Aging is a natural process and its most noticeable outward projection is the appearance of wrinkles and fine lines. Our skin starts aging from the late 20s, but its effects become more apparent as we age. However, there are certain things we do that actually speed up the aging process. An unhealthy lifestyle, stress, processed foods, alcohol, smoking, lack of exercise, and pollution all contribute to premature skin aging.
Before you reach out for the most expensive anti-aging cream out there, why not make some lifestyle changes that can help slow down the effects that this type of aging has on the skin. Here are a few simple ways that can help keep you looking young.
Sun protection is, without doubt, the best way to prevent aging. Collagen and elastin are the two major proteins which make skin elastic, supple, and youthful. Too much of exposure to ultraviolet (UV) rays from the sun can damage your skin, mainly its elastin, and cause a loss of collagen. This, in turn, can lead to wrinkles, dark spots, dryness, rough skin, and sunburn. You can protect your skin by seeking shade, covering up with clothing, and using a broad-spectrum sunscreen, which blocks both types of UV rays, UVA and UVB. Apply sunscreen every day to all areas of the skin that are not covered by clothing.
A diet rich in sugar and refined carbs can dramatically age the skin. Excess sugar, mainly glucose and fructose, bind to collagen and elastin, the two skin protective proteins, and dehydrate them, making them dry and brittle. This process is called advanced glycation end product, AGE for short. Due to glycation, your skin starts to look dull and less vibrant, and loses its elasticity which can lead to early wrinkles and sagging.
Your skin requires the right nutrition to stay young and healthy looking. We are exposed to numerous toxins and chemicals on a daily basis, all of which cause free radical damage in our cells. In order to fight free radical damage and repair cells, we need antioxidants, such as vitamins A, C, E, and the B vitamin biotin. Consume fresh fruit, vegetables, and nuts which are typically high in these antioxidants. Additionally, adequate protein intake is also essential for helping to repair tissue as well as construct new tissue. Also, healthy fats from avocados, walnuts, olive oil etc. help to lubricate the skin internally, leading to more vibrant and radiant skin.
Drink plenty of water
Chronic dehydration is a common cause of sagging skin. Water helps to restore elasticity to the skin and hydrates it on a cellular level. This helps to plump up the skin, reducing fine lines, wrinkles, and sagging. Stay hydrated by sipping water throughout the day.
Smoking is a major contributor to skin aging. Toxic chemicals in smoke reduce blood supply and nourishment to the skin, which damages the collagen and elastin fibers. This makes the skin lose its elasticity and moisture. Smokers are, therefore, more likely to develop dull, deeply wrinkled, and leathery skin than nonsmokers.
Excessive alcohol is bad for skin, and your health in general. Alcohol dehydrates the skin and leads to paleness, dryness, and deepening of wrinkles. Moreover, alcohol is pro-inflammatory and speeds up the aging procedure.
Stress releases hormones like cortisol into the bloodstream, which causes damage to collagen and elastin, the supportive tissue beneath your skin, resulting in thinner and more wrinkled skin. A high level of cortisol also robs your body of required nutrients, such as vitamins B5, B6 and vitamin C, which are all important for immune health, stress reduction, and for healthy glowing skin. Moreover, wrinkles are also formed due to too much creasing of your forehead and facial features, when you are tensed and stressed. Reduce stress by practicing deep breathing exercises, yoga, meditating, exercising etc.
Sleep deprivation is one of the leading causes of premature aging of the skin. During the day, skin cells fight against the damage caused by stressors, like UV rays and pollution. Sleep is vital because stress hormones drop to normal levels at night, giving skin cells time to repair and rejuvenate. Moreover, when you don’t get sufficient sleep, the body produces excess cortisol, a hormone that breaks down skin cells. With enough sleep you produce more HGH (human growth hormone), which helps skin remain thick, more elastic and less likely to wrinkle, helping you maintain more youthful skin.
Avoid too many cosmetics
Avoid using a large number of cosmetics. The more skin care products you use, the higher the risk of skin irritation. Use the essentials and do not mix all the products together. Some cosmetics contain chemicals that damage your gentle skin causing it to be more susceptible to infection, dryness, inflammation, acne, and other skin conditions, leading to premature aging and more wrinkles. Make sure your cosmetics contain natural, safe ingredients.
If signs of aging skin are seriously bothering you, you may also want to consider seeing a dermatologist, who could advice you on other products, treatments, or lifestyle changes.
Disclaimer: All material on Hidoc.co is provided for informational purposes only and should not be taken as a substitute for professional medical or health advice. Always seek the advice of your physician for any questions regarding your symptoms or medical condition and before taking any home remedies or supplements.