The anti-aging industry is a multi-billion one. Every year men and women spend hundreds of dollars in the hopes of achieving a younger looking visage. The good news for those of us who don’t have major bucks to spend on beauty products there are easy and affordable ways of keeping your young looks. We might not know this but collagen is important in keeping us young looking. It makes skin elastic and wrinkle-free. Collagen is produced by our cells and when we are young our skin is plump and smooth because our skin regenerates collagen regularly. However as we age, collagen production slows down or gets damaged because of sun exposure. The result: wrinkles.
Here are some ways to preserve collagen and help in its production.
Smoking does not only cause health problems but premature ageing too. Smoking creates matrix metalloproteinases (MMPs) which causes sagging skin and wrinkles.
Increase Vit C Intake
Vitamin C commonly found in citrus fruits is crucial in the formation of collagen. The American Journal of Nutrition has discovered that women in their 40’s who have high amounts of Vitamin C in their diet were less likely to have wrinkles. Aside from citrus fruits, Vitamin C is abundant in green leafy vegetables, tomatoes and kiwis.
Over exposure to the sun is the leading cause of collagen loss. UVAs penetrate the skin and cause damage to collagen support structures. The best way to combat this is to apply sunscreen with at least SPF 15 protection.
Cut Back Sweets
Studies have found that the sweet stuff can cause premature aging. Eating too much sugar leads to a process called glycation, causing wrinkly skin and premature aging.
Adding anti-oxidants to normal skin care routine can keep skin young by protecting against free radicals that damage the skin. Free radicals attach themselves to healthy skin cells sucking out the electrons they need leaving the original cell damaged. This process causes collagen breakdown. Anti-oxidants can help neutralize free radicals so it does not have to feed on healthy cells. Consider drinking green tea, eating more green leafy vegetables and looking for products that contain anti-oxidants.
Exfoliation or sloughing off the top layer of the skin speeds up the natural process of skin regeneration and collagen production. Regular exfoliation keeps skin young looking because new skin is always visible. For best results, exfoliate twice a week.
Eat Plant Protein
Eating plant protein is especially important during menopause years. Estrogen is important in making collagen and as we age, estrogen levels drop causing creases and wrinkles to appear. Eating foods that contain plant estrogen (phytoestrogens) can help replace lost estrogen. Eat hummus, nuts, soy and pinto beans and look for skin care products containing phytoestrogens.
Increase blood flow to the face by getting a facial massage. Massaging face daily can help boost production of collagen and reduce the appearance of wrinkles. It also stimulates the lymph glands to promote clear skin.