor: Yeah, absolutely. And, you know, I did mention sugar and dairy being big trigger foods for acne. So definitely, looking at those two foods and trying to eliminate those and really to get the best results, some people are trying to avoid a food. You really have to avoid it for a good 10 days to notice the results and completely taking it out. So that’s what, oftentimes, I’ll have people do is take out at least those two and then maybe also adding in things like eggs and gluten. Those are two other big ones as well as processed foods and caffeine, alcohol. Those kinds of things, also, can be good to take out.
So I often times with people with acne, we’ll put them on a cleanse program or we’re taking out these foods for 10 to 14 days, and as well as doing other liver-supported things just to find that detoxification is really important for all health problems, but especially for acne. And so, some of those people need additional detoxification support. Then also, making sure that you’re having a good, externally, having a good regimen for cleaning. Having good skincare products. A lot of times, people don’t realize that the pH of the skin actually needs to be mildly acidic in order for those skin microbiome, that I was talking about, to flourish. And a lot of cleansers and topical treatments actually have a very high pH so they’re not going to support that mildly acidic environment that the skin needs to have a healthy microbiome. And so looking at your skincare products and whether or not they are mildly, civically, we generally want to be in a pH of around 4 or 4.5 to get the best results.
And that’s not just for acne, it’s really for overall skin health. But for acne, it is particularly important. And then having a daily regimen doing, you know, with a good cleanser and moisturizer and people, at times, think that they don’t want to put any kind of oil on the skin because it’s gonna create more acne breakouts. But it actually depends on the type of oils and the type of moisturizer you use. Because sometimes people have acne but they also have dry skin. So, you know, finding personal care products that work well for you.
And then a few other treatments suggestions is there’s been some good research on 4% niacinamide gel, which is vitamin B3 topical treatment. And getting that, applying it twice daily to the skin can help relieve acne. So that is a nice treatment, 4% niacinamide. And I get my local compounding pharmacist to make that for my patients. But I do think that it is available over-the-counter as well. And then also zinc deficiency, sometimes, occurs for people with acne. So taking zinc can be a good nutrient to make sure that you have as part of your regimen.
Katie: Those make a lot of sense. This may be a controversial one, but what about Botox? Because I’ve been recently shocked to find out that even among women my age and my friends that Botox is pretty popular and it’s not like we’re even that old yet. Are there risks or problems with Botox, and are there any natural anti-aging solutions for the skin that maybe don’t require injections?
Dr. Trevor: I’ve looked at the research on Botox and I haven’t seen anything, so far, that’s come out on long-term negative effects. Now there’s, certainly, people that can have some short-term problems with those. Especially if they don’t go see someone that is particularly good and trained in doing this, they can end up with uneven looking faces and it just doesn’t look real, you know, people just don’t like natural when they have had a lot of Botox done.
So, you know, Botox is a neurotoxin. And so basically, what you’re doing is when it’s injected into the skin, it’s paralyzing the muscles. And it’s a kind of…if you think about it, it’s kind of a scary thing to be doing. So, even though the research doesn’t necessarily say there are negative, long-term effects, I am concerned that we might be finding something out in the future. So, I do try and discourage people from doing that. And certainly, like I talked about, some of the things that we talked about with decreasing sugar intake is really important to help make sure that our skin ages gracefully. And then doing those topical treatments with mildly acidic applications of, you know, cleansers, serums, moisturizers and with mildly acidic formulations are gonna help the skin age gracefully and not get those early signs of wrinkling and fine lines. You’re gonna be less likely to have those.
In addition, there are some studies that showed that using mildly acidic skincare products could actually, in the studies, that actually reduce the depth and length of wrinkles size. So using these kinds of products, really, are important. And then, you know, they’re certainly having a healthy diet. But I do encourage people, especially young people, you know, look for other ways to enhance your beauty and have graceful aging to having Botox done in your 20s, 30s…I think it’s kind of…it’s really unnecessary and I’ve heard that it helps prevent wrinkles. And that’s one of the reasons why young people are doing it, but I haven’t really found anything in the literature that really shows that that’s true and I haven’t seen that that’s necessarily true in my practice, too. I’ve seen people, over the years, getting Botox and they still seem to be aging just like everybody else.
Katie: Yeah, I think it’s unavoidable for sure. So, just to clarify that, naturally acidic facial products, that’s fascinating, I’ve never heard that, specifically, before, but would that be things like vitamin C serum with the right pH or things like that?
Dr. Trevor: Yeah, vitamin C can be naturally acidic. And what people can do is sometimes some of the skincare products will actually list on there, what the pH is. Or you can contact the manufacturers and ask them what the pH of their products are. Somebody will have to do a little bit of research on it but it’s definitely worth it.
