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Who says beauty is only skin deep?
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.
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.
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.
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:
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.
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:
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:
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.
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:
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