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Who says beauty is only skin deep?
5 Healthy Skin Tips at Any Age
Skin is a direct reflection of what goes on in the interior. While it is always best to nourish your skin from the inside out, we have also included a few tips on the best ways to feed your skin from the outside in.
It's true that you are what you eat. Eating homemade kefir made from the Kefir Starter can balance your inner ecosystem and clear the skin — probiotic-rich kefir can also be used in an at-home facial.
1. Get Your Beauty Sleep
Too little sleep shows up in the skin. While the telltale signs of sleep deprivation can be dark circles under the eyes or even acne, over time the consequences are far more serious. Most of these consequences fall under the category of mood disorders, memory loss, and weakened immune function. Long-term sleep deprivation has been linked to aging skin, while even one night of poor sleep may encourage biological aging in older adults.1,2
If you get 4 to 6 hours of sleep a night, consider going to bed earlier (rather than sleeping in late). When we go to bed soon after sunset, this does a whole lot of good for our immune system, our hormonal system, and even our digestive health.
2. Limit Sugar Consumption
Too much sugar in the diet does this funny thing with proteins. It cross-links with them. This process is called glycation.
Eventually, the cross-link between a sugar and a protein becomes permanent. This matters because glycation can literally make our tissue brittle. This includes skin. Wrinkles, sagging skin, and even cellulite are about the breakdown of connective tissue that lies just beneath the skin. Almost two decades ago, Technion-Israel Institute of Technology researchers discovered that too much fructose (found in fruit, table sugar, and many natural sugars like agave) can accelerate aging in the skin.3 In 2014, UCF researchers confirmed that drinking too much sugary soda, which also contains high fructose corn syrup, may contribute to cell aging.4
The next time you feel tempted to reach for sugar, think A-G-E (Advanced Glycation Endproduct), which translates into the irreversible breakdown of connective tissue that sugar alone is responsible for. An energizing beverage like Ujido Matcha Green Tea may help to control those irresistible urges for something sweet by balancing the body’s systems and potentially reducing sudden food cravings.
3. Beneficial Bacteria to the Rescue!
The skin and the digestive system have a unique connection. Skin health begins and ends in the digestive tract. Everything else is managing symptoms.
Two things to know about your skin and beneficial bacteria:
- Bacteria are everywhere. It’s beyond our control. There are layers of bacteria on our skin. Completely unique communities of bacteria exist in our ears, our nose, and belly button. Usually, this is a good thing. When the bacteria are beneficial, they protect us from disease-causing bugs.
- A healthy inner ecosystem shows up in the skin. This means that gut health and the friendly bacterial community in your digestive tract help to create clear, glowing skin. If things are awry on the surface, you can bet your bottom dollar that it can be traced to something awry in the gut.
Just like it is a good idea to avoid antibiotics in order to preserve gut health, when we avoid harsh antibacterial creams or treatments, we are actually thinking of the bigger picture.
Rather than attempt to kill every microbe on your skin that may cause acne, nourish the mantle of friendly flora that covers your skin. For you, this may mean drinking fermented beverages or eating fermented vegetables. Japanese researchers discovered that eating fermented dairy could help to improve the health of the skin in young women.5 An anti-aging probiotic-rich diet has also been proven to increase lifespan in mice.6
At-home facials with kefir (fermented dairy) or even truly fermented yogurt can directly benefit the skin. That’s right: The topical application of good bacteria does wonders for the complexion. A rejuvenating kefir facial is as nourishing as it is simple — start by cleansing your face and drying it completely. Use clean fingertips or a clean makeup brush to paint fermented kefir all over your face in a mask. Leave the mask on for several hours before you rinse and moisturize or sleep with the kefir mask on overnight, using a clean, cotton pillowcase. Fermented vegetable juice also contains lactic acid and can be used in the same way for a healthy, at-home peel, left on for several hours or overnight.
Tip: Try to not wash your face with soap after rinsing away your fermented facial.
4. Essential Oils Have Healing Benefits
If you are going to put anything on your skin, consider asking the question: “Would I or could I eat this?” If the answer is “no," think twice about whatever you are about to use. This is because the skin directly absorbs whatever you place on it.
This is where essential oils come into the picture.
Many can be used internally, and each one has layer upon layers of benefits. While most essential oils can be healing, it helps to remember that, like other foods, herbs, and products, essential oils also have a “front and a back,” or a positive and a negative side. Essential oils have been buzzing around the Internet and increasing in popularity, potentially leading to their misuse. Essential oil overuse can cause liver damage, which is why it is critically important to use all oils carefully and responsibly (with very limited use on children).
When choosing an essential oil, always go for quality:
- Rose Oil: A delicate oil that has many applications. When mixed with a high-quality carrier oil like jojoba, it can be used to minimize wrinkles. If you are feeling angry or irritable and want to give your skin a little TLC, go ahead and grab rose oil. Rose smoothes away tension, particularly the kind of tension associated with a hot day or PMS. This is especially true when placed sparingly on the forehead.
- Helichrysum Oil: Great for bruising, trauma, or to diminish old scars. Use helichrysum as soon as any sign of redness, swelling, or inflammation pops up. This includes signs of deep, cystic acne. Some antiseptic oils can be drying. Helichrysum treats trauma; if you are prone to picking at acne and want to get rid of old scars, helichrysum is the oil for you. Apply neat, meaning no carrier oil required.
