We all know by now, the factors that age us. The obvious no-no’s are smoking, excessive alcohol consumption, too much sugar, lack of exercise, and sun exposure without SPF. There are also things we can do to enhance our youth in terms of the way we look and feel that don’t involve a visit to the plastic surgeon or dermatologist for fillers and Botox, going under the knife or wallet busting designer products.
New York-based Board-certified internist, Dr. Durga Sunitha Posina is the “beauty internist.” She shares how to stay young from the inside out with these insider tips.
Collagen peptide supplements
As we age, our bodies start producing less of our most abundant protein: collagen." Found in our bones, cartilage, tendons, ligaments, and skin, collagen helps cells adhere to one another and contribute to the skin's strength and elasticity. Since we produce less of it over time, our skin starts to look dry, saggy, and wrinkly--the most common signs of aging.
That's where collagen peptide supplements come into play. While you can receive more collagen through topical creams and serums, you can also take it in pill and powder forms. The supplement is synthesized into protein chains called collagen hydrolysates and gets absorbed into the bloodstream, and used directly by skin cells. Several studies have found that women who took collagen peptide supplements saw improvement in their dryness and a significant increase in skin elasticity. Additionally, taking collagen may boost the production of other proteins that help build your skin, such as elastin and fibrillin.
Lymphatic drainage massage
Want glowing skin without skincare cream, serums, or cosmetic enhancements? Try lymphatic drainage massages. The lymphatic system's main role is to drain toxins out of our body and prevent infections. Whenever there's an obstruction in the lymphatic system, extra fluid builds up, causing the nodes to swell. When we're sick, doctors will feel the lymph nodes below your neck for tenderness. But, did you know we have lymph nodes that swell in our faces, too? Lymphatic drainage massage gets toxins out of the body, increases circulation, pushes blood to flow to the face and makes your skin glow. Dr. Posina suggests using light pressure and gently stretching the areas above the eyebrow, forehead, cheek area, jowls, and above the lip. Direct your motions towards your ears and lower neck, explains Dr. Posina as this is where your primary lymph nodes are located around your face.
You might be tired of hearing this, but you should be getting a full night's rest. "Over time, prolonged sleep disruptions have been linked to a speed-up in the aging process." Without enough deep sleep, your skin doesn't get the repair and restoration it needs, attributing to reduced skin elasticity, uneven pigmentation, and dark under-eye bags. Dr. Posina also warns that if you continuously sleep on the same side of your face, your facial skin will age more rapidly." Have you ever woken up with pillow crease marks on your face? You're wrinkling and deforming the skin's collagen, impending circulation to the skin which could make the creases permanent. In addition to being aware of how long and the position you sleep in, you should also watch out for sleeping pills. If you struggle with insomnia sleeping pills can cause insomnia when you stop taking them." Instead, find natural ways to help you sleep through the night like herbal teas or meditation.
One of the biggest causes of premature aging is stress. The stress hormone cortisol makes our blood sugar levels skyrocket. Drying out the skin and making it appear dull. It also affects how collagen is produced and stored, further damaging the elasticity and strength of your skin. Comprehensive studies have been conducted to determine mediation's role in stress reduction and its potential for anti-aging. Meditating 15 to 45 minutes a day, regularly is known to help reduce stress and promotes better sleep. With less cortisol in our system, the 24-hour stress chemical cycle is reversed, or in other words, the aging process stagnates.
It may sound like a joke, but if you want youthful-looking skin, the answer might be marinara sauce. Tomatoes contain a powerful nutrient called lycopene, which has antioxidant properties to calm inflammation, reduce sun damage, and fight back against fine lines. Although you can find lycopene in a few red fruits and vegetables, it's most abundant in tomatoes. If you're looking for a great food-derived antioxidant, lycopene not only quenches free radicals but also induces the body's protection mechanism against oxidative stress and inflammation.