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SUGAR AND SKIN AGING

Woman eating cake outside

While sugar can often be incredibly satisfying, we all know that too much of this sweet substance can be a bad thing. However, in addition to leading to everything from obesity to infectious diseases, sugar also hugely contributes to the aging process, causing wrinkles and sagging skin far earlier than you would have otherwise experienced.

Glycation 

When sugar molecules attach themselves to collagen fibers, this process is called glycation, and is something that you will want to minimize as much as possible. This is because, once the sugar is attached to the collagen, it weakens the collagen, causing the fibers to lose their flexibility or strength. This means that the skin becomes less elastic and smooth, and is much more susceptible to everything from wrinkles and fine lines to sagging and sun damage. In addition to sugar, there are other carbohydrates that quickly convert into glucose once they enter your bloodstream, leading to glycation, and these include breads, starches, pasta and potatoes.

 

Insulin Resistance and Dark Patches 

Each time you eat sugar, your body releases insulin, which enables the sugar to be stored in your cells to be used later. Over time, with a diet high in sugar, you are likely to end up with insulin resistance, as well as Type 2 diabetes. One of the symptoms of insulin resistance is dark patches and skin tags. These are often referred to as common side effects of aging, but, if you cut back on the amount of sugar that you consume, you will be far less likely to experience them.

 

How to Minimize and Prevent Sugar Damage 

The first step to preventing glycation from occurring is by cutting back on your sugar intake. This includes sugar in all of its forms, whether it be granulated, high fructose corn syrup, or cane sugar, as they all have the same effect. You should also look into vitamin supplements, especially B1 and B6, as these are able to minimize the damage that is caused when sugar molecules attach themselves to collagen fibers. Vitamin C is also incredibly useful when it comes to damaged collagen and skin healing, but, rather than taking a supplement, try to increase your consumption of vitamin C-rich foods instead, making fruits and vegetables such as oranges, red peppers, kale and broccoli a main part of your diet. Another fantastic ingredient for fighting against glycation is alpha lipoic acid, also referred to as ALA. While it can be taken both as an internal supplement as well as applied topically, try to do both if you are looking for maximum results.

 

There is no denying the impact that sugar has when it comes to skin aging, making it important for you to pay close attention to your sugar consumption if you have any aging concerns. From choosing healthy foods and drinks to increasing your antioxidant intake, working to prevent sugar damage now will definitely pay off in the long run.

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SEVEN RULES FOR A HEALTHY LIFESTYLE

two girls running

A healthy lifestyle is key when it comes to a long and happy life, but when it comes to making healthy lifestyle choices, many people end up struggling, and then give up on their healthy lifestyle aspirations. If you have been looking to make a few healthy changes in your life, here are seven rules to get you started.

Regular Exercise 

Regular exercise is key when it comes to healthy living, with the recommended amount being 30 minutes of aerobic exercise at least five days a week. Even if you do not enjoy working out at the gym, make the effort to take a brisk walk every evening, as even this small step will have a huge influence on your overall health.

Diet and Nutrition 

The food that you eat has a direct impact on your health, and you should really be trying to eat as many fresh and whole foods as possible. From a variety of fresh fruits and vegetables, in a wide range of colors, to brown rice and whole wheat bread, instead of the refined alternatives, start making healthier choices when it comes to the food that you put into your body.

No Smoking 

Every year in the USA, smoking kills one in five people, and even if you would only consider yourself to be a social smoker, smoking occasionally is still causing irreparable damage to your body. This is the most preventable cause of death and disease out there, so, if smoking is one of your vices, then this is a habit that you need to kick as soon as possible if you are trying to be healthier.

Get Enough Sleep 

Sleep is just as important as nutrition and exercise when it comes to healthy living, as sleep deprivation will quickly lead to a variety of health problems, from heart disease to diabetes. The average adult needs about seven to nine hours of sleep each night, and you should wake up feeling fresh and energized rather than tired and groggy.

