Although you may notice more fine lines and wrinkles over time, skin aging isn’t a process that’s set in stone. In fact, there are several simple things that you can do to slow down the aging process of your skin.
Just like any other organ in your body, your skin requires certain nourishment for optimal health. Beyond drinking a ton of water and a diet that’s rich in fresh fruit and vegetables, the health of your skin comes down to a handful of targeted nutrients that support your skin on multiple levels.
Furthermore, there are specific skin-loving lifestyle habits that you can adopt to protect your skin from some of the external threats of the environment.
And although you may not be aware of it, those cosmetics and treatments you’re paying hundreds of dollars for may be doing more harm than good. The world of anti-aging can be confusing and overwhelming. I know. I’ve researched beauty products extensively my entire life and tried almost every product on the market from creams at the drugstore to the top department stores.
With marketing and misinformation coming at you at all angles, it can be hard to know who exactly to trust, but the truth is that the fundamentals of skin health are simple, non-negotiable and quite straightforward.
If you’re looking for natural ways to promote a youthful complexion, this article will teach you:
- The truth about how your skin ages
- The two factors when it comes to skin aging
- How anti-aging cosmetics may actually be aging your skin faster
- Why being dehydrated makes you look older
- Lifestyle tips to slow the aging process of your skin
- The crucial nutrients that you must have enough of for youthful-looking skin
The Truth About Aging Skin
Why is it that some people look like they’re 25 when they’re 40? While others look like they’re closer to 50 when they’re only 40? There are two different factors at play when it comes to skin and aging: intrinsic aging and extrinsic aging.
Intrinsic aging is the natural process of aging that everyone, no matter how fit and healthy, goes through. Intrinsic aging causes a reduction in the growth and development of skin cells, causing your skin to become thinner, more dry, and less able to pick up nutrients. The lack of nutrient delivery can then translate into insufficient collagen production, along with an inability of your skin to retain bound water.
On the other hand, extrinsic aging is due to external factors that can impact the health of your skin over time. Some of the most common extrinsic insults responsible for aging skin include UV radiation from sun exposure, air pollution, cigarette smoking, and toxins from the environment and personal care products.
In extrinsic aging, your skin becomes damaged due to high levels of oxidative stress and, in some cases, inflammation. While intrinsic aging causes your skin to become more thin and produce fine wrinkles, extrinsic aging causes deeper wrinkles and rougher, thicker skin. In both cases, cells and tissues such as keratinocytes, collagen, and elastin that are responsible for your youthful complexion become damaged.
Beware Of Anti-Aging Cosmetics
If you’re like most people, you’ve likely tried to combat aging skin by grabbing expensive creams, serums, and lotions to help rehydrate and nourish your skin. While these products may make excellent marketing claims, there are a couple of huge red flags that you must be aware of.
#1 Toxic Compounds In Your Personal Care Products
So here’s the kicker; those very products that are claiming to help keep your skin youthful and glowing may contain toxic compounds that, over time, will add to the extrinsic aging process of your skin.
The cosmetic industry is very poorly regulated, which means companies can add all sorts of unwanted ingredients into their products. Why would they do this? Often the reason comes down to cutting costs, whether that means extending the shelf life or using filler ingredients.
The most concerning class of toxins for skin aging is endocrine disruptors such as parabens, benzophenones, bisphenols, and phthalates. These chemicals not only cause increased levels of oxidative stress in your body (and skin), but they also mess with your hormones.
Although you may not realize it, your hormones play a significant role in the health of your skin. Estrogen, in particular, is closely tied to the process of aging skin. As estrogen declines with age, your skin becomes more dry, less elastic, more wrinkles appear, and collagen production plummets. Therefore, when you slather on creams and serums that contain these toxic endocrine-disrupting compounds, you are inadvertently contributing to your skin’s extrinsic aging process.
#2 Skin Health Is An Inside-Out Job
Luckily, several companies out there are doing their part to clean up the cosmetic industry by using all-natural ingredients. When looking for skincare products, always search for companies that are EWG (Environmental Working Group) Certified or at the very least can claim all-natural ingredients.
With that being said, using anti-aging cosmetics will really only get you so far. Although these products can somewhat enhance your skin’s health and hydration, if you really want to get ahead of aging skin, you must start from within.
