As you might agree, life happens (with or without your help), but does it have to show on your skin?! Your skin can be vibrant and even help you disguise your real age for many years, but only with one rule, as long as you treat it and protect it.
Treating it with care means that you wash, feed and moisturize it with nonabrasive products that work best with your skin type. And protect it from certain external and internal environments like free radicals that continuously attack and damage your skin. Let’s have a closer look at all of the key anti-aging prevention factors.
Your First Signs Of Aging
What’s important to remember is that the root of all aging begins with damage to a single cell. Therefore, let us identify and cover the most damaging factors first. The reason we want to point them out to you is that knowledge is power. Once you’ll know what these triggers are, you can take immediate action to prevent them to the best of your ability.
So, the major enemies of the skin are:
1. Free radicals
3. Sun or ultraviolet rays
Reverse Skin Aging Naturally
1. What's free radicals?
Free radicals are very reactive molecules within our bodies that can damage lipids, proteins, membranes and DNA. You are attacked by them consistently. It might surprise you, but free radicals are created even by breathing (when oxygen is used to produce energy in your body) and by eating (when your cells metabolize food for energy). Now, you might be puzzled, why are they called ‘free’? The reason each of them is free is because they are unpaired and searching for a partner molecule in the process.
The damage done by free radicals results in abnormal skin cells that are no longer consistent and that are now structurally uneven. All of which eventually leads to wrinkles and lines, because the skin cells are weakened. Also, this can lead to brown spots, since it changes pigment formation and decreases collagen production.
Now, there is no reason to panic and stop breathing or eating in order to avoid aging. Even though some free radicals are formed internally through normal human metabolism, the majority of them are created by the external “dark forces.” Such outside factors include air pollution, smoking, sun exposure, stress, unreasonable alcohol consumption and exposure to toxic chemicals.
What to do?
Your body has the ability to neutralize these radicals. It naturally produces antioxidants to control them. As you age (or fall ill), free radicals tend to form a bit more aggressively, and during that process, your naturally produced antioxidants decline. So your goal is to recharge and increase antioxidant levels within your body by eating antioxidant-rich foods and applying natural antioxidant-rich skincare products.
By taking this inner and outer treatment (antioxidant replenishment) approach, you will maximize the synergy in your system and reap greater benefits for your skin. You can find more on anti-aging remedies like anti-inflammatory and antioxidant-rich foods in our future skincare diet articles.
2. Let's talk about the second major skin enemy - inflammation.
It is linked to free radicals because, when they attack a cell, a group of biochemical reactions take place that create inflammation. Don’t look at it lightly. You might think this is a minor thing, but it plays a huge role in your body and can cause serious internal problems.
Even low-level inflammation is harmful, because it produces chemicals that accelerate the destruction of cells and obstruct their function. At first, inflammation may seem mysterious, because it is not visible to the naked eye. The only thing we can see is sunburn, which makes the skin red and swollen. However, in this case, we are talking about something way more threatening to our overall health, not only skin.
When inflammation is ignored (simply because most of us are not aware of it), it can build up overtime and lead to various health issues that are visible and / or invisible. For instance, the visible problem would be endless acne and invisible one would be a heart disease. It can vary from individual to individual, but in any case, it will worsen the situation and slow down healing even when you have a physical injury.
What to do?
In order to help your body stay healthy and fight aging, you should eat foods that are rich in anti-inflammatory ingredients, and on top of it, use natural anti-inflammatory skin care products. Once again, you maximize your results when you work on minimizing your inflammation internally and externally.
3. Ultraviolet rays... fun to be around!
The sun is the primary cause of extrinsic aging. It damages not only your complexion, but the deepest layers of your skin, called the dermis. With a lot of sun exposure, the outer layer of your skin thickens to protect itself from the sun while creating this shell of dead surface skin. The sun also hurts the dermis by destroying its collagen and elastin (the materials that give skin its youthful tautness and elasticity).
