Balancing Internal Health to Attain External Beauty

by admin on September 1, 2015

internal_medicine

Balancing Internal Health to Attain External Beauty

1st in a Series: Growing Great Skin From the Inside Out

The skin is a vital organ that covers and protects our entire body. It is subject to internal and external health as well as environmental factors. For example, when our skin is dry, discolored, lacking in tone, or presents an ailment (i.e. acne, eczema, rosacea, or premature wrinkles), it is a sign that something is off balance within the body. When we take a deeper look at the connections with the entire body, we find that many skin imperfections stem from internal health problems. In addition, an increasing amount of research has emerged that confirms that what we put into our bodies/ what we eat affects skin quality. Not only is the skin a reflection of what is happening inside the body, but products you put on your skin affect internal health as well.  In the first article of this series, we will take a look at the five main causes that lead to imperfect skin: elasticity, oxidative damage, inflammation, glycation, and hormone imbalance. The goal is to stop dermatological problems before they start by enhancing skin from the inside-out.  We want to create glowing skin and vibrant health.

 

Let’s familiarize ourselves with the most probable causes of skin damage. This will help us understand the way our skin interacts with internal health and environmental factors.

 

Elasticity

Elasticity is what keeps our skin tight and wrinkle-free. Collagen comprises 70 to 80 percent of skin’s dry weight and gives the dermis its structure. Elastin is a small part of dermis but gives skin elasticity. As we age, collagen and elastin fibers in the skin deteriorate causing a loss in elasticity; we begin to see major deterioration after the age of 60. There are some hereditary disorders that can cause collagen or elastin deficiency and thus, accelerate aging. However, sun exposure is one of the main culprits causing collagen and elastin damage that can onset aging as early as 20 years of age.

 

Oxidative Damage

Oxidative damage refers to the imbalance between the production of free radicals and the ability of the body to counteract or detoxify their harmful effects through neutralization by antioxidants. You can think of free radial damage to the skin in the same way that water rusts metal. Free radical damage not only accelerates aging but it also takes a toll on organs and increases the possibilities of developing chronic diseases.

 

Inflammation

When something enters the body that the immune system detects as foreign, such as bacteria or a virus, then histamine – which is made and stored in the white blood cells – acts as an inflammatory mediator. Skin inflammation can make the skin more sensitive and cause you to be more susceptible to eczema, dermatitis, psoriasis, acne, rosacea, and other skin issues. Skin inflammation often stems from digestive issues.

 

Glycation

The body uses glucose as a primary source of fuel, but if it is not used and metabolized properly, glucose can bind to your skin’s collagen and elastin. This binding process will make your skin rigid and less elastic. Thus, skin will have a propensity to be cracked, thin, red, and with a weakened ability to repair itself. In other words, glycation will cause wrinkles and accelerated aging. Glycation is caused by both genetic factors and lifestyle choices. Limiting the consumption of glucose and fructose is the primary defense against glycation.

 

 

Hormone Imbalance

Hormones are biochemical messengers used by the endocrine system to communicate with itself and the rest of the body systems. Hormones are derived from amino acids, phospholipids, and cholesterol and they play a significant role in many aspects of our health. When our hormones are off balance, we are more likely to develop skin problems such as dry skin, fine lines and wrinkles, as well as, acne or rosacea (sometimes you will experience all of these at once).

 

Take a minute to reflect on your skin’s problem areas and the different sources that may be affecting it. In the next article in the series, coming in October, we will discuss 7 steps to growing great skin. This will give our readers quick tips and great tools to address the 5 main causes of skin imperfections.

Information cited from Glowing Skin, From Within by Dr. Trevor Cates, ND

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