Nourishing your skin by consuming anti-aging nutrients will allow your body to create more healthy and skin robust cells and tissues. While cosmetics can act as a band-aide, nutrients get right to the root cause of aging.
4 Tips For Healthy, Glowing Skin
#1 Use Sunscreen
It’s estimated that around 80% of extrinsic aging is caused by UV exposure from the sun. While getting enough sunlight is crucial for vitamin D production and helps your body stay on its circadian rhythm, too much sun exposure can result in rough skin and deep wrinkles.
Using sunscreen is one of the simplest ways to avoid excess UV exposure. However, as mentioned above, be sure to use all-natural sunscreens as many brands use chemical compounds as their UV filters.
In addition, several nutrients such as zinc, selenium, carotenoids, vitamin E, and vitamin C can act as a natural sunscreen to protect you from damaging UV rays. As antioxidant compounds, these nutrients absorb UV rays in your skin and help fight off oxidative stress.
#2 Wear Sunglasses and Glasses
This may seem like a simple tip, but it can make a huge difference for those crows feet around your eyes.
As you age, your eyesight will likely start to decline. For some people, this means that they can’t see quite as far, while for others, it’s the close-up objects that give them trouble. Either way, whether near or far, your first instinct when you can’t see something is to squint. Over time, that consistent squinting will result in lines around your eyes that you would rather do without.
The same goes for sunlight; if you find yourself squinting to fight the sun in your eyes, just pop on some sunglasses and give those facial muscles a rest.
#3 Stay Hydrated
Every cell in your body benefits from proper hydration. Having enough water in your cells and tissues allows you to bring nutrients in and pull toxic waste out. Your skin, however, is the only organ that actually displays signs of dehydration visibly.
When your skin is dehydrated, wrinkles and furrows appear deeper, and there is less elasticity and glow to your complexion. On the other hand, hydrated skin is more supple and elastic, and the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles diminishes.
You don’t have to go overboard, but eight glasses of water a day should be your goal to keep your body and skin hydrated and healthy.
#4 Support Your Skin With Vital Nutrients
As mentioned previously, the best way to keep your skin looking youthful and bright is to nourish it from the inside out. When you give your body the building blocks it needs to produce healthy skin; you don’t have to spend hundreds of dollars on cosmetics and beauty care products because your body’s natural “beauty care” will be working for you.
While there are many products that will boast anti-aging benefits, there are a handful of nutrients that are backed by research to enhance skin health and promote a glowing complexion.
Vital Nutrients For Ageless Skin
Silica is the third most abundant trace element in the human body and one of the most vital nutrients for collagen production. Collagen plays a crucial role in the extracellular matrix (ECM) of your skin, which is the scaffolding that holds your skin up, helping it to appear more elastic and less wrinkled.
After the age of 21, your collagen production naturally begins to decline at about 1% per year, with a rapid shift in collagen synthesis occurring for women during the menopause years. As collagen production plummets, the integrity of your ECM becomes compromised, resulting in more wrinkles and less elasticity.
Silica plays a role in collagen production by activating specific enzymes called hydroxylation enzymes that are vital for the formation of the collagen network that provides strength and elasticity to your skin.
Supplying your body with sufficient silica can enhance your collagen production and, therefore, may combat some of the collagen loss that comes with age.
Selenium is an essential mineral that plays a role in a number of biological processes, including reproduction, immunity, DNA synthesis, and thyroid hormone metabolism. Unfortunately, selenium deficiency affects anywhere from 500 million to 1 billion people worldwide, with the United States being significantly impacted. In my practice, I find that 98% of people tested are deficient.
In your skin, selenium is vital for the production of antioxidants. As mentioned, UV damage from the sun is one of the most common causes of skin aging, accounting for around 80% of extrinsic aging. Research shows that selenium can upregulate antioxidant enzymes that are present in your skin cells to help protect your skin from the aging impacts of UV radiation.
Glutathione peroxidase, in particular, appears to be significantly upregulated by selenium. This compound is known as the most powerful antioxidant in your body and has been shown to assist in the fight against UV radiation and improve inflammatory skin conditions like psoriasis.
