It Is Really All About Inflammation:
Researchers set out to look at the effect of the skin in creating inflammatory cytokines, and how this affects the rest of the body. Inflammation in the skin may be causing inflammatory disease in other areas of the body. Even though the skin is the largest organ of the body, it is often ignored, making this a new idea.
Could Skin Dysfunction Be A Cause of Age-Related Disease And Could Skin Care Reduce These Diseases
The inflammatory cytokines associated with age-related issues like dementia, osteoporosis, type II diabetes and cardiovascular disease appear to be inducible by skin dysfunction? Researchers found healing the skin decreased the inflammatory cytokines, and may lead to a decrease in these, and other age-related diseases.
The Mice Study
In a study of aged mice, it was demonstrated that skin dysfunction accounted for much of the age-related elevations in circulating cytokine levels. They additionally showed improvement of the skin function was able to reduce circulating cytokine levels.
The Human Study
Thirty three aged humans were treated for 30 days with 3 mls of a skin healing emollient that has a record of improving skin function. This study also had controls of aged humans, and young people. They measured inflammatory plasma cytokines IL-1B, IL-6 and TNF alpha at baseline and after treatment.
The study found higher levels of the inflammatory cytokines in the aged people vs. the young people at the start of the study. Applications of the emollient showed better barrier function of the skin, and increased hydration. The levels of inflammatory cytokines improved, with IL-1B and IL-6 normalizing and TNF alpha levels declining substantially.
A clinical trial is to follow this study.
My Take On This
Inflammation Anywhere Can Lead To Chronic Disease
Anything that causes inflammation leads to chronic disease. Inflammation is the number one creator of most disease in our bodies. Anything that can be done to lower the inflammatory level over-all will lead to over-all decrease in many diseases. Everything in our bodies operates like an interconnected multifaceted crystal. Nothing can be done that does not affect the other parts and the body/person as a whole. Of course decreasing inflammation in the skin, or the gut, or the gums, or even inflammatory thoughts will decrease overall inflammation, and lead to decreased disease. We do have to ask the question however, what is causing the skin dysfunction.
Factors Causing Skin Issues Are Multiple
Keep in mind that skin issues can originate from issues in the environment (everything outside of the skin) as well as issues coming from inside of us (mind, emotional, body, spirit).
The Skin Is Much More Than A Barrier
As a society, we are beginning to realize that skin can affect the rest of the body. Funny thing is that that many people tend to only see it as a barrier to the outside world. Something that holds the muscles and guts in. However, the skin is an integral part of our body, that similar to our gut, keeps some things out, and lets other things in. It also releases things such as toxins to the outside of our body. It is a miracle how it receives the photons from the sun and uses it to make vitamin D. It assists in temperature regulation, evaporation, immune defense, and absorption of both the good, and the bad from the environment. Our body is a divine mechanism interconnected through our skin (as well as other organs of perception) to nature. As one of our largest organs of sensation, it is through our skin that we perceive much the world has to share with us.
Our skin has much more going on than we know about!