Gut-Skin Connection – How Gut Microbiota Affects the Skin

Laura Ann Villanueva - Eat Your Nutrition

When the bacteria in your gut goes out of balance, your skin shows its effects. That is why I am such a big believer that beauty begins with proper nutrition. As more and more people understand gut health, the gut-skin axis connection is becoming a more popular topic recently. Exploring the connections between leaky gut and skin rash is also important in the health of our skin. How can gut health contribute to acne?

We truly are what we eat. This manifests in what type of skin we present to the world. If our gut health is out of whack, you might see redness, bumpiness, or general sallowness to the skin.

Laura Villanueva, holistic nutritionist, helps teach others about health and acne skin connection.

Gut-Skin Axis Connection: Health and Acne

Gut inflammation can lead to skin inflammation. Above all, if we maintain proper balance in our gut health, we can experience glowy, dewy, smooth, and plump skin. Gut-skin connection can definitely affect acne within certain individuals.

Good Gut Health = Radiant Glowing Skin

Gut health is linked to skin issues such as eczema, rosacea, and acne. Have you or someone you know suffered from eczema, rosacea, acne, atopic dermatitis, or any other skin issues? Did you know that these inflammatory skin problems can be the direct result of your gut microbiome being unbalanced? So, what is the gut-skin connection exactly?

Natural skin care products can help acne and gut health with the gut-skin connection.

Gut-Skin Axis Connection

You might have heard the term gut-skin axis before. If you haven’t, let me explain. Your skin’s barrier is your outside defense against pathogenic bacteria. This is your body’s first line of defense. Within your body, your gut has the same role of defense against harmful agents. Oftentimes when your gut is inflamed, your skin will also become inflamed. A disruption in the intestinal barrier results in a feedback loop, allowing the penetration of poorly digested food, microbes, and toxins into the circulation to reach target tissue, including the skin, where they trigger Th2 immune responses, resulting in further tissue damage (1,Β 2).

The gut-skin axis refers to the relationship between the gastrointestinal (GI) tract and the skin. It is important to understand how this axis works, to optimize your health. The gut-skin axis is a major pathway for inflammation and disease transmission. The gut and skin enjoy constant dialogue via what has become known as the gut-skin axis. It’s important to address gut health to improve skin health. Symptoms of gut health issues can be varied, but the skin is often a great barometer for what’s going on inside the gut. Disorders of the gut-skin axis can lead to many health problems, including allergies, asthma, psoriasis, Crohn’s disease, ulcerative colitis, and more.

Leaky Gut and Skin Rash

The food you eat directly can either fuel you properly or create digestive disturbances, such as leaky gut (intestinal permeability), SIBO (small intestinal bacterial overgrowth), candida, dysbiosis and many more. However, the good news is there is help for these conditions. Through the addition of probiotics, prebiotics, and even synbiotics, your gut and skin issues can truly become a thing of the distant past.

Think of your gut as your garden. What happens when you don’t properly nourish the soil and fertilize your garden? You lack the proper nutrients and even bacteria to have a flourishing healthy digestive system.

Gut axis can heal your skin with natural products too.

How to Improve Gut Health and Heal Your Skin?

The gut is the largest and most complex organ in the body. It also has the most bacteria, and the most diverse immune system. This makes the gut a major player in the body’s immune system. If you reduce inflammation within the body, you can improve your gut health, including your skin health.

There are many ways to improve gut health, including incorporating a fiber-rich, nutrient-dense diet and supporting mental and emotional wellness. To heal the skin, it’s essential that you first heal the gut. Gut health is key to overall health and well-being. Gut bacteria play an important role in gut function, both good and bad.

Poor gut health can lead to various problems, including:

How to Heal The Gut and Improve Your Skin?

Acne and gut health.

Ways to Improve Gut Health Naturally

This question asks how you can heal your gut and improve your skin. Gut health has a huge impact on the appearance of skin and hair, so healing up your gut is the first step to improving these areas. A common way of doing this is taking a probiotic, but let’s explore more areas of change in addition to probiotics.


