We've reached week 11 of our 11 weeks to better skin series. This week, combat some visible signs of aging by making a couple of easy adjustments to your diet.
- Sagging eyelids: Generally caused by free-radical damage and too much time in the sun (photoaging), fight this with anti-oxidants like vitamin E and C. Macadamia nuts have the highest amounts of vitamin E as well as squalene (a naturally occurring antioxidant in skin sebum which is reduced as we age). Include macadamia nuts in your diet. Try this orange pecan and macadamia nut recipe for an interesting, healthy twist on granola.
Jowls and sagging neck: Often caused by rapid weight loss and hormonal changes (lower growth hormones) as you age, don’t let sagging skin in your neck take that youthful spirit away. Tighten up with proteins and healthy fatty acids. Avocado is full of healthy fatty acids. Remember to scoop a little more guacamole or simply spread on toast for a simple breakfast. Eat soy, beans or just include some protein (whey/soy) in your next delicious smoothie.
- Dry skin: With age, oil secreting glands weaken and secrete less oil. Skin is less moisturized and becomes drier. Replenish and plump up with Omega 3 fatty acids – found plentiful in fish oils, edamame, flaxseed or walnuts.
- Sun damage: Tanned skin is looks great. However, it also means sun damage occurs. A history of such sun damage (caused by repeated exposure to sun, even winter sun) leads to skin producing melanin faster and more sun spots. Reduce sun damage by using natural products – sun screens that contain zinc or titanium dioxide. Follow sun exposure (even with sun screen) with after-sun lotions that contain emollients to soothe and heal exposed skin.
- Wrinkles: Abnormal attachment of sugar molecules to skin – a process called glycation – increases with age. Glycation compromises skin’s collagen leading to loss of elasticity accelerated aging and compromised barrier function leads wrinkles and frown lines. Reduce the effects of glycation with vitamin B1. Include a daily dose of vitamin B in your meals with wholegrain cereals, brown rice, nuts (like macadamia, pistachio, pecans, cashews) and seeds (sunflower, sesame, pumpkin).
Finally, as skin absorbs at least 60% of what we put on it, round out your skin products that contain healthy fruit and nut oils.
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