Here at KOSSMA, we are all about low-PUFA, botanical, and hormone friendly tallow based skincare, but there is another side to the coin when it comes to skin, acne and aging: endotoxin.

What is endotoxin and how does it affect the skin? 

Ray Peat PhD states that “endotoxin is a ubiquitous and chronic stressor.” In a nutshell, endotoxin is a part of the cell wall barrier in common intestinal bacteria. When endotoxin is absorbed through the intestine wall it can cause a lot of stress on our bodies. 

Absorption of bacterial endotoxin can cause... 

  1. Excess estrogen
  2. Acne
  3. Excess serotonin
  4. Premature aging 
  5. Unnecessary excitation of cells
  6. Endocrine disorders
  7. Inflammation
  8. Stress to the liver
  9. Increase of free radical nitric oxide production
  10. Immune system response
  11. Hormonal imbalances
  12. Impaired mitochondria energy production

& likely much more to be acknowledged when you do your own research (recommended reading & references linked below). What is clear is that endotoxin can exacerbate aging, acne and other skin conditions.

Functional Performance Systems shares an abundance of research from Ray Peat PhD on endotoxin. Read more here

Sounds yucky and certainly unwelcome, but do not fret. Your body does some magical things to counteract the effects and this article will discuss several ways you can go one step further to keeping endotoxin and its harm at a minimum. Your skin can radiate agelessly from the inside out. 

EastWest Healing does an excellent job explaining more about endotoxin and how it can affect our health. Read more here

Besides offering the world's first-ever low-PUFA, fully saturated, and botanical skincare line, KOSSMA is on a mission to strengthen the relationship you have with your health.  


We know that maintaining skin health is a two-fold process. It involves both what we put in our bodies and what we put on our bodies.

Related Articles on Skin Health

What is PUFA? & How it Negatively Affects Your Skin

The Surprising Connection Between Your Skin and Your Hormones

How to Avoid Pesky Endocrine Disruptors In Your Skincare


If endotoxin can be caused by stress, then *how do we even* in this world? 

It makes sense to focus on stress reduction in all parts of life, but very few focus on the physiological stress that can be entangled with emotional, mental, environmental, or even physical stress.

Our bodies’ equilibrium can be thrown off in a matter of moments by any kind of stress. How we come back into equilibrium is what’s important. We can do this through diet, exercise, self care, connecting with others, and yes- keeping a healthy hormonal balance. One is not without the other. 

The Hormonal Response to Endotoxin


In our previous article we discussed how the skin can be affected by excess estrogen. Read more here


With the connection between our skin and our hormones in mind, Peat’s research also tells us: 


  • Endotoxin can increase estrogen levels and excess estrogen can cause accelerated aging.


  • Endotoxin causes release of serotonin in the intestine. Serotonin mediates stress and inflammation. It can also impair circulation under stressful circumstances. This can prevent proper mitochondrial activity that keeps our cells lively. 


  • When endotoxin encounters carrageenan (a “natural” thickening additive), inflammation can occur causing even more absorption of bacterial endotoxin.

  • Endotoxin can interfere with hormonal balance. If our hormones are unbalanced, it can show on the surface of the skin as acne, inflammation, rosacea, and accelerated aging.

  • Unstable fats, such as PUFAs, can set up the environment for inflammation.

  • Stress can worsen each of the above. 


Of the many layers involved in skin health (pun intended), also ensuring your skincare products are hormone friendly can support the equilibrium you work so hard to achieve from the inside out. 


Ray Peat Inspired Methods to Reduce Endotoxin 


Raw Carrot - Eating one medium raw carrot every day in between meals has an accumulative effect that can reduce bacterial endotoxin, excess serotonin, and excess estrogen, thus supporting hormonal health. 


Carrot Salad - This recipe takes the benefits of the raw carrot one step further. Be sure to also have this in between meals so it works its magic on its own.
Peel the skin off 1 large carrot or 2 small-medium carrots. 

Shred the carrot(s) into a salad bowl.
Rinse the carrot shreddings in cold water then strain thoroughly. 

Add a dash of salt. 

1 tbsp dressing of melted coconut oil & vinegar or olive oil & vinegar.

Coconut Oil - When used appropriately, this natural antibacterial superfood can prevent leakiness of the intestinal walls, protect the liver from the effects of bacterial endotoxin, and also help reduce the reabsorption of estrogen. 


Support Liver Health - The liver is said to be the master organ of the body. It takes what it needs, leaves what it doesn’t, and stores contents for later use. Liver health is especially important because it also has the job of processing certain hormones effectively.

“We are all subject to a variable degree of inflammatory stimulation from the endotoxin absorbed from the intestine, but a healthy liver normally prevents it from reaching the general circulation, and produces a variety of protective factors.”-Ray Peat, PhD. 


Avoid Carrageenan - Anything that irritates the gut can cause inflammation, serotonin release, and absorption of bacterial endotoxin, but carrageenan in particular can cause greater inflammation.

Healthy aging is possible when we better understand how our hormones are affected by our environment. Each of these methods provide an opportunity to further support your outward appearance by creating balanced hormones each and every day. 

Of the many layers involved in skin health (pun intended), ensuring your skincare products are hormone friendly can further support the equilibrium you work so hard to achieve from the inside out. Reducing any potential exposure to excess estrogen can further protect you from it’s negative interactions with endotoxin in the gut. 

A Note From the Founder of KOSSMA


Stephanie Pena’s Top 3 ways to Reduce Endotoxin

  • Carrot salad 
  • Horseradish - no one ever talks about horseradish, but it's 10x more powerful than carrot salad. To get the most benefit, you can eat it fresh and only have about a tsp per day. 
  • Marmalade and guava - besides these two having powerful antioxidant flavonoids that can do a number of things for our health, they also work to suppress the formation of endotoxin. They work differently than horseradish and carrot salad...(those two can actually kill endotoxin) where marmalade and guava suppress its growth. 
  • So by incorporating both carrot and horseradish with guava and marmalade you can create a super endotoxin killer remedy. 


    Subscribe to KOSSMA’s email list and Stephanie will send you age-defying tonic recipes that can nourish you from the inside out. Here’s to healthy and beautiful skin! 

    Ray Peat PhD, the Benefits of Eating a Raw Carrot - Functional Performance Systems -

    Bowel Toxins Accelerate Aging - Functional Performance Systems -


    Ray Peat on eating a daily carrot - YouTube -


    Ray Peat On Endotoxin, Bowel Transit Time, Liver Detoxification Bile and Estrogen - YouTube -


    Rosacea, Inflammation, and aging: the inefficiency of stress - - 


    Serotonin: Effects in disease, aging and inflammation - -


    Gelatin, stress, longevity - - 

    July 15, 2020 — VISIONS FROM NEPTUNE
    Tags: pufa