A high-fiber diet is beneficial to gut health and can improve skin quality. There is also evidence that avoiding dairy, sugar, gluten and alcohol can benefit skin and gut health. But don’t fret, you can learn how to heal the gut with food. You can still eat delicious foods while avoiding those trigger foods. First, start by adding healthier proteins and fats. Increase your leafy greens and cruciferous vegetable intake, which will help with fiber intake, but also benefit you with all the phytonutrients.

Kefir and probiotics are another great way to heal the gut. Even though kefir is a dairy product, it is fermented and can have benefits for the skin. Kefir is a fermented dairy product that contains healthy bacteria, which can be beneficial for your gut health and skin. Probiotics are also found in yogurt, kombucha, sauerkraut and kefir. These foods can help heal the gut lining and keep it strong. Evidence has shown that subjects who drank kefir for eight weeks showed significant improvement in skin barrier function.

Gut skin axis connection can be helped through diet changes like fresh fruit.


Take supplements – if you’re not getting the nutrients your body needs from food, consider taking a supplement to help support gut health. Some great options include probiotics and prebiotics.

Probiotics are good for your gut and skin health. Probiotics can reduce inflammation and irritation on the skin. Certain skin conditions can be treated with probiotics orally or topically. The immune system in the body can become stronger due to the addition of probiotics, affecting the effects surrounding the immune function and eczema. So it is believed that the addition of supplemental probiotics or probiotics naturally occurring in foods can be beneficial for eczema sufferers.

Lifestyle changes improve the gut.


Inner and outer health are linked. Exercise regularly – not only will it help keep your body functioning optimally, but regular exercise also helps promote healthy gut bacteria. Diet, fitness, and sleep are key to good skin health. Try to avoid excessive use of antibiotics. Antibiotics can be used for too long and may cause harm to the gut microbiome. Sometimes you can’t avoid taking an antibiotic, and in those extreme instances, ensure you are also supporting a healthy balance of good bacteria. Eat probiotic rich foods like kefir, yogurt, and sauerkraut.

My Top 5 Foods to Nourish & Protect the Gut – Skin Axis Connection


If you would like to begin helping your gut-skin connection, consider trying some of my wholesome delicious gut friendly recipes. These recipes focus on providing relief from digestive distress by improving digestion, regulating blood sugar levels, and infusing your body with nutrients.

Interested in Improving Your Gut Health?

If you are serious about finally improving your gut health, consider taking my Restore Your Gut Health program. It’s an 8-week online healthy eating program designed to help you take control of your gut health and acne issues once and for all. You can learn to nourish your body with foods to fuel you, without wrecking havoc on your acne prone skin and the gut-skin connection. Check it out here.


Let’s Discuss Leaky Gut and the Skin Rash Connection!

I would love to hear your experience with leaky gut connection and skin rash. Did you try any lifestyle modifications I mentioned above to help your skin’s health? Have you noticed any improvement in your acne when you take care of your gut health?

You can also connect with meΒ @Eat_Your_NutritionΒ on Instagram. I love seeing your photos. #EatYourNutrition #LauraVillanueva


  1. Salem I, Ramser A, Isham N, Ghannoum MA. The Gut Microbiome as a Major Regulator of the Gut-Skin Axis. Front Microbiol. 2018;9:1459. Published 2018 Jul 10. doi:10.3389/fmicb.2018.01459
  2. Purchiaroni F, Tortora A, Gabrielli M, Bertucci F, Gigante G, Ianiro G, Ojetti V, Scarpellini E, Gasbarrini A. The role of intestinal microbiota and the immune system. Eur Rev Med Pharmacol Sci. 2013 Feb;17(3):323-33. PMID: 23426535.

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Certified holistic nutritionist, nutrition and wellness author, weight and gut health specialist. I teach women how to discover effective ways to become the healthiest version of themselves.

My refreshing new approach to nutrition and healthy living has inspired many to make positive healthy lifestyle changes. The holistic nutrition blog focuses on the importance of a balanced lifestyle. Holistic living addresses the whole person's lifestyle, including physical, mental, social, and spiritual.

You can achieve a healthy gut, learn how to restore healthy gut flora by learning my healthy nutrition tips on my gut health holistic nutrition blog, recipes, and follow my healthy gut diet plans, guides, and programs. 

Holistic Nutritionist, Health & Wellness Coach & Gut Health Nutritionist

Hi, I'm Laura.
Your Healthy Gut Nutritionist!

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