Manage Your Stress Levels 

Chronic stress keeps the body’s cortisol levels elevated, which then results in a range of health issues, from a decreased metabolism to depression. There are many ways in which you can manage your stress levels, and the key here is to find the method that works best for you, whether this may be doing some exercise or spending time on a hobby that you love.

Drink Enough Water 

Water plays so many crucial roles within the body, from eliminating toxins to increasing energy to stimulating brain functions, and is actually your most important nutrient. The recommended water intake for the average person is two litres a day, so make sure that you are drinking at least that.

Take Some Time Out 

Your brain works so hard each and every day, and deserves to have a breather once in a while. Whether you regularly enjoy a weekend getaway, or take up yoga and meditation, try to find ways in which you can encourage your brain to relax and unwind.

Healthy living does not need to be difficult, no matter how unhealthy your current lifestyle may be. By setting yourself small, achievable goals, you will slowly be able to work towards a healthier, and happier, lifestyle.

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WHAT AND WHEN TO EAT FOR ANTI-AGING

women eating

The food that you eat has a direct impact on your health, which is why those who have a healthy diet throughout their lives generally experience the signs of aging at a later stage in life. If you want to ensure that your diet will keep you looking and feeling as young as possible, here are the foods that you should be eating more of, as well as a few tips on meal timings.

Beans, Peas and Lentils

Beans, peas and lentils are packed with protein, fiber, vitamins and minerals, as well as certain plant polyphenols that have been proven to have incredible protective benefits, especially for the heart. All that is needed to lower your risk of heart disease by 14% is two cups of beans, peas, lentils or tofu each week. This is also a fantastic source of soluble fibre, which helps to control cholesterol levels.

Whole Grains 

Carbohydrates may have a bad reputation, but whole grains actually bring with them so many different benefits. From reducing the risk of cancer, diabetes, obesity, heart disease and respiratory problems, to keeping the body young and healthy, whole grains should always be chosen instead of refined carbohydrates.

Oily Fish 

Oily fish, such as sardines, mackerel and salmon, are packed with omega-3 fatty acids, which not only protect the heart and brain, but also fight inflammation, something that hugely contributes to accelerated aging. While there may be many omega-3 supplements out there, studies have shown that these tend to have quite mixed results, meaning that the very best way to ensure that you are receiving your necessary dose of omega-3 is by eating eight ounces of oily fish a week, preferably ones that have been sustainably farmed.

Meal Timings and Fasting

There are a number of studies that have discovered that your meal timings can actually have quite the impact on the way in which your body processes the food. Research has shown that those who consume 50% of their calories at lunchtime, and then 20% at dinner, experienced more weight loss, by 33%, than those who ate 50% of their calories at dinner. In addition to this, intermittent fasting throughout the week, such as limiting your calorie intake for one or two days of the week, could also bring with it many anti-aging benefits, although further research is still needed in this area.

In addition to including more anti-aging foods into your diet, you should also try to cut out the foods that will only age you faster. From processed meats to refined carbohydrates to pre-packaged meals that are high in sodium, swap these out for healthier alternatives, and it will not be long before you begin noticing the improvements in your skin.

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BLEMISH FIGHTING FOODS

Blemish Fighting Foods Infographic

It can be very frustrating when you’ve been following a skin care routine diligently and still see some pimples popping up. You thought you had been doing everything right – cleansing twice a day, using oil free moisturizers, exfoliating regularly – but still feel like your skin isn’t where you want it to be. Amp up your fight against acne by feasting on blemish fighting foods. These dietary superstars can help you along your road to clear and blemish free skin!

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DIGESTION AND YOUR SKIN

Digestion and Your Skin Infographic

The statement reads “you are what you eat” and it couldn’t be more true. By the time you discover that what you eat is one of the most important things for your skin and decide to get serious about your diet, it could already be too late. But, at the same time, you can take pleasure in the fact that it isn’t too late to start repairing the damage that has already been caused to your skin. The only thing that you need to understand is that it is no longer about what you eat. It has more to do with what your digestive system allows you to eat! This beautiful infographic from OROGOLD Cosmetics highlights the connection between digestion and your skin.

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