Enhancing the skin’s renewal
It is very important to bear in mind that your skin, the body's largest organ, is constantly renewing itself. Here is a reminder of some ways in which we can take good care of it to protect it from damage and enhance its renewal.
1. Eating the right kind of food can help your body's ability to heal and keep the skin youthful. It is recommended that we eat a balanced diet that includes raw foods, plenty of yellow, red and orange vegetables, fruits, seeds, grains and nuts. In particular, citrus, guava, cherries, prunes and berries help to keep the skin healthy. Foods high in sulfur such as garlic, onions, and egg whites can also be beneficial. Fish is an excellent source of protein and avocados are a great source of biotin that helps to prevent dry skin and brittle hair and nails. Green tea contains lots of polyphenols, which can reduce inflammation, ageing and may even help reduce cancer formation.
2. While more studies are needed to prove just how much these nutrients are absorbed into the skin when taken by mouth, it has been found that a healthy diet does help us maintain healthier skin, and healthier lives in general.
3. We can also maintain healthy skin by avoiding smoking and excessive alcohol intake.
4. Sunlight is usually the main cause of premature ageing. Although individuals with fair skin usually develop more features of photoaging than darker skin types, all races are affected. It may eventually lead to conditions such as skin cancer. We can help prevent photoaging by sunscreen use (at least a SPF 30 broad spectrum sunscreen is ideal) and other sun protective measures like seeking shade and covering exposed areas.
5. Reducing stress in our lives can also help us keep our skin youthful and healthy. Everywhere around us there are situations that can be perceived as 'stressing us out'. However, we each have a choice in how we view stress and what we allow to stress us. We need to work on our coping mechanisms so that we can view ourselves as victors and not victims in every situation and learn not to 'sweat the small stuff'.
6. On that note, reducing frowning can also minimise the development of unwanted facial wrinkles. Sleeping on our back instead of on our tummies can also help prevent some facial wrinkles.
7. There are many treatment options for those who are concerned about the appearance of ageing skin. These include topical anti-ageing products (e.g., retinoids, alpha hydroxyl acids, antioxidants, botanicals, minerals), chemical peels, microdermabrasion, injectable treatments (Botox, fillers, micro-needling, platelet rich plasma, laser/light rejuvenation, radiofrequency and surgery. Your dermatologist can help you decide which treatment or combinations of treatments are best for you.
- Dr Arusha Campbell-Chambers is a dermatologist and founder of Dermatology Solutions Skin Clinics & Medi-Spas; email: firstname.lastname@example.org