I am creating my own skincare line and hopefully, it’s going to be ready in November. And one of the reasons I’m doing this is because it’s hard to find a whole system of, you know, the cleanser, serum, moisturizer, the whole system that is all mildly acidic and with natural ingredients. So, that’s why I’m creating my own because people keep…have been asking me over and over again, “Where can I get this?” And they’re hard to find. They’re not that easy to find. And there is this myth out there that if you’re getting natural skincare products, that means that you’re getting, you know, you may not be getting exposure to the chemicals but they’re not gonna work. Which now, I realize there is the science, we have that information to design products that can actually be natural and effective.
Katie: Yeah, I agree. I’m really excited to see that there seems to be a lot more interest in, people are demanding these kinds of options. And I think we’re gonna find that like you and so many others have great options soon. And another tough skin problem that I know a lot of people struggle with, and especially that their children struggle with is eczema. And it’s so heartbreaking to see little kids who are suffering with this itchy, painful skin. And I know so many moms who are just like at their wits end with dealing with their child’s eczema and they don’t know what to do. So can you talk about some ways that we can help address eczema, both internally and externally?
Dr. Trevor: Yeah. I’ve gotten the best results with eczema with more of a focus on an internal approach. And so the biggest things that I found with eczema are digestive issues and food intolerances or allergies. And so it’s important to look at digestive health with skin problems but especially with eczema because a lot of times what’s happening is you probably talk with your audience about leaky gut syndrome or the hyperpermeability of the digestive tract lining. You have talked about that.
So just to kinda go through that, again, it’s just, you know, the digestive tract can become more permeable than it should after, you know, having a poor diet, from stress, from medications like antibiotics. And so then what happens is when people eat food, the food, instead of just passing the digestive track, it can slip through those little openings, so there’s this this leaky gut, there’s the hyperpermeability. And then the body sees those little particles as foreign and creates an immune response that triggers inflammation and leads to a number of health problems. And one of those health problems is eczema.
So, the way we help address leaky gut syndrome is finding and avoiding any foods that are trigger foods as well as healing the digestive tract lining with things like probiotics which help with the gut microbiome, and other nutrients like L-glutamine that can help heal that digestive tract lining.
And then also, you know, identifying the food intolerances, there’s a difference between allergies and intolerances, as I imagine your audience knows. And doing testing to determine that or doing an elimination and reintroduction diet can be helpful to identify those foods. I find that, especially, with kids, it’s hard to do the elimination and reintroduction diet. So oftentimes, we’ll do testing. So there are specialty labs that look at, specifically, food intolerances or food sensitivities. And then there are allergists that will look at food allergies to see if someone has those things because it might not be the most common things that we think of which are dairy and gluten and eggs and soy, which are, you know, these are some of the common foods that we think of as triggers for allergies and intolerances.
I’ve actually seen kids, for example, I’ve had patients, for example, that their parents took, you know, children, they are taken off of those common foods and were giving them other things, and then we found out it was things like almonds. And here they were, the parents were, you know, giving them almond milk to help with, you know, to avoid dairy. But the big trigger food was almonds. And so when we took that out of the diet, the eczema cleared out. So it can be pretty simple, but if somebody has had it for a really long time, that repair, that digestive tract lining can take a little bit longer.
Katie: Yeah, that makes sense, for sure. So to make sure I understand and listeners understand, even if they’ve had like allergy testing on their child and they know that there’s maybe a peanut allergy but that was like allergy that came up, they could still have an intolerance that wouldn’t show up on an allergy test but they could be contributing to things like eczema?
Dr. Trevor: Correct. Yes. So when someone goes to see an allergist and does a skin prick or those scratch test, that’s very different than the types of specialty labs…at immunoglobulins like IgG and IgA that indicate those levels are high, that indicates a food sensitivity or intolerance. And the difference is, you know, with an allergy, those are oftentimes more anaphylactic or immediate types of reactions like eating a food and developing hives that can be more of an allergy or environmental things or cat dander or that sort of thing, those are usually more of an allergy. For as intolerances, there can be an immediate reaction but more commonly, they show up as chronic symptoms like eczema.
Katie: That makes sense. Okay. So, another skin issue that is less common, thankfully, but that I know some people who struggle with. In fact, a friend of mine recently had a tough time in her pregnancy with melasma or that darkening of the skin. It can happen for pregnant women. Do you have any insight onto what causes this or things that maybe they can do to help reduce it?
Dr. Trevor: Well it does seem that with…there’s really no known cause for melasma. But we do know that with pregnancy, the hormone changes that occur increase melanin production which melanin is the pigmentation. And so, it’s usually a combination of genetic factors as well as changes in hormones and sun exposure. So, what people can do is, you know, make sure you use really good sunblock on your face, especially if you’re pregnant, and it’ll help prevent it or it’ll help keep it from getting worse. Because really, once it happens, it does take some time for that to subside. There are some natural skin lighteners like vitamin C that she can apply, topically, to the face that are, you know, safe to use during pregnancy that can help reduce that hyperpigmentation that occurs, that mask of pregnancy.
