People are now living longer than ever. However, with that comes the signs of aging that many individuals would prefer to delay as long as possible. Although there are many products on the market that claim they alone have “unlocked the secret” of retaining a youthful appearance, in reality many of the ingredients that seem to work such miracles can also be found in the foods we eat. Additionally, there are many routines that can also help ensure that the signs of aging do not diminish your appearance prematurely.
There are several simple strategies you can use when determining how to keep your skin healthy and young looking as you age.
1. Wash and Moisturizer Your Face Daily
Environmental debris can take a real toll on your skin even though you may not see it. Dermatologists now recommend that you wash your face with a soft facial scrub each night before going to bed. Pat it dry then apply a nighttime moisturizer. In the morning just rinse you face with warm water without soap as it will dry out your skin as you age.
2. Change Your Diet
The foods you eat will have a huge impact on how to keep your skin healthy:
- Carrots and tomatoes contain beta-carotene which turns into vitamin A when eaten. The vitamin promotes skin cell growth and builds collagen. Citrus fruits contain vitamin C which is an antioxidant and promotes the development of collagen.
- The pith of lemons (the white part) also contains bioflavonoids that strengthen capillaries while reducing broken veins.
- Nuts contain essential fatty acids that naturally moisturize the skin while promoting skin firmness.
- Avocados not only contain antioxidants and vitamin C but can be used externally as a mask as well as internally.
3. Eliminate Bad Habits
Smoking, drinking and drugs will ravage the skin over time. Smokers develop more lines and wrinkles than non-smokers because the chemicals contained in cigarettes cut off the small capillaries that serve to feed the skin. They also prevent the absorption of vitamins while breaking down collagen.
Alcohol enlarges the blood vessels near the surface of the skin. It also dehydrates the skin leaving it saggy and looking tired while deepening lines and wrinkles. When it comes to recreational drugs, it’s important to remember that they are “cut” with products that are not good for the body. For example, in 2009 it was found that 70% of cocaine was cut with a de-wormer that led to a skin condition causing crusty, purplish areas of dead skin that often became infected.
4. Get Plenty of Water
Your body can only retain so much of the water that you drink but can retain much more when it’s eaten. How to keep your skin healthy and young looking should always begin with plenty of water throughout the day. However, you should also find foods high in water because they benefit your skin.
Watermelon contains 97% water while zucchini contains 95%. The advantage is that cells can more easily absorb the water in food than the water you drink. Additionally, they are packed with other nutrients that are also good for the skin.
5. Exercise Regularly
Skin is rejuvenated by regular exercise because it promotes blood flow and healthy circulation throughout the body. That allows nutrients to rise to the skin’s surface along with live skin cells that often remain deeply buried. The result is a fresher, younger appearance for a longer period of time. You can also ride your bike, go for a run or even work in your garden. Working up a good sweat is the body’s way of ridding itself of toxic chemicals that build up under the skin.
6. Protect From Sun Damage
When it come to how to keep your skin healthy and young looking, the number 1 cause of premature aging is exposure to UV rays. Damages to skin build up over time and are difficult to reverse. If you can avoid the sun between 10am and 4pm do so. If you do need to go outside then apply a broad spectrum sunscreen with a high SPF 20-30 minutes before you leave home then every 2 hours once outside. Since it’s absorbed quickly into the skin, makeup can be applied on top of it without having to worry about smudges.
Also, whenever you go outside wear long sleeves and pants as well as a hat that has a brim. The material doesn’t have to be heavy, but the tighter the weave the better the protection will be. Finally, remember that even if you can’t see the sun it doesn’t mean that UV rays aren’t penetrating the atmosphere. Being over-cautious is always better than being under-prepared.
7. Rejuvenate Skin During Sleep
Just as important as what you do during the day, getting quality sleep every night is essential to healthy skin. Inadequate or disrupted sleep patterns result in a lackluster appearance. Bags and dark circle under the eyes can also develop. It causes anxiety, depression and irritability that can make it even harder to get good sleep.
When it comes to how to keep your skin healthy and young looking, physical exercise will help reduce stress while producing a healthy type of tiredness. Exercises such as yoga and swimming are excellent ways of de-stressing while aerobic exercise improve oxygenation in the blood which results in a vibrant, healthy appearance.
To sleep well, have a routine bedtime, take a warm bath to help you relax, set aside the “worry list”, don’t watch TV in bed, eat a lighter evening meal, turn down the thermostat and avoid caffeine and nicotine in the evening. Remember that your body repairs your skin while you sleep.
8. Plan Your Meals
Even when life throws you a curve you need to be prepared. That’s especially so when it comes to meals. On days when you’re endlessly busy, have an emergency snack bag in the car you can grab when you don’t have time to stop for a meal. Healthy snacks like nuts and oranges will fill the hunger gap while keeping skin healthy. Skipping meals can cause skin to dry out more quickly while also causing it to age faster. Starting your day off with breakfast and ending with dinner 2-3 hours prior to going to bed plus everything in between should be a priority.
9. Limit Foods Containing Sugar
When looking at ingredient labels it’s amazing how much sugar is added to each item whether it’s spaghetti sauce or cereal. Too much sugar breaks down collagen with a condition called glycation. The result over time is sagging skin. If you need a sweet treat you can always grab a couple of pieces of dried fruit or a piece of dark chocolate. Just remember to limit your intake. Additionally, snack food like fresh broccoli will trick the body into believing that you have eaten something sweet when, in fact, you’ve eaten something healthy.
10. Manage Your Stress
When you’re stressed your body releases a hormone called cortisol that breaks down collagen while causing inflammation. It can also lead to acne flare-ups and facial redness. The tension causes the facial muscles to retract which results in creases in the under-layer of the skin as well as on the surface. The constant tension in the facial muscles results in creases especially between the eyebrows and around the mouth that eventually will become permanent. That makes stress management more important than ever when you’re look for how to keep your skin healthy and young looking.
Deep breathing exercises and yoga, especially facial yoga, should be conducted every day for a short period of time. Remind yourself that nothing is so urgent that it’s worth risking your health or exacerbating the signs of aging over. Finally, set time aside everyday to do something you really enjoy.
Studies find that natural ways of maintaining a healthy, youthful appearance can be just as effective as many of the products now available on the market. In fact, the majority are better for your bodily systems as well. When seeking how to keep your skin healthy and youthful, you probably need look no further than your own home.