Pregnancy and ‘the glow’ are expected to occur simultaneously. But what happens if your pregnancy occurs without the arrival of a glow- and all you have to show for the changes are nausea and a side of skin flare? Fertility Naturopath Alice Flannery specialises in skin, gut, hormone and digestive health and spills the tea on what to expect from your skin during reproductive health changes, and how to best support the fluctuations holistically.
Which skin conditions present in pregnancy?
Common skin conditions that may present during pregnancy include hormonal acne, dehydrated skin, hyperpigmentation, eczema and perioral dermatitis flare ups.
What causes skin issues to flare in pregnancy?
Many skin issues in pregnancy are simply caused by large fluctuations in hormones. During pregnancy many women experience increased sensitivity and reactions to skincare products. Red, itchy and irritated skin is common in pregnancy.
Keeping your topical regime simple and supporting the skin barrier health, while supporting your skin from the inside out is a good place to start. Consider applying the following too:
1. Stay hydrated!
Ensure adequate water intake and herbal teas to support hydration of the skin.
2. Include Omega 3 fatty acids – eating high quality fats to support hormone production, foetal health and skin health.
Food sources include: avocado, oily fish, nuts & seeds, olive oil
3. Incorporate Zinc – this is an essential skin nutrient.
Food sources include: pumpkin seeds, legumes, meat
4. Remember your B vitamins – these are essential for skin health and barrier function, while also preventing trans-epidermal water loss
Food sources include: dark leafy greens, whole grains, eggs
5. Work towards an antioxidant rich diet
6. Food sources includes: brightly coloured fruit & vegetables
7. Remember Vitamin C – this is important for skin texture and healing
Food sources include: kiwi fruit, papaya, strawberries, capsicum, citrus fruits
How can a prenatal vitamin support healthy skin in pregnancy?
A high quality prenatal vitamin contains a broad spectrum of vitamins and minerals that are essential for not only a growing baby, but also overall health. This extends to skin health, as nutrients such as zinc, B vitamins, vitamin C & selenium are crucial for skin appearance and integrity.