And the other time that it, oftentimes, happens is when women are on birth control pills. Because again, we get these big changes in hormones, so that can oftentimes cause that that discoloration along the cheeks that’s known as the mask of pregnancy or melasma. And so for those people, I generally recommend finding a different form of birth control, going off birth control pills and then it usually clears up.
Katie: Gotcha. That makes a lot of sense. Can we talk about some specific skin-damaging ingredients that people might find in their skin skincare products or there are specific ones that we should be on the lookout for that are kind of the worst offenders?
Dr. Trevor: Yeah. Yeah, absolutely. So one thing that we oftentimes are, you know, slathering our kids and ourselves up in the summertime with sunscreen. So one of the main ingredients in sunscreens is oxybenzone. It’s found in many sunscreens. There are other ingredients, too, that that can also be harmful, but this is one of the big ones. And this has been shown, in some research, to be or have hormone-disrupting effects. So we want to be careful with using these kinds of chemicals on our children and ourselves because, especially, with children, their bodies are so small, their livers, you know, their detoxification organs are smaller and they’re rapidly developing and growing. So we want to be, particularly, careful with kids, that we’re not giving them any additional chemical exposures. And I know, as parents, I’ve got three kids myself, we want to protect our kid’s skin from the sun and we put lots of sunscreen. But unfortunately, that’s one of the ingredients is in most of these.
So what I would suggest is that for people to get rid of those sunscreens and instead look for…because we still want to use sunblock. We still want to protect our skin and that of our precious children. So using ones that have zinc oxide, those are going to be more of a natural barrier, sunblock than oxybenzone. So, you could actually find out, it used to be that, you can only find them in a really pasty form. And so people would end up with, like, you know, the streaks on your nose, on your cheeks. But now, we can get zinc oxides in better forms where it spreads evenly and it’s easy to use on children.
I would just have people steer clear of the spray sunscreens as well because what happens is that goes into the air and then we, our children breathe that in and the particles, especially, if they’re nano-sized particles, tiny, little microparticles, even those zinc oxide and titanium dioxide tiny, little particles, they can get trapped inside the lungs and there are concerns about the safety of that. So just sticking with zinc oxide and doing, you know, applying it topically, you know, just as a cream.
And then another big one is a fragrance that is in so many personal care products. And unfortunately, fragrance is a broad, wide term where a lot of chemicals can be hidden under that without having to be put on the label. So unless it’s natural, such as from pure essential oils, you want to stay away from a skincare products that say fragrance. So those are two. I can keep going on these if you want. But I just wanted to give a couple as an example.
Katie: Awesome. Are there any ingredients that you would specifically look for or that would be maybe a good indicator that it’s naturally acidic?
Dr. Trevor: We did talk about vitamin C, that’s one that I think is good. You know, partly, it depends on what you’re trying to do. I mean, there are certain oils that are particularly beneficial for this skin, like sea buckthorn oil is a nice one for the skin. And, you know, there are a lot of different ingredients that really depends on what you’re trying to do. But you can also make skincare…some things in your own kitchen. I just, I’ve demonstrated this on TV shows and things on how to you can actually, and you probably do some of this, too. How you can just put something up in your blender to make a nice face mask.
And I do this with my daughters. We do a little spa day at home and it’s really fun. Where we do things like putting in…one example is putting avocado and blueberries and some soaked almonds and a little bit of coconut water, and we’ll just put that all in a blender and then it turns into paste, and we put it on our face and let it sit for about 10 minutes and it’s very moisturizing to the skin because of that avocado. And then you can, if you have any leftover, you can actually just turn it into a smoothie. Add some coconut milk and it turns into a smoothie. You can also add some honey in there, too. Honey is great on the skin. Sugar is actually great on the skin, too. And you put that in a mask, it as acts as a nice natural exfoliate on the skin and skin really likes sugar and responds well to that, as well as honey. Now, of course, internally, it’s a different story. But yeah, there’re some great things you can…kitchen.
Katie: That’s awesome. Well, can you leave us with a few of your best, just general skin care tips whether they’re DIY or…You mentioned some great ones just now, but just kind of general skin care tips and I’ll make sure, I think you’ve got a post on a lot of these, and I’ll link to them as well.
Dr. Trevor: Yeah. Great. And again, it’s really a two-step approach. It’s that internal approach as well as the external approach to addressing our skin. And one of the things I wanted to mention as I know we’ve talked a lot about aging and the aging skin and wrinkles. And I think one of the things that we want to do is realize that aging isn’t something we have to fight. That we’re all getting older and it’s okay. That when we have wrinkles it’s, you know, we don’t want to get them any earlier than we should and we don’t want to look older than we are.
