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There is a multimillion dollar industry devoted to anti-aging and most of that focus is on the skin. There are serums, lotions and potions to get rid of acne, wrinkles and dark circles. The fact that your skin is a canvas that can paint the picture of your health is often lost in the treating and covering up of undesirable symptoms. But true skin health and that healthy, youthful glow many of us crave is an inside job. Even if a product successfully gets rid of the symptom, the underlying problem will go untreated. It’s not a problem for the companies making the products because they know people will keep buying the product to keep the symptom at bay but don’t you want to get at the real issue?
Your skin is a very visible indicator of your health. It is the largest organ your body has and isn’t just a nice wrapper to put everything else in. It helps take in nutrients, releases toxins and it reflects many things about how well your body is functioning. If you are dehydrated your skin will look dry and flaky, if you are stressed you may see acne and dark circles around your eyes, if you drink too much alcohol or eat too much food you may wake up with a puffy face. If your digestive tract is unhealthy or you have allergies it may show on your skin as eczema, psoriasis or even hives. People who have major illnesses such as hepatitis or cancer will have pale or yellowish tint to their skin.
Smoking is one of the worst things you can do for your health overall and your skin will show it. Studies show that smoking disrupts your body’s ability to break down old skin and replace it with new healthy skin. It also triples your chances of developing skin and other cancers. Kicking the smoking habit is one thing you can do for your health immediately that will have lasting positive effects.
Stress is something we all have in some form in our lives. Learning to manage your stress and decompress regularly will show on your skin. Making sure you get enough rest and quality sleep is important to keep that tired drawn out look off your face. This isn’t always easy but there things you can do to help manage your stress such as yoga, meditation/contemplation, hobbies and leisure time. Schedule them into your life as often as you can and you’ll notice a difference.
It’s not just a matter of what not to do that will dictate how your skin looks, diet and nutrition play a huge part in how healthy your skin actually is. There is a direct correlation between your gut health and your skin health. If you have leaky gut syndrome, an overgrowth of unhealthy bacteria in your intestines or have undiagnosed food sensitivities it can show. It’s important to be aware of what you are putting in your body because it’s what will come out in your skin.
Your skin is constantly renewing itself and it needs the proper nutrients to make those new, healthy skin cells. Every cell of your body is made up of fats, specifically omega- 3 fatty acids that are found in cold water fish and also in olive oil and nuts. If the only fats you consume are in the form of fried foods your skin will eventually show it. You can include these healthy fats in your diet through your food or in high quality nutritional supplements.
A study was done in Australia, Greece and Sweden to see if there was a correlation between diet and the appearance of wrinkles. What it showed was that the people who ate healthy diets high in fruits, vegetables and fish had visibly less wrinkled skin than those that ate diets high in red meat, dairy products and sugars. Fruits and vegetables as well as tea are particularly high in antioxidants which help your body fight the damage of free radicals in your system which can cause cell damage and aging. Getting extra antioxidant support from supplements such as Vitamin E or C can also be a great help.
It’s also important to treat your skin with outward care. Use healthy, natural products on your skin and avoid cleansers, lotions and cosmetics with chemicals and harsh ingredients. There are quite a few companies out there who make skin care products that are organic and safe from damaging chemicals. You can also safely use things like coconut oil as a makeup remover and moisturizer or diluted apple cider vinegar as a toner. Making your own skin care products can not only be fun but can actually save money and nourish your skin healthfully.
The best anti-aging advice is to treat yourself well by having a healthy diet, getting enough rest and exercise and using naturally healthy products both in and on your body. Your skin will have that nice youthful glow without having to keep buying products to cover the symptoms.