Has Thanksgiving ever caused your skin to flare up? Rich foods, family drama and late nights – those things can definitely cause your acne to flare. But wait – before you brace yourself for all those holiday break-outs, one small shift may seriously change everything.
The real reason behind Thanksgiving can actually help you to clear your skin – gratitude.
Every major religion and culture in the world has incorporated gratitude into their philosophy in one way or another, and this is because gratitude is the most powerful emotion we experience. Period. Gratitude has the power to increase happiness, optimism, and willpower – and decrease depression and anxiety. It is a mental and emotional tonic.
Science is now catching up with this ancient wisdom, and we now know exactly how gratitude changes our brain, and how it can lead to better health, happiness and yes, clear skin.
How does gratitude affect the brain?
Gratitude affects two main areas of the brain: the hypothalamus and the ventral tegmental area.
The hypothalamus is the part of the brain where the stress response starts and gratitude has been shown to regulate the hypothalamus and reduce stress levels.
The ventral tegmental area of the brain regulates the reward circuitry in the brain, which means that gratitude can increase our feelings of pleasure.
How does gratitude balance the body and help clear the skin?
Stress triggers three different physiological pathways that lead to acne. This is incredibly significant – and it means that stress is one of the key factors in acne pathogenesis.
When the hypothalamus is regulated by gratitude, the stress response is calmed and the pathways that lead to acne are calmed. This translates into a significant reduction in acne.
In addition, acne patients have higher levels of depression and anxiety. When gratitude regulates the ventral tegmental area, feelings of pleasure are increased, which can counter both depression and anxiety. This regulates the neurotransmitters in the body, which can help reduce acne.
How do you practice gratitude?
In turns out that establishing a gratitude practice is one the simplest, most effective ways to affect our health and happiness. Based on research results, it is dead simple:
- Each day, write down three things that you are grateful for.
- Do this for 21 consecutive days.
- Your brain will start to re-wire itself for less stress and more happiness.
Gratitude is real, and it is powerful. I challenge you to start your gratitude practice today, and you can start by simply writing three things that you are grateful for in the comments. And check my Instagram account daily – I am going to be encouraging you to keep practicing gratitude for the next 21 days and then we can connect in 3 weeks to see how gratitude has changed your life. Chances are you will be astounded!
I am so grateful to each and every one of my patients and followers. I thank you for entrusting me to help guide you on your clear skin journey, and for sharing all your highs and lows as we go through this human experience together.
So grateful for you. xoxo