But there are a sign that, you know, we’ve been living life and experiencing things and smiling and laughing and that’s what causes those wrinkles. So, I don’t think that there’s something we should cover up and hide. But, you know, we wanna do everything we can internally and externally to make sure that we have a glow, that we have a clear, clean, glowing skin. So things like avoiding the triggers that we talked about such as dairy products and sugar. Particularly, if you have acne-prone skin or eczema-prone skin and looking at the toxins in your chemicals, in your skincare products, stand and get educated on that.
I’ve got blogs on my website about the top 10 ingredients to look for in skincare products that you wanna avoid. And then top seven foods and worst foods to be eating for our skin. You also want to create balance and we want to, I talked about pH balance and we want a mildly acidic environment on the skin. And then internally, we want more of a higher and alkaline environment, internally, to help with our health. And also, creating balance with our hormones is important. And our gut bacteria as well as our skin microbiome. Reducing inflammation is really important for the skin on the outside. That means looking at the ingredients and then also addressing gut issues and foods that increase inflammation. So you want to reduce inflammation. And detoxification is really important, externally, as well as internally. So we want to detox the skin on the outside. And our skin is one of our organs of detoxification, of elimination. Well, we sweat through the skin. So we want to take good care of our skin so we can have good detoxification.
And then the final thing is to nourish. We want to nourish inside and out. Some of the same nutrients that nourish our bodies on the inside can also help, topically, when we put them on the outside, so inside and outside nourishment. And I do have an e-book called “Glowing Skin From Within,” it’s available on Amazon as well as for people who’ve signed up for my Glowing Skin Summit, it’s free when people register. So there’s lots of great information on there on that, the top best and worst foods, as well as the big triggers that lead to problems with skin.
Katie: Awesome. Thank you so much and I will include a list of all these as well, but where can people find you online?
Dr. Trevor: Yeah. So on my website, drtrevorcates.com so, drtrevorcates.com. And then on my website on the home page, there’s a skin quiz and that’s completely free, you can just take the quiz and I’ll give you some great suggestions on what you can start doing to improve your skin and how…so you can have glowing skin and vibrant health.
Katie: Awesome. Dr. Trevor, you are a wealth of knowledge. Thank you so much for being here.
Dr. Trevor: Thank you. It’s great being here, Katie.
Katie: And thank you so much for listening to this episode of the “Wellness Mama” podcast. If you enjoyed this episode or any past episodes, I would be really appreciative if you could go to iTunes and leave an honest rating or review since that helps other people find this podcast and listen to it as well.
Also, if you’d like to get my “Seven simple steps for healthier families,” guide plus my QuickStart guide, and a free week of meal plans, head on over to wellnessmama.com and enter your email and I’ll send them to you right away.
Also, another just a gracious thank you to Vital Proteins, gelatin, and collagen powders. They are the sponsor of this podcast and they make it possible for me to keep bringing these episodes each week and getting them edited and out on time. And they have two main products that are just incredible, I use them both. And in fact, gelatin is one of my favorite skin ingredients, and it’s something I take for use in some form, pretty much every day. And I really believe that that has helped me not age quickly at all, even with all of pregnancies and babies I have had.
And they have two different products. There’s some confusion about them, usually. So to break it down, they have a green-red one that’s a collagen protein which is a Jelly-some and that’s the type that will gel in liquids. So if you’re trying to make marshmallows or gummy vitamins or fruit snacks, that will be the one to get. The blue one, collagen peptides, do not gel but they’re easy to mix into foods and drinks and they will clump. So that’s perfect for mixing into coffee or tea or smoothies or soups or anything you want to just sneak extra gelatin and get the benefits but without the texture and the taste of the jelly.
And all of their gelatin and collagen powders are pasteurized and, just, they’re really good high-quality products, and our family uses them daily. And if you’d like to find out more about them, go to wellnesmama.com/go/gelatin. Thanks, as always, for listening. And have a healthy week.
Also, please leave an honest rating and review of the podcast on iTunes. Rankings and reviews really matter in the rankings of my podcast and I greatly appreciate every review and read each one.
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Thanks to Vital Proteins for sponsoring this episode of the Wellness Mama podcast. I use gelatin and collagen powder daily in cooking, baking, smoothies, hot drinks and as a supplement. Collagen helps reduce wrinkles and improve skin health, so this may be the reason that I often hear “You look too young to have five kids!” If you’ve never tried gelatin or collagen, I definitely recommend checking our Vital Proteins! Use the code VPWM10 to get a 10% discount off your order!
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