Wrinkles? Are they Aging you?
Spring is more than half over! What are you going to do about the summer sun and your skin?
A recent article in Reader’s Digest suggests some rules that have changed about taking care of your skin in the summer sun. I read them with interest. Not a word was muttered or eluded to about nutrition.
This was dismaying to me. Here’s a brief outline of the rules that have changed.
- Old advice: use a shot glass of sunscreen to cover your body.
New rule: use the house-painting rule – apply 2 coats for better and more thorough coverage.
- Old advice: SPF 15 is perfectly fine.
New rule: SPF 50 offers significantly better protection especially when you consider cumulative exposure over the years.
- Old advice: it’s most important to slather on sunscreen at the beach.
New rule: applying every day is crucial, too. Make it a routine just like shaving. Everyday activities like driving and short, regular exposures contribute to sun damage.
- Old advice: wear sunglasses.
New rule: make them wraparound and wear a broad-brimmed hat. Small rimmed sunglasses let in too many UV rays.
- Old advice: worry about sun exposure during the hours of 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.
New rule: early mornings and late afternoons can be dangerous, too.
This sounded like an article written by a sunscreen manufacturer! There’s a lot of misguided information out there coming from so-called experts.
- Heavy sun exposure (50,000+ lifetime hours) increases your risk of wrinkling 3 to 1.
- Smokers usually wrinkle 20 years earlier than nonsmokers.
- Sun exposure can cause skin cancer – don’t burn yourself to a crisp.
- Sun exposure (common sense levels) can prevent skin cancer.
- The sun is the most natural way to get the all important vitamin D.
I don’t know about you but I am not into slathering all those chemicals on my body.
There is a better way.
How about getting some sun protection from your food? Just how does that work? Do you slather food all over your skin? Nope! Eat it!
Carotenoid rich fruits and vegetables: tomatoes, spinach, strawberries, red bell peppers, peaches, carrots, leafy greens.
- Antioxidants provide protection from oxidative stress (free radical damage) and inflammation.
- Filters UV light even in the eye’s macula reducing risk of age-related eye cataracts and ARMD (age-related macular degeneration.)
- Contributes to healthy skin tone minimizing fine lines and wrinkles.
Flavonoid rich fruits and vegetables: kale, beets, berries, oranges, lemons, grapefruit.
- Reduces risk of wrinkles and dry skin.
- Critical for production of healthy collagen (the glue that holds the body together.)
- Protects the skin from the sun’s ultraviolet light (UVA & UVB).
Olive oil increases absorption of carotenoids/antioxidants.
Green tea has photo-protective capacity.
- Recent 12 week study: fair skinned people were supplemented with green tea and vitamin C. Their skin was exposed to UV radiation before and after supplementation which typically increases inflammation. The level of sunburn and inflammation was reduced after the 12 week period. (Rhodes LE et al. Oral green tea catechin metabolites are incorporated into human skin and protect against UV radiation-induced cutaneous inflammation in association with reduced production of pro-inflammatory elcosanoid 12-hydroxyelcosatetraenoic acid. Br J Nutr Jan 28:1-10. Epub ahead of print, 2013.)
Resveratrol rich fruits: pomegranates, blueberries, red and purple grapes, cranberries.
- Protects the skin from UV with free radical scavenging and anti-inflammatory actions.
Meats: salmon, grass-fed beef and free range poultry.
- Protein provides building blocks for skin to repair and renew keeping it smooth and firm.
- Omega-3’s soothe and protect from inflammation.
A preliminary 3 month study suggests that omega-3s may boost skin immunity after UV exposure. Immune suppression was 50% lower in people receiving omega-3s than the placebo group after 8 to 15 minutes of sun exposure. (Pilkington SM et al. Randomized controlled trial of oral omega-3 PUFA in solar-simulated radiation-induced suppression of human cutaneous immune responses. Am J Clin Nutr 07:646-52,2013.)
Whole grains, nuts, seeds, and legumes – dietary essential fatty acids produce skin’s natural oils.
- Acts as a protective shock absorber.
- Keeps skin hydrated, plumper, and looking younger.
Yogurt with its probiotic properties relieves digestive stress reducing risk of inflammation.
Topical Nutrients for Sun Protection
- Vitamins A, C, and E keep skin cells healthy as well as having healing properties. UV exposure depletes antioxidant levels in the skin.
- Green tea applied topically protects against inflammation and photo-damage.
- Echinacea protects skin collagen from oxidation and supports skin hydration.
Supplementation with quality, whole food supplements will enhance your skin’s ability to be healthy and protect you from over exposure to the sun.
Vitamin D in the form of D3.
- Skin has the ability to make vitamin D when exposed to the sun. (An interesting fact here: cholesterol is necessary in order for vitamin D to be made from the sun.)
- Protects the skin from the sun’s UV radiation and slows the aging process. (Reichrath J. Unraveling hidden secrets: The role of vitamin D in skin aging. Dermato-Endocrinolgoy 43:241-44,2012)
- Tip: taking vitamin D along with your essential fatty acids and omega-3’s at meal time may help you absorb these fat soluble nutrients.
Many people avoid sunlight or use sunscreens. This means they may be at risk of being vitamin D deficient which can lead to any number of serious health problems.
- November 2010 the Institute of Medicine raised the recommended daily allowance of vitamin D.
600 IU for children and most adults
70 years and older should take 800 IU
It has actually been shown there are benefits of taking 1000 IU daily.
Researchers have found that supplement users are at a much lower risk of developing eye diseases such as cataracts and age-related macular degeneration.
So what are you going to do about slowing down the wrinkles and signs of aging?
- Option 1: stay out of the sun?
- Option 2: get out in the sun and slather on the sunscreen?
- Option 3: eat foods to provide protection from sun damage?
- Option 4: use a topical more natural sun protector?
- Option 5: take quality sun protecting supplements?
Tell me which of the above options you are planning to do during the upcoming summer season?
As for me, I am going to do options 3, 4, and 5. They are the options I’ve chosen for the past several years.
The supplements I use are:
- Whole grain lipids and sterols (essential fatty acids)
- Omega-3 Salmon Oil Plus
- Carotenoid Complex
- Essential Vitamin and Mineral Complex
- Biologically complete protein with all 22 amino acids
- Pomegranate, Acai Berry and Green Tea
- Super Fruit with Resveratrol from berries and grapes
- Natural antioxidant
- Highly bioavailable
- Proven to reduce fine lines and wrinkles by 28% in only 28 days.
- Has antioxidants, green tea and Echinacea
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Pat has been married to the same man for 52 years, is the mother of 3 adult children, and grandma to 8 grandchildren. Growing up in the country gave her a head start to living a healthy lifestyle. This grandma became interested in nutrition as a mother and for the past 27 plus years she has specialized in teaching others the importance of good nutrition. Challenges along the road have been many; her father overcoming congestive heart failure with nutrition, her husband's battle with GERD and dealing with major heart issues, her daughter's battle with a brain tumor, her grandson beating Hodgkin's Lymphoma, her mother's stage 4 lung cancer, her mom-n-law's dementia, and others. Her goal is to empower the future health of others with wisdom, knowledge and common sense so they can have the BEST REAL HEALTH possible.
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