Actually, let’s clarify, that it is the combination of ultraviolet (UV) waves, UVA and UVB, that does the damage. The depth of penetration into the skin depends on the wavelength of the UV ray in the light spectrum. UVB (mid-waves) = 280-320 nanometers and UVA (long-waves) = 320-400 nanometers.
UVB rays soak into the outer layer of the skin (epidermis), and they cause visible changes in the skin, like freckling, tanning and burning. These type of skin changes are not sexy or cool as many of us might think, but in fact, they are direct signs that the skin cells have sustained an injury, which can be photoaging or DNA damage. What’s important to remember is that every exposure to UVB rays causes damage, even when it does not show up right away. The naturally created melanin in skin cells supplies some protection from UVB rays, but without a solid sun protection, the damage will still collect over time.
UVA rays, on the other hand, are responsible for photoaging in the long run. They absorb more deeply into the skin than UVB rays; therefore, the damage is not immediately noticeable. UVA rays hit the dermis layer and damage collagen and the collagen-producing cells, gradually weakening and destroying the skin’s infrastructure. With more exposure over time, this invisible injury becomes visible and shows up in the form of deep wrinkles and the risk for skin cancer.
What to do?
Since it is the ultraviolet (UV) part of sunlight that does the damage - use sunscreen when stepping outside and stay away from tanning beds because UV rays are present there, as well. Protect your skin from the sun. It is never too late! Use sunscreen daily… even on a cloudy day, since the sun’s rays can penetrate cloud cover. Use it wherever you are… whether you’re at the beach or taking an afternoon jog, or walking to work and/or even eating lunch outdoors. Put on sunscreen with the same diligence you now apply moisturizer or makeup.
4. Glycation, eh?
It’s time to cover our last skin enemy - glycation. Do you have a sweet tooth? As pleasurable as sugar may be to your tongue, it can actually be just as equally destructive to your skin. Simply put, the glycation process happens when a spike in your blood sugar levels can leave too much sugar circulating in your body. What can cause such a spike in your sugar levels?
Well, it usually comes from eating processed foods or foods with too much refined sugar. Glycation damages collagen by making it stiff. When this happens, the skin doesn’t rebuild in the same way as before, prematurely aging the tissue. In other words, when this process occurs, the skin appears prematurely aged.
What to do?
Choose to consume less refined sugar. Replace it with natural sources, like fresh fruit. Certain foods (including refined sugar) can also cause breakouts. In this case, identify the zone, make adjustments and closely monitor it. To read more about the facial zones visit naturalvibrancy.com
Here is a quick summary of earlier mentioned anti aging home remedies in the video format:
Additional Natural Anti-Aging Remedies
Other sneaky enemies of the skin besides the ‘core four’ are:
Find ways that work for you to manage your stress. Excess levels of cortisol (a hormone that is released when you are tense, worried or anxious) affects, not only your skin, but your entire body. When stress goes out of control, cortisol causes inflammation that tends to linger around.
B. Lack of sleep.
A great deal of studies have shown the importance of getting between seven and nine hours of sleep a night. It gives your body and skin time to repair themselves, improving the function of your immune system, as well as your mental sharpness.
C. Lack of fitness.
No reason to look for excuses. No matter what physical injuries or challenges you face, there are ways to maintain a certain level of fitness. Working out increases the oxygenation of your blood, which delivers nutrients to your skin and increase its vibrancy. Also, it is a great stress remover.
As we all know, smoking damages your skin and speeds up the aging process. The toxic chemicals in cigarettes restrict circulation and create free radicals that ruin collagen. Speaking of toxins, either drugs or alcohol of any kind will increase inflammation, which impacts and harms skin cells, collagen and other internal organs.
Visit our herbal skin care remedies page to learn about some of the ingredients that can effectively heal wounds (with no scaring), as well as assist with anti-aging process.
So, how serious are you about anti-aging?
Are you ready to start making a difference by taking control of the ‘core four’ enemies of the skin that we discussed above? Would you add anything else to this list? Share your thoughts!
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