Even if your anti-aging lotions contain the most powerful ingredients (retinol, hyaluronic acid, ceramides, etc.), you’re still only addressing your aging skin on the surface level.
When you go deeper and consider how all the hidden systems in your body impact your largest organ, your skin, you begin to unlock powerful solutions to skin health and appearance. Understand how your lifestyle habits and even health issues impact your skin so you can achieve your ideal beauty.
Macronutrient and micronutrient deficiencies
Did you know that the macro- and micronutrients we ingest impact our skin’s elasticity, glow, and tone? It’s true:
- Vitamin C is not only a cancer fighter, it helps with collagen production to keep your skin firm and elastic.
- Vitamin D creates healthy skin cells and helps keep skin tone even
- Vitamin E’s power to absorb UV radiation helps prevent age spots and wrinkles
- Vitamin K helps diminish age spots and dark under-eye circles
- Omega-3 fatty acids helps keep skin healthy and free of blemishes
- Monounsaturated fats like those in avocado and nuts plump skin cells, creating a more youthful appearance
You may think you’re getting plenty of these vitamins through your careful diet.
And yet...the United States Department of Agriculture's report on dietary guidelines has found that 94 percent of Americans are deficient in vitamin D, 88 percent are deficient in vitamin E, 43 percent are deficient in vitamin A, and 44 percent are deficient in calcium. Adequate macro- and micronutrients help keep skin firm, supple and glowing.
Before you fret about slacking on your 7 daily servings of fruits and vegetables, understand that there are many reasons you may be nutrient deficient. These include:
- the nutrient-depleted soil common in many American farms. Studies have shown this soil produces nutrient depleted food.
- idiosyncratic issues with your digestive system like malabsorption.
- alcoholism which can interfere with absorption of folate, vitamin B6, thiamine, and vitamin A
- medical issues
- prescription medications
- poor diet
Diving into the issues that may underlie your skin health equips you to manage your appearance for life.
One way to determine your micro and macro nutrient balances is to undergo micronutrient testing. With your levels established, you can see how you want to change your diet or even add supplements. You can also consider improving your diet so it includes more avocados, beans and lentils, berries, and more of the foods we recommend for youthful skin in our book Stay Young: 10 Proven Steps to Ultimate Health.
A sedentary lifestyle
Humans were built to move. Just as a car slowly falls apart (belts get loose, fuel pumps dry up, tires deflate), inadequate movement causes our bodies to break down. While we typically think of movement as enhancing our musculo-skeletal, cardiovascular and respiratory systems, its effects also keep skin brighter, tighter, and more even.
Skin can only glow when the body’s other organs are functioning well. When the liver is efficiently filtering toxins, the skin doesn’t have to pick up the slack by pushing toxins through its pores. Toxin overload manifests as chronic skin issues like rosacea, eczema, and acne.
Further, when your circulatory system operates at peak, it delivers oxygen-rich blood to the skin for healthy pink cheeks! It also provides the nutrients needed to slow skin sagging. A healthy circulation system also carries carbon dioxide and other waste products away from your skin to prevent toxins from causing outbreaks. Every other physiological system has the potential to either support or diminish skin health.
Yes, “beauty sleep” is a thing. While the most recognized side effect of sleep deprivation is a decrease in mental functions, not getting our Zzzz’s shows up on our faces, too.
While we sleep, the body repairs cells and tissues, helping us maintain a youthful outward appearance. When you skip sleep, your body is unable to properly manage endocrine function, which in turn speeds up the clock and causes premature aging. Not only will the appearance of aging be more noticeable, age related illnesses become more likely to occur.
Sleep should be viewed as a necessity and not a luxury. Society has embraced the technology boom, but the human body is taking a beating for it. While adults averaged 8.5 hours per night in 1960, recent research shows that they now average only about 7, which means an 18% reduction. Over time, this adds up to thousands of missed hours of sleep. If the promise of being clear-headed at work isn’t enough to convince you to take sleep seriously, maybe the image of wrinkles, age spots and under-eye circles will. Take action to improve your sleep today.
A condition rather than a disease, chronic stress damages nearly every physical system, including the skin. We were not created to handle large amounts of constant stress
When the body is in stress mode, it shifts its primary focus away from growth and repair (new fresh skin) to survival. Everything from the digestive tract to the skin is compromised.
When you’re stressed, your body releases hormones like cortisol, which breaks down the skin's collagen and elastin. It can also increase inflammation which in turn ages skin and accelerates wrinkle formation. Studies have also shown that chronic stress can contribute to insulin resistance, causing higher levels of blood sugar that can lead to glycation - a biological process which hinders elasticity in skin.
Exposure to environmental toxins
You are what you breathe! In many cities and even rural areas, environmental toxins are everywhere. Pollutants seep into your body through your skin, your breath, anywhere they can.
