We often think that taking care of our body is something dedicated to young people who still “can do something” to prevent aging. It’s a big mistake to consider that we are not anymore in the stage of pampering us and caring about our image because every chapter in our life deserves to be lived at the fullest, and that includes giving our body and health special attention.
Aging is a biological process that we need to accept with wisdom because it becomes part of our life. However, that doesn’t mean that we can’t give our body the best preparation to grow feeling awesome inside and outside. I would like to share with you two important aspects every person must work on if they want to age gracefully because it’s not enough just looking fabulous but actually feeling healthy with the vitality of keep enjoying the greatest moments with your loved ones.
Start by your skin! Have in consideration that aging is a natural process of the skin that you can delay. The loss of elasticity, appearance of wrinkles, lines of expression and rough texture of the dermis are symptoms of a skin that has begun to age. Skin’s aging can take place due to many factors such as the weather, the toxins in the environment, food habits, stress, etc. Many people don’t know that all signs of aging must be treated at the same time to obtain visible and durable results. In this manner, whenever you look for a skincare treatment you need to have in mind three components that help effectively to fight the skin’s aging:
• Retexturizing: It contains properties that help epidermal renewal by visibly correcting wrinkles.
• Firming: It helps the skin to recover its thickness and density. As the name implies, it affirms the dermis giving it a softer and more youthful appearance.
• Moisturizers: They are responsible for reducing skin roughness, reinforcing the elasticity and protective barrier of the skin.
To meet these demands, US scientists identified the components of three products that combined, can rapidly and effectively improve multiple signs of skin aging. They are the Jasmonic Acid, the Hague tree extract and the Hyaluronic Acid. Jasmonic acid is a retexturizer par excellence while the extract of the beech tree improves the firmness, thickness, and density of the skin. Look for them in the ingredients of the anti-aging products you buy.
Introducing you the Biggest Cause of Aging: For me, it’s really important telling you that one of the biggest factors that weaken the skin protection barrier is the presence of strong emotional tensions like the stress. I would like to remind you that this new disease is more frequent every day, affecting not only adults but children and teenagers too. Stress is one of the worst enemies of young and healthy skin. The cortisol released with this reaction deteriorates the dermis and enhance the appearance of wrinkles. Many scientists support the hypothesis that one of the primary causes of aging is oxidative stress. Free radicals, caused by oxidative stress can damage the DNA, fats, and proteins in the body, leading to premature aging. Oxidative stress not only ages your skin and external appearance but also deteriorates the internal cells of the body, reaching situations of degenerative diseases such as cancer or arteriosclerosis.
Many times, we normalize stress by considering it as a temporary stage in our lives attached to circumstance. It becomes a big problem when you get used to the stressful state of your body and you start to feel this way with any new event or change in your life. The stress is not normal and it’s more powerful and aggressive than aging to deteriorate not only your skin but also your health. Dozens of diseases and conditions are extremely correlated with experiencing high levels of stress. Anytime that you feel this way, remember this should not be a “natural” state of your body, find some tools or exercises that help you deal with those tense emotions and get rid of that feeling. Yoga, meditation, and physical exercise are good options to deal with stress and reduce the episodes!
Your skin is also a reflection of your emotions! Products based on Rosa Gallica extract and Manosa are ideal to eliminate signs of stressed skin. Analgesic substances such as chamomile are also great to relax your skin. Glycerin-based products also increase and prolong hydration, helping to restore the skin's elasticity and smoothness. Habits you should avoid to prevent skin aging:
1. Not sleeping enough: This affects the metabolism of your skin because its renovation takes place during the night. It’s proven that people who work through the night age sooner. When we sleep, the cells activate and repair the damage they suffer due to free radicals and toxins in the environment. Therefore, sleeping at least 7 hours is essential to keep the skin healthy and free of imperfections. I understand that sometimes you have a high level of activity in our lives. However, try to be organized with your time so you don’t have to sacrifice the moment when your body rests and regenerates itself for another day.
2. Not drinking water: You wouldn’t imagine the difference you can feel in your health by drinking more water at different moments of the day. The organism is largely composed of this vital fluid and dehydration leads to a series of aesthetic and health risks. In order to keep aging away, it’s recommended to drink at least 8 cups of water per day, increasing it during those days of physical training. Natural juices are a very good alternative to help rejuvenate the skin cells.
3. Having a sedentary life: Not giving your body a regular level of activity is one of the main causes of early aging. Find an activity that adjusts to your schedule and needs because when you sweat, your skin liberates toxins.
4. Eating trans-fat food and refined flours: These “food” we find in the supermarket only accelerates aging. Replace them with whole-grain food.
5. Smoking and not using sunscreen: This powerful and destructive combination makes the dermis more fragile, affecting the production of collagen and elastin. Over time, your skin will look intoxicated and opaque, struggling to produce its natural oils. In addition, the toxins released by the cigarette cause spots on the skin and teeth. On the other hand, the ultraviolet rays of the sun are one of the first causes of premature aging and imperfections. These are quite aggressive with the surface of the skin, deteriorating it very slowly.
