Have you Met the Many Functions of Your Skin?

Have you Met the Many Functions of Your Skin?

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Moments of RestWhat part of the body regulates body temperature, synthesizes Vitamin D when exposed to sunlight, protects against pollutants, airborne toxins and bacteria, and acts as a waste elimination portal?

If you answered with, My Skin, you’d be right! It isn’t uncommon for various organs in the body to have multiple functions, and the largest organ of the body has all these functions!

In addition, your skin protects you from various surfaces you come into contact with, and contains nerve endings that tell you what type of surface and it’s temperature, that you’ve touched. We call this, the sense of touch, one of the primary 5 senses. It is through the sense of touch that we can tell if something is too hot to pick up, too thorny to grasp, too slippery to hang onto, fluffy, soft, etc.

emergenciesDifferent areas of the body contain skin with varying features as well. The skin on your fingertips contain ridges that help you grip things. If you dip the pad of your finger tip in ink and press it to paper, you obtain what we call a “finger print” and no two finger prints are alike! Ever! Just like snowflakes, each one is different and unique, just the way God made you.

If we regularly come into contact with rough material, our hands can develop callouses. These callouses protect the body from the rough material and can aid in managing that material easier than if we don’t have them. Guitar-players build up callouses that help them press the strings on the fret of the guitar. Our feet develop callouses either from the footwear we put on, or the ground we traverse (or both), and those callouses too, protect the body from the foot’s surroundings, allowing for easier travel over that terrain or in that footgear.

straight pathRemoving your walking callouses makes the idea of long treks painful, because the protective measure has been removed. Every spring, I talk about the need to “toughen up my feet again”, as we head out on foraging hikes. Once I have my callouses back, those hikes are rather enjoyable. Soft feet will soon become a problem in areas where the cost of gasoline gets so prohibitive that your only option is to put on your sneakers and step out the door an hour earlier than planned to reach your destination in time.

Walking is a great form of moderate exercise, and choosing to walk rather than drive doesn’t merely save money at the pump, but it aids in overall physical health as well. One of those benefits is for your skin. Exercise gets the blood moving, which is why your cheeks look more rosy after a long walk or 30min or more of exertion. More blood to the skin surface facilitates the many other jobs that your skin has in the protection and maintenance of body function.

The concept of “beautiful feet” should change to include the definition of someone unafraid to tackle life on foot because their skin reflects their ability to do life away from “the system”.

Healthy, functional skin doesn’t just happen by chance however. It needs to be fed, looked after, and managed wisely. We’ll explore some of that for the month of May in my group: Natural Health God’s Way.

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