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  • your skin any favors,” says Bowe.

    Ideally, you should have a mix of natural probiotics and prebiotics in your diet. Fermented foods like yogurt, kimchi and kombucha are rich in probiotics, while bananas (as unripe as possible), onions, artichokes, garlic and fennel are all great sources of prebiotics. “But most of us also need help from supplements,” says Jules Miller of wellness brand The Nue Co. Look for a probiotic with strains of Lactobacillus and Bifidobacterium and at least a 15 billion bacteria culture count, and take with plenty of water on an empty stomach. Or add a powder that has pro- and prebiotics to a morning smoothie.

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    Is bacteria the key to great skin? By Fiorella Valdesolo

    Bacteria gets a bad rep, but it can transform skin – in a good way. “Over 70% of our immune system is located in our gut lining,” says Nyc derm Dr. Whitney Bowe, an expert on the gut-brain-skin axis. A surplus of harmful bacteria in the gut can break down the lining and aggravate skin conditions that manifest as acne and rosacea. “It is this chronic low-level inflammation that destroys collagen and elastin tissues and leads to premature skin aging,” explains Bowe.

    To counter this, a healthy gut must be populated with a variety of bacteria: probiotics – ‘good’ bacteria to rebalance the gut – and prebiotics, which feed those good bacteria. “Alone, probiotics won’t survive long enough to do you or

    Culture Club

    Bananas, onions, artichokes, garlic and fennel are all Great sources of Prebiotics

    Photograph: Jens Stuart / Trunk Archive

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