Selenium is also crucial in the production of thyroid hormones. And if you’re looking for glowing, youthful skin — a healthy thyroid function is vital. This is due to the role that your thyroid plays in your skin’s hydration, and is the reason that people with hypothyroid tend to have pale, dull skin. Specifically, low thyroid hormone production can inhibit the synthesis of hyaluronic acid (more on that below) and collagen, leaving your skin dry, dull, and colorless.
Hyaluronic acid (HA) is a crucial nutrient for skin hydration, and one thing that all people with a youthful complexion have in common is optimal skin moisture. Youthful looking skin retains its resilience and pliability and generally appears healthier due to its ability to hold water.
Hyaluronic acid is a major component of your extracellular matrix, where it has a unique ability to supply your cells with the moisture they need to function properly.
Unfortunately, as you age, your levels of HA decline, leaving your skin dry, rough, and wrinkled. What’s more, extrinsic factors like UV radiation and air pollution also rob your skin of moisture, further compounding the dehydration of your skin.
Luckily, you can combat this dehydration by drinking enough water. However, it’s crucial that you also incorporate a HA supplement into your regimen so that the water you’re drinking actually gets locked into your skin. Otherwise, the water may just pass through your body without being retained by your skin cells.
Biotin, also known as vitamin B7, is a crucial nutrient for hair, skin, and nail health.
Deficiency in biotin results in dry, inflamed skin, often accompanied by red rash or dermatitis.
Although research hasn’t fully uncovered the role that biotin plays in youthful skin, it’s likely in part due to its role in fat metabolism. Biotin is an essential coenzyme for a number of compounds involved in the metabolism and synthesis of fatty acids, which are crucial components of the membranes of the cells in your body — skin cells included.
In order for your cells to receive proper nourishment, they need to have the correct types and ratio of fatty acids. This makes biotin a crucial nutrient for skin health and the health of every tissue in your body.
Research also indicates that biotin may be a crucial nutrient for the production of keratin, the primary protective protein found in your hair and nails. When you have abundant keratin your hair appears thick and glossy, and your nails are strong and resilient.
The Simplest Way To Prevent Aging Skin
Each of the above nutrients plays a unique yet crucial role in promoting skin health and delaying the aging process. While you can tailor your diet to include foods rich in selenium, silica, biotin, hyaluronic acid, this would be a time consuming effort. Furthermore, it is very unlikely that you would get enough of these nutrients every day to create meaningful changes in your skin health.
That’s why I formulated a product that contains all four of these vital nutrients that’s specifically targeted at anti-aging, called Ageless AF.
Ageless AF is a combination of:
- Bamboo silica to support collagen synthesis
- Selenium to combat oxidative stress and irritation in your skin
- Hyaluronic acid to capture water molecules and hydrate your skin
- Biotin to promote hair, skin and nail health on a cellular level
Taking Ageless AF once a day can help your body’s natural anti-aging efforts by bringing hydration and nourishment to your skin, enhancing your collagen production, and protecting your skin against oxidative stress.
You may not be able to avoid aging altogether, but there are plenty of ways to slow down the process.
When it comes to skin health, being aware of your sun exposure, and using some type of UV protection is one of the best ways to get ahead of the sun damage. Sunscreens can be very helpful, but nutrients like selenium that protect your skin from the inside out are also vital to your skin’s defense system.
Keeping your skin hydrated is also crucial for anti-aging as it’s key for the nourishment of your cells and gives you that healthy glow that everyone is after. For this, drinking enough water will get you halfway there, but there is no better nutrient than hyaluronic acid, which literally traps water molecules in your skin.
You’ll also want to stay on top of your collagen production, especially after the age of 21. Silica is a crucial nutrient for collagen synthesis as it supports the enzymes necessary for producing and cross-linking collagen in your skin’s extracellular matrix.
And of course, you can do everything right, but if your skin isn’t getting the nutrients it needs due to poor cellular health, it will all be for naught. Therefore, adding selenium and biotin to the mix assists in the health of your cells and helps to ensure that you’re delivering the nutrition your cells need.
If you want to make your anti-aging regimen simple, grab some Ageless AF. It contains all four of these crucial nutrients, allowing for an effortless anti-aging routine.
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