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The Younger Skin Diet: Rajani Katta, MD, on PYP 428

I think that having healthy, attractive skin is probably a lot more motivating to most people than a healthy heart, or liver, or pancreas. I mean, those organs are great and all, and important, but they're so, well, hidden.

Out of sight and out of mind, at least until they malfunction.

Skin, on the other hand – it's staring us in the face all day long. Hell, it is our face. And when our skin feels dry and paper, or sags, or gets spots and wrinkles, we don't like that one bit.

So the good news and the bad news is – our lifestyles can significantly affect the health of our skin. Diet, coping with stress, sleep quality – all these can fast forward aging, or slow it down, depending on our choices.

Rajani Katta, MD, is a dermatologist and professor at the Baylor College of Medicine, and the author of Glow: The Dermatologist's Guide to a Whole Foods Younger Skin Diet. On today's podcast, we talk about the evidence connecting diet and lifestyle to radiant, healthy skin.

When I was a kid, everyone knew that too much chocolate caused acne.

Until science said that was a myth, so we stopped believing it.

Except that I still knew that I could dial my pimples up or down, depending on how clean I ate.

So it was good to discover from Dr Katta that those studies on sugar and acne were poorly done, with a small sample size, very little difference between experimental and control protocols, and short-term outcome measures.

I mean, even as we were told that food didn't affect skin, we were also told all about allergic reactions of the skin to trigger foods. So which was true: link, or no link?

In our conversation, I ask lots of really basic questions about the skin, starting with “What is skin?” and “What's it for?” (Basic, right?) And then we dive into the evidence for a certain dietary pattern (whole food, plant-centric, anyone?) to promote healthy skin.

We explore the pathways of damage and premature aging, and discover why high blood sugar and cooked red meat are so damaging to skin.

And even come across evidence that certain foods can render our skin sun-resistant, allowing us to spend more time outdoors without burning.

Dr Katta shares her analysis of claims that some supplements can improve skin health, such as collagen. Spoiler alert – eat plants, avoid red meat and processed carbs, and save your money.

And in perhaps her most memorable line, she reminds us that if we eat a lot of bacon, we'll probably end up looking like bacon.

[spp-transcript]

Enjoy, add your voice to the conversation via the comment box below, and please share – that's how we spread our message and spread our roots.

Links

Dr Katta's website: KattaMD.com

Glow: The Dermatologist's Guide to a Whole Foods Younger Skin Diet

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