Our skin is our largest and most sensitive organ. It’s considered the mirror of our inner health and wellness because it clearly reflects our state of well-being. It’s no surprise then that our daily living and eating habits can influence the health and condition of our skin.
Let’s face it: aging is inevitable. But we can prevent the signs of aging by making the right choices for our skin—both internally and externally. For example, improper nutrition, lack of sleep and using ineffective, chemical-based skincare products can wreak havoc on our skin, thereby creating premature signs of aging. On the other hand, healthy living habits, good nutrition and the right skin care products can create healthy, vibrant skin—and contribute to overall well-being.
Putting our best face forward starts with food. Unless our skin is getting the nutrients from food that it needs, it just won’t look its best. A basic understanding of our diet and influence of certain foods on the skin is crucial.
Some skin conditions, such as acne, eczema, psoriasis and rosacea, have been linked to improper digestion. Certain foods and beverages like alcohol, vinegar, dairy product, caffeine, and spicy, greasy or refined foods can cause indigestion because they are irritating to the digestive tract.
The other factor of skin changes and rapid aging process is glycation, the chemical reaction that happens in the body when we eat simple sugars and starches. Glycation makes us look older faster; makes the skin look dull; accelerates aging, yellowing and stiffness of the skin; and decreases circulation. Although glycation cannot be stopped completely, it can be reduced considerably by making changes in lifestyle and diet, such as removing sugary foods as well as starchy foods that are high in sugar (potatoes, rice, pasta and all grains, including bread) from your diet.
To effectively fight premature aging and achieve a healthy skin complexion, eat a more anti-inflammatory diet, eat more fresh fish, pass on the refined sugars and increase your omega-3s. Then, combine this approach with effective, chemical-free, topical products that are made fresh—just like good food—and sold and used within a short time frame.
Follow these nutritional solutions for healthy skin:
• Avoid sugar and white flour that cause glycation.
• Take probiotic supplements daily.
• Increase intake of healthy fats—avocados, coconut oil, olive oil—in the daily diet.
• Take fish oil supplements.
• Reduce stress whenever possible by taking kava-kava, holy basil, B-complex vitamins and adaptogenic herbs. They help the body and the brain adapt to daily stressors.
• Take digestive enzymes with rich protein meals.
• Drink only warm water with lemon juice, apple cider vinegar and local honey to get more energy and metabolism. Ice or cold drinks decrease the absorption rate.
• Eat more cultured foods like yogurt and kefir.
• Snack on almonds. They are stuffed with vitamin E, a potent sun blocker.
• Eat a few ounces of dark chocolate per day. Flavonols, the antioxidants in dark chocolate, reduce roughness in the skin and protect against sun damage.
• Sprinkle flax seeds on oatmeal or veggies. They contain omega-3 fatty acids, which erase spots and iron out fine lines.
Topical treatments are just as important as proper nutrition. Find an experienced aesthetician—preferably with a medical background—that will customize a clinical and home skin care program, and use monthly facials that will clean, heal and prevent.
Individuals will be amazed by the huge difference adopting these simple strategies can make for the health of our skin, and our life.
Anna Golub is an award-winning skin care specialist, nutritionist and herbalist with a background in biology and medical technology. As an innovator and proponent of organic skin care, Anna accumulated more than 20 years of study, research and professional experience in paramedical aesthetic as well as anti-aging and holistic skin care. She presents education for advanced aesthetic technology including: Cold Laser, Needle-free Messotherapy, Microdermabrasion, Pressotherapy for cellulite reduction and lymphatic drainage. Golub is a specialist in the anti-aging sciences, including the effects of nutrition, hormonal changes and lifestyle on the skin. She is the owner of Renaissance Clinique and formulator of Vitana skin care as well as a contributing author of publication “Skin as a Mirror of our Health” and a member of American Association of Nutrition Counseling.