What about our alimentation? The best compliment for every chemical or natural treatment you take to age gracefully is a balanced diet with the exact components that your body needs at a certain age to keep giving the best of you daily. When it comes to starting any anti-aging process or treatment, is recommendable to purify the body from the inside. Especially because the accumulation of toxic waste within the body derived from eating inappropriate food and long and copious digestions, ends up being more prejudicial than you think.
This toxic load reduces the space in the body as well as the oxygen flow, being one of the main causes of cellular aging. You can find several vitamins that will help your body fight aging. Those with an antioxidant effect are particularly effective since they help you to get rid of the free radicals generated by the stress before they cause any damage to our cells.
The antioxidant foods counteract the oxidative stress that the tissues support, igniting and damaging them. Antioxidant nutrients such as vitamins C and E, provitamin A and the minerals zinc and selenium help in the formation of collagen, the protein that forms the structure of skin, bones, and organs. They have a similar effect on many compounds found in plants. You also need enough protein to promote proper tissue renewal.
To give you a clearer idea about which food could be more beneficial to keep your body with the highest vitality inside and outside, let's talk about vitamins with more anti-aging properties and the foods where we can find them. Beta-carotene These are precursors of vitamin A, which becomes retinol inside our body. They have the property to strengthen the immune system, prevent inflammation and cell damage caused by medical situations.
Foods rich in beta-carotene
• Sweet potatoes
• Col kale
• Red pepper
• Watercress Vitamin C which is an excellent antioxidant and gives us high protection against free radicals. It also helps us in the absorption of non-heme iron (the one of plant origin) and cooperates with the regeneration of vitamin E.
Foods rich in vitamin C:
• Citrus: grapefruit, oranges, and lemons
• Green leaves
• Kiwi Vitamin E which is another highly antioxidant lipid soluble vitamin. It protects the skin from UVA rays and fights external and endogenous free radicals.
Foods rich in vitamin E:
• Sunflower seeds
• Hazelnuts Vitamin K which helps with the blood clot. Aesthetically, it helps us in the prevention of the appearance of a clear sign of aging, permanent eye bags, usually caused by capillaries with effusions. It also contributes to bone health, preventing osteoporosis.
Foods rich in vitamin K:
• Dark green leafy vegetables
• Romaine lettuce
• Parsley Vitamin B complex which has many functionalities but when we talk about beauty and aesthetic results, niacin helps us keep the skin hydrated, and biotin strengthens the hair and nails.
Foods rich in B vitamins:
• Sunflower seeds
• Nutritional yeast which is not very common in our diet but if you consider them for your regular diet, they can make a huge difference, helping your body to absorb other vitamins as well these include:
• Black grapes with resveratrol: rich in one of the most effective antioxidants under the skin. You can eat a bowl each 2-3 days.
• Forest fruits, protection against free radicals: they are very low in sugars and very dense in protective substances against free radicals. They are ideal to add to smoothies or, frozen, to make healthy ice cream. The wild ones are more nutritious.
• Water Kefir to improve intestinal health: Its fermentation in pure sugar water gives rise to a carbonated drink with a great variety and quantity of microorganisms beneficial for intestinal health. The state of the intestines is reflected in the skin. Drink 1 or 2 cups per day.
• Matcha green tea, full of antioxidants: It is another of the best antioxidants that exist for its richness in chlorophyll, minerals and catechins, the antioxidant substances of green tea. In this case, multiply the dose because you take the whole leaves as a powder. Take 1 or 2 cups each day.
• Turmeric and ginger, anti-aging roots: these two roots cannot be missing in the pantry of anyone wishing to prevent aging. Both have anti-inflammatory capacities, are very easy to use and give flavor to the preparations. Consume 2 slices of ginger per day. Also, do not stop using turmeric powder daily.
• Tempeh, a mix of probiotics and amino acids: It is another source of probiotics. In this case, in addition to the beneficial bacteria, you get amino acids for the formation of collagen. The tempeh of chickpeas can marinate it with tamari and mustard. Incorporate chickpea tempeh in your diet twice a week!
• Nuts, the richest in Omega-3: This is the fat with more anti-inflammatory action. They are also a source of proteins and minerals. They can be somewhat indigestible, but if you soak them one night, you will eliminate antinutrients and multiply their benefits. You can eat 5-7 daily.
You should include both skin care and an anti-aging diet in your life as a healthy lifestyle habit. No matter your age, you are always in the right time of taking care of your body from the inside, to the outside, starting from what is truly important; your health. Any beauty treatment won’t be complete or potentially effective if you are not conscious about how you treat your body and what you can improve its performance. Feeling sensational is a decision and depends on the time you dedicate to hear your body and identify what it needs!