My clinical experience with supplements to improve skin health is empirical. I work in an affluent area of East Yorkshire, yet the number of my clients that are: a) dedicated enough to adjust their lifestyle and food choices and b) able to invest in a skin supplement are limited. They get results when compliant.
Having reviewed the impact of diet on acne (link to the publication), I strongly believe diet has an impact on inflammatory skin conditions – and clinically I see an improvement when my clients stick to these dietary recommendations every day.
In terms of supplements, I used to recommend Oenobiol Pure Skin (no longer available) and any probiotics with diverse bacterial species, however, Symprove has proven to work best for my clients. Symprove is a water-based multi-strain supplement that contains 4 unique strains of live activated bacteria, they have trialled the supplement at UCL. The strains include: L. rhamnosus, E. faecium, L. acidophilus, and L. plantarum. Normally a healthy gut would already contain all four of these, however when it doesn’t, it can soon become unbalanced.
In my view, the gut in inflammatory skin conditions is unbalanced. My hypothesis agrees with Whitney P Bowe, et al. Gut Pathog. 2011;3:1-1.
- Psychological stress alone [or in combination with high fat diet and/or processed comfort foods devoid of fiber] cause alterations to gut motility and microbiota profile. Loss of normal microbial biofilm causes intestinal permeability and endotoxins gain systemic access, increasing inflammation and oxidative stress, elevating substance P and decreasing insulin sensitivity.
- In those genetically susceptible to acne vulgaris, this cascade increases the likelihood of excess sebum production, exacerbations in acne and additional psychological distress. Both probiotics and antimicrobials may play a role in cutting off this cycle at the gut level.
I work with my clients to edit their lifestyle: enhance their ability to relax, optimise diet and design a personalised skincare routine. Consumers should have choices. Acne/rosacea impact greatly in people’s self-esteem, are visible and, therefore, improvement can be assessed easier than in anti-ageing.
What My Clients Said About Symprove:
- I would say Symprove has had the biggest single effect on my skin. My skin is significantly calmer, clearer and less sensitive. It’s definitely worth the cost and the pungent taste! Easy to take, easy to store. AD (2016)
- The benefits of Symprove: it improved my skin and most certainly helped my IBS symptoms! The down sides to the product are definitely the taste but also the fact you have to keep it in the fridge – this is more difficult if you travel a lot. It also isn’t great having to drink it before you have anything else to eat or drink in the morning. I would, however, use this product again! It is expensive but I don’t think it is something you need to take forever, and therefore, is a one-off as and when you need it. AM (2016)
Clinical Results supersede inconvenience – yet, Symprove would benefit from R&D investment – in terms of ease of use, lower cost and clinical evidence in inflammatory skin conditions.
New anti-ageing supplements & foods are entering the market, next to the tried&tested evidence-based staples [Imedeen; Unilever Strength Within Anti-Wrinkle Supplement]. These have caught my attention and when I feel I understand the offering & evidence – beyond the words of impressionable bloggers – I will introduce them to my clients: Huel, Gold Collagen, Ingenious Beauty, Skinade, Lumity..
Feel free to subscribe to this BLOG to learn more. I would like to appeal to supplement manufacturers to contact me for insights, case studies and pilot trials.