I hope that after reading my last post you’ve been thinking a little about the links between nutrition and healthy, clear skin. Over the counter beauty products can only go so far. As the largest detoxifying organ of the body, our skin really is a reflection of what is going on inside. Skin cells turn over every 4-6 weeks so the choices we make can have an impact on our appearance within a relatively short period of time.
Aside from what you eat, here are a few more tips on how to keep your skin smooth, clear and radiant.
1. Hydrate, hydrate, hydrate - I can’t say it enough. Most of us need at least 8 cups of water each day to ensure the delivery of nutrients to all our cells. Water also facilitates optimal digestion and helps prevent constipation. Dehydrated skin will show fine lines, wrinkles and tend to sag. Add some lemon slices to your water to further support your liver and digestive functions and to enhance detoxification. Tastes great, so you’ll probably drink even more!
2. Dry skin brushing - The benefits of dry skin brushing are amazing. Not only is it an excellent way to exfoliate dead skin cells but it also stimulates your lymphatic system and increases circulation. Result is a beautiful, pink glow. Take 5-10 minutes each morning before your shower and begin at the hands and feet; brush gently in a circular fashion, stroking towards the heart. You will love how you feel and how you look!
3. Get moving! - Vigorous movement is another great stimulant for your lymphatic system and circulation, which enhances the detox process in your body. Getting rid of toxins via circulation and sweat helps ease the burden on your liver, leaving your skin to shine. Exercise of course will also release those “feel-good” endorphins which result in better mood, alertness, creativity and energy.
4. Essential oils - Tough day at the office or with the kids? Try soaking in a bath with citrus oils such as lemon and orange to ease a long day’s stress and tension. This kind of relaxation can reduce cortisol, which in turn will improve sleep quality and minimize inflammation. All your body’s cells rejuvenate while you sleep so ensuring you get enough zzzz’s will go a long way in keeping you looking younger and more vibrant.
5. My last tip isn’t a DO but a “DON’T”. Sugar - don’t eat it. Or at least avoid it. Most people don’t realize that sugar can actually accelerate premature aging of skin in a biochemical process that affects collagen and elastin. The rapid rise of blood sugar and the resulting inflammation can show up as a loss in elasticity and in skin that starts to sag and wrinkle. Steer clear not only of excess cookies and candy bars but also white bread and rice, processed cereals and baked goods. You should see results within a couple of weeks.
If it all seems like too many changes, start with one at a time. Go from drinking 4 glasses of water a day to 6, or replace your morning bagel with a green smoothie. Each step you take will bring you one step closer to radiant and glowing skin.