Pollutants can act as free radicals destabilizing and harming cells and systems. Often the immune system can sweep them from the body. If too many invade, the immune system falls behind.
Over time, these toxins cause the skin to lose its elasticity, resulting in wrinkles, uneven skin tone and age spots.
You can avoid environmental toxins by taking these steps:
- Use damp cleaning supplies as much as possible - pesticides and pollutants are present in dust. Vacuuming and dusting can spread these toxins into the air. Damp paper towels can be thrown away. Cleaning damp mops by rinsing the water into the sewer system removes toxins effectively. Consider using a mask when vacuuming.
- Avoid pesticides - pick up crumbs and spills quickly to avoid enticing insects. Use baits and traps rather than sprays, dusts or bombs. Avoid using chemical flea collars or shampoos for your pets.
- Avoid dry cleaning - wash clothes labeled “dry clean only” with water. Dry cleaners’ use of perchloroethylene (PERC) pollutes the air in your home. You can also ask your dry cleaner to just “wet clean” these items.
- Pay attention to air quality forecasts, particularly in pollution or fire-prone areas. Never exercise on bad air quality days.
Smoking wrinkles and ruins the skin more quickly and dramatically that most of the issues listed on this page.
The 4,000 chemicals in tobacco smoke trigger the destruction of collagen and elastin, ruining skin’s firmness and elasticity. The sagging skin and deep wrinkles that result can put years on a person’s face. Second, the smoking habit causes deep lines around your lips known as the “smoker’s pucker.”
Similar repetitve motion of inhaling smoke causes crow’s feet or deep wrinkles around the eyes. Nicotine narrows veins, arteries and capillaries, making it hard for the cardiovascular system to deliver oxygen- and nutrient-rich blood to the skin. In smokers, that youthful glow just drains away, leaving them with sallow, age-spotted, and wrinkled skin.
Enough with the scolding!
The good news is that in as little as one month after stopping smoking, the lungs will start to heal themselves. While it takes 10 years to fully undo the existing damage, lungs can return to close to normal condition. Even secondhand smoke can cause the same early aging and poor health effects as actually smoking. So, if you’re not a smoker but you surround yourself with people who smoke, the effects on your body and health are almost the same as if you lit up yourself.
Excessive alcohol use
Alcohol shows up on your skin, adding years to your face. First, it dehydrates your entire body, including your skin. This dehydration leads to wrinkles, puffiness, dry skin, red cheeks, and broken purple capillaries.
Alcohol also sparks inflammation in the skin, a histamine reaction that causes redness and flushing. While those who start drinking notice the redness comes and goes, if they continue, they find it persists even if they are not drinking. It becomes a permanent, prominent facial feature.
What can you do to regain your health?
The important thing to remember is that whether you’re 29 or 99, it’s never too late to take steps to regain your health.
- Adopt an anti-aging diet. The right nutrition can do wonders for your long-term health and your appearance.
- Measure and balance your micro- and macronutrient levels
- Get active any way you can, even if it means parking further away from the supermarket and walking the extra distance. Sitting really is the new smoking. Our bodies were meant to move. Walking is great, adding yoga is even better.
- If you smoke or drink heavily, stop. Most people define heavy drinking as becoming intoxicated, but even more than four glasses of wine per week could have effects on the body.
- Take steps to improve the amount and quality and quantity of the sleep you get.
- Find ways to help yourself de-stress.
It can be difficult at first to make big, life-altering changes like these, but your body will thank you in so many ways.
Nourish your body with the right nutrients.
Our Age-Support multivitamin is tailored to provide the right amount of vitamins and minerals that help nourish and support your wellness with the right ingredients designed for your age. Instead of just buying any regular supplement off the shelf, our high-quality product is made for the unique needs of an aging population, and includes vital ingredients that help support heart health, bone strength, memory and more. Plus, it’s vegetarian, so you can feel good about what you’re putting into your body. Pair our Age Support multivitamin with our Nature’s Collagen supplement for even better results. BioGen® Collagen comes from chicken, shrimp and crab, and helps support joint health as well as heart health and skin health, providing a full-spectrum of benefits for the body.
And last, but not least, make sure your body is fully nourished at night as well, with our high quality Nature’s ZZZ’s supplement. Made with natural ingredients, this supplement works with your body to help you relax and fall into a restful sleep without lingering drowsiness the next day. Plus it’s vegetarian, dairy-free and gluten-free.
Ready to refresh your appearance?
Our powerful supplements form a trifecta of wellness that helps to support your health while benefiting your heart, joints, sleep and so much more, giving you a well-rounded balance of vitamins and minerals, in addition to scientifically-backed extracts so that you can enjoy life to the fullest at any age!
Regain your health and wellness today and take impactful steps to help slow down the aging process! Check out our full list of nutritional products here to get started.