Written by Chelsea DeColle, CNP
Everyone wants to have beautiful skin and a healthy “glow’ but it can be confusing to understand the best ways to achieve this with so much information out there about skin care/health. Add to that, the fact that the world around us is constantly telling us not to age, and also aging us every single day in different ways. While it may be impossible to stop time or reverse the aging process, caring for your skin and your whole body can go a long way to helping you look (and feel) youthful and healthy as long as possible.
The health of our skin is both a reflection of our inner health and the external influences around us. There may be many factors that we cannot control like our genetics and environmental conditions including weather and pollution, but there are a number of things that we can understand and then take control of for our skin health. Factors like our diet and hydration status, supplement use, and toxin exposure from the environment or skin care products are things that we can influence and change ourselves.
With these 3 simple steps you can achieve beautiful skin naturally:
1) Nourish your skin
Your skin needs nourishment from the inside out! Since both our diet and our hydration status can influence and affect our skin condition, this is the first place to start in caring for your skin. Choosing foods that are fresh, whole (unprocessed), and full of bright colours will provide a rich assortment of the essential vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants that your skin needs to maintain it’s healthy glow. Drinking adequate amounts of hydrating fluids (think water, herbal tea, or juice) is key to keep skin hydrated, bright and clear.1 Limit or avoid processed and refined foods as well as caffeine and alcohol as they can contribute to skin issues and can cause dehydration.2
2) Protect your skin
Skin is the largest organ in your body! The skin is the first line of defense for your body as it encounters all kinds of potentially harmful threats from the environment. Sun exposure, weather, pollution containing allergens and irritants, and toxins from personal/skin care products all have a negative impact on our skin and body. Because the skin plays such an important role in protection, we must ensure that we are alsoworking to protect it. Limit excess UV exposure from the sun and harsh weather conditions that can dry it out skin and cause damage. Avoid personal and skin care products that are filled with chemicals and toxins and know what’s in the products you use for your body and your home. Look for all natural, chemical free skin care and be sure to keep your skin properly hydrated and moisturized to support and maintain its protective barrier.
3) Support your skin
Food alone may not be providing all the nutrients your skin needs to look its best, so this is where a few key supplements come in for added support. Collagen is an abundant protein in the body that is integral to the structure and youthful appearance of our skin but, as we age, we lose 1% of collagen per year after the age of 20.3 Since we can’t slow down the aging process, the solution is to supplement with collagen like Smart Solutions Active Collagen, which is a marine sourced collagen supplement that can help to support healthy skin. Inflammation is another common concern with the skin and can be supported and reduced using essential fatty acids.4,5Borage oil is an excellent source of the essential fatty acid Omega-6 and has powerful anti-inflammatory effects particularly for the skin.5 Smart Solutions GLA oil provides the skin with anti-inflammatory benefits of Omega-6 while also supporting skin hydration and elasticity.
Incorporate these 3 simple steps and supplements into your daily routine for healthy, youthful skin at every age.
- Palma, L., Marques, L. T., Bujan, J., & Rodrigues, L. M. (2015). Dietary water affects human skin hydration and biomechanics. Clinical, cosmetic and investigational dermatology, 8, 413–421. https://doi.org/10.2147/CCID.S86822
- Katta, R., & Desai, S. P. (2014). Diet and dermatology: the role of dietary intervention in skin disease. The Journal of clinical and aesthetic dermatology, 7(7), 46–51.
- Varani, J., et al. (2006). Decreased collagen production in chronologically aged skin: roles of age-dependent alteration in fibroblast function and defective mechanical stimulation. The American journal of pathology, 168(6), 1861–1868.
- 4. Brosche T., Platt D. (2000) Effect of borage oil consumption on fatty acid metabolism, transepidermal water loss and skin parameters in elderly people.Arch Gerontol Geriatr. Mar-Apr;30(2):139-50.
- Jung et al. (2014). Effect of Dietary Supplementation with Omega-3 Fatty Acid and Gamma-linolenic Acid on Acne Vulgaris: A Randomised, Doubleblind, Controlled Trial. Acta Derm Venerol,94, 521-525.