How to maintain healthy skin and what causes skin disorders?

How to maintain healthy skin and what causes skin disorders?

The human skin is the body’s largest organ. Almost everyone has experienced skin problem. Some skin diseases are acute that quickly resolve themselves whilst others come and go. Some are chronic and remain even after several years or decades. Common skin diseases are hives, rashes, dermatitis, eczema, pimples/acne, shingles, nervous stimulated skin inflammation and dry skin.

I suggest that if you want to have healthy skin for your life, you need to understand the type of skin you have, what type of body constitution you have, what sort of foods you should eat and avoid for your skin. In this article, I will mention these issues to give you more help with your skin disorder.

1. How does the skin relate to the internal organs?

Chinese medicine believes that although skin diseases are manifested on the skin, their disease origin is related to dysfunctions of certain internal organs. Therefore, the reasons that influence the functions of internal organs has a direct correlation to the health of the skin, all of which can affect the relapse of skin diseases.

The corresponding internal organs relating to the skin’s health are: Lungs, Liver, Large Intestine, Kidneys and Blood circulation (blood “heat” and blood stagnation).

i. Skin and Lung

Chinese medicine considers the lung to dominate the skin and help the pores to open and close. If the lung function becomes disordered it will affect the skin health and will cause the following conditions;
a. When the body is attacked by the external wind and heat (virus) it will affect lung function, the body will not only have sneezing, sore throat, the skin can be itchy or have a rash or shingles.
b. If you smoke for a long time,you not only have a cough and phlegm or disorder of the lung but also have dry skin as well.

ii. Skin, heart and liver

Heart and the liver dominate the body’s circulation and emotions. Any circulation and emotions can affect the skin. This means if the body has a heart and liver function disorder it will cause heat and toxins in the blood, flaring up on the skin causing certain skin problems or making them worse; such as pimples, eczema rashes.

iii. Skin and kidneys

The kidney’s dominate the body’s original yin and yang which is in charge of all stages of the body and skin. If the kidney has a yin and yang disorder it will cause the following skin problems; dry skin, hot flushes (especially around the neck and face) and perspiration.

iv. Skin and the large intestine

The skin and the large intestine are strongly related together. If the body over eats (including hot and spicy foods) and drinks it may cause lots of toxins to build up in the intestine, it will show on the skin. The following skin problems are common; boils, pimples, rash, itchiness; the body may have the following constipation, pungent flatulence, bloating.

2. What should you do if you have a skin disorder.

i. Seek medical attention to get a general check
ii. See you experienced TCM practitioner to find out your body constitution and any disorders with your internal organs like we mentioned above
iii. Have a regular lifestyle and avoid emotional issues. Reduce stress.
iv. Eat regularly. Avoid eating hot and spicy foods, eat less meat and shell-fish
v. Avoid strong sun exposure or chemicals on the skin.

Most skin problems can be fixed if we find out the cause. Remember the skin is the mirror of your health in the body.

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Dr Ping Wang is the clinic founder and senior practitioner of Ping Ming Health. She has over 30 years of experience in traditional Chinese medicine teaching and practice. Dr Ping especially enjoys sharing her knowledge of Chinese medicine through our popular clinic articles, seminars and clinical training of students and practitioners.

  • I’d also add that eating processed foods, and lots of E numbers and preservatives are bad for your body, and that shows in your skin, because your pores are just another way for your body to expel the offending chemicals.

    4 June, 2012