- Carrot Seed Oil: Renowned as a revitalizing skin tonic oil, carrot seed treats rashes, dermatitis, and wrinkles. While some people use it internally for detoxification, carrot seed oil will firm and refresh the skin when applied topically. When used with helichrysum, you can begin imagining old scars away. The combination is unbeatable.
5. Acupuncture Can Erase Wrinkles — So Can an At-Home Facial Massage
Acupuncture is touted as one of the safest methods for facial rejuvenation. No toxic injections. No stitches left in the aftermath. The acupuncture needle itself is more slender than a single hair. So how is it that acupuncture — if so minimal — can have such a smoothing effect on laugh lines and sagging skin?
We know that when an acupuncture point is stimulated with a needle, the fascia and muscle tissue will actually loop around the needle. The stimulation generated by an acupuncture needle can reduce pain while promoting the flow of blood and lymph fluid. In traditional Chinese Medicine, acupuncture has long been used as a cosmetic treatment to improve skin texture, tighten pores, tone facial muscles, and decrease sagging of the chin, cheeks, eyes, and neck.7 In 2015, researchers discovered that the Jae-Seng style of acupuncture may help to visibly improve smile lines and eye wrinkles.8
Acupressure and massage are as common in China as acupuncture.
Tips for at-home acupressure for beautiful skin include:
- Your face alone has over 40 acupoints on it. Many of these points are located around the eyes, against what is called the orbital ridge, and on the forehead.
- Start by placing firm, direct pressure on these areas with the tips of the index fingers. Begin at the centerline and work outward. Apply pressure, count to four, and then move on.
- With firm pressure, gently use both hands to massage the entire face. Work up and out (defying gravity’s tendency to shrink in and down). Start with the index fingers on the bridge of the nose and circle up the forehead, along the hairline, and down the cheeks and jawline.
If these natural beauty tips prove anything, it’s that you only look as good as you feel. Caring for your body from the inside while nurturing your skin on the outside can leave you feeling — and looking — like your best self.
What To Remember Most About This Article:
Your skin is a perfect reflection of your inner health. While it's important to nourish your skin internally, you can use the following tips to beautify your skin both inside and out:
- Get your beauty sleep. Sleep deprivation will show up immediately in the skin and has been linked to skin aging.
- Limit sugar consumption. Too much sugar in the diet can make delicate skin tissue brittle to cause wrinkling, sagging, and even cellulite. Ujido Matcha Green Tea is a calming drink that can help to balance the body, with the potential to naturally reduce sugar cravings.
- Add more beneficial bacteria. Skin health is entirely dependent on the health of your digestive tract, and gut-friendly probiotics can provide topical benefits too. Try a probiotic-rich kefir or fermented vegetable juice face mask overnight to revive a dull and tired complexion.
- Use essential oils for advanced healing. While essential oils should be used with caution, rose, helichrysum, and carrot seed oil may all provide skin smoothing and strengthening benefits.
- Try acupuncture to safely erase wrinkles. Acupuncture, acupressure, and massage will stimulate circulation and refresh aging skin — without the need for surgery.
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- University Hospitals Case Medical Center. "Sleep deprivation linked to aging skin, study suggests." ScienceDaily.
- Carroll, Judith E., Steven W. Cole, Teresa E. Seeman, Elizabeth C. Breen, Tuff Witarama, Jesusa M.g. Arevalo, Jeffrey Ma, and Michael R. Irwin. "Partial Sleep Deprivation Activates the DNA Damage Response (DDR) and the Senescence-associated Secretory Phenotype (SASP) in Aged Adult Humans." Brain, Behavior, and Immunity 51 (2016): 223-29.
- "Fructose Consumption May Accelerate Aging -- Skin's Elasticity And Softness May Be Affected." American Society for Technion - Israel Institute of Technology.
- Cindy W. Leung, Barbara A. Laraia, Belinda L. Needham, David H. Rehkopf, Nancy E. Adler, Jue Lin, Elizabeth H. Blackburn, Elissa S. Epel. Soda and Cell Aging: Associations Between Sugar-Sweetened Beverage Consumption and Leukocyte Telomere Length in Healthy Adults From the National Health and Nutrition Examination Surveys. American Journal of Public Health, 2014; e1 DOI: 10.2105/AJPH.2014.302151.
- Kimoto-Nira, Y. Nagakura, C. Kodama, T. Shimizu, M. Okuta, K. Sasaki, N. Koikawa, K. Sakuraba, C. Suzuki, Y. Suzuki. Effects of ingesting milk fermented by Lactococcus lactis H61 on skin health in young women: A randomized double-blind study. Journal of Dairy Science, 2014; 97 (9): 5898 DOI: 10.3168/jds.2014-7980.
- Matsumoto, M., Kurihara, S., Kibe, R., Ashida, H. & Benno, Y. Longevity in mice is promoted by probiotic-induced suppression of colonic senescence dependent on upregulation of gut bacterial polyamine production. PLoS ONE 6, e23652 (2011).
- Aesthet Surg J. 2005 Jul-Aug;25(4):419-24. doi: 10.1016/j.asj.2005.05.001.
- Evid Based Complement Alternat Med. 2015; 2015: 273909.
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