Aging skin is an issue we all have to face throughout the course of our lives. Despite the fact that our skin naturally undergoes transformations every decade (resulting in various changes), fortunately we aren’t at the mercy of unknown forces. While we can’t expect to have the flawless skin of a newborn baby, the good news is that we can help stave of the process of aging skin through proper techniques and using the right skin care products.
Featured here are the 5 avoidable causes of aging skin, and the ways you can minimize the on-set of fine lines and wrinkles through preventative and proactive treatments.
5 Avoidable Causes of Aging Skin
Every Dermatologist will tell you to wear sunscreen everyday, regardless if it’s sunny out or not. And while you might be under the misconception that sun damage only results in a sunburn, that’s far from the truth.
The harmful rays of the sun cause a myriad of skin problems, including skin cancer, sunspots, hyper-pigmentation, fine lines and wrinkles. Essentially, the more you expose your skin to the sun, the greater your chances are for developing any of these skin problems. A primary reason why the sun creates wrinkles is because it breaks down the collagen in your skin.
If you want to minimize the effects of aging skin, or you simply want to help prevent skin cancer from developing, it’s critically important that you wear at least SPF 30 everyday, even if you plan on staying indoors most of the day.
Toxins & Pollutants
Whether you’re facing city smog or eating processed foods, toxins and pollutants (both internal and external) speed up the skin aging process. While we can’t snap our fingers and simply relocate, we can take steps in reducing the amount of toxins in our bodies and our immediate environments.
Place live plants in your home and work place to help boost the circulation of oxygen in your space. In addition, using an electric Air Purifier to help clean the air in your living environment is also a way to create a more healthful space.
When it comes to internal toxins, eating processed and chemically-produced foods and beverages makes it more challenging for your organs to eliminate toxins. Opt for (organic) fruits and vegetables, increase your intake of water (which also help minimize dehydration, another cause of skin aging), and add antioxidant-rich foods and beverages (like Green Tea) to your diet (to fight free radicals).
While most women love anything sugary, the truth is, this addictive little ingredient does more than make our waistlines grow. Sugar rapidly increases skin aging due to a process known as glycation.
“When you have sugar molecules in your system, they bombard the body’s cells like a meteor shower—glomming onto fats and proteins in a process known as glycation. The proteins in skin most prone to glycation are the same ones that make a youthful complexion so plump and springy—collagen and elastin. When those proteins hook up with renegade sugars, they become discolored, weak, and less supple; this shows up on the skin’s surface as wrinkles, sagginess, and a loss of radiance.” [Source: Elle Magazine]
So put down that donut, and opt for a healthy alternative instead. Your figure and your skin will thank you in the long-run for it!
Have you ever noticed that certain people develop deep wrinkles in their forehead as they age? Repeated facial expressions result in fissures and lines since the muscles under the surface of the skin continue to be used. That’s why mental stress (whether it be in the form of anxiety, worry, or frustration) can speed-up the aging skin process.
Regularly spending time to meditate, clear your mind, and be peaceful helps you stay calm and centered throughout your daily activities, even when you face challenging situations. By focusing on relaxing your mind and body, you naturally relax your muscles (including your facial muscles), which means wrinkles have less of a chance of developing.
Aside from causing dehydration (resulting in dry, dull skin), most types of alcohol can increase aging skin. Although Red Wine can actually help minimize aging skin (since it’s high in antioxidants), the truth is that most alcohol (such as hard liquor) do the opposite.
“Specifically, alcohol can have a huge negative impact on your vitamin A level, which is a very important antioxidant for your skin/body and it is vital in the regeneration of new cells. Vitamin A is also extremely important in the production of collagen. When you have lower amounts of collagen, you lose elasticity in your skin. Collagen and elasticity are what keep your skin supple, taut and looking young. By drinking in excess, you actually speed up the aging process because you are already losing collagen and elasticity as you age.” [Source: Dr. Oz]
While we might not be able to prevent inevitable changes in our skin (due to the natural aging process), we can help minimize aging skin by taking preventative measures, like the ones listed above.
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