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Experts Say These Anti-Aging Foods Can Help Your Skin

Experts Say Anti-Aging Foods Can Help Your SkinYour skin is a living, breathing organism that changes with time. As you get older, your skin loses tightness and elasticity, leading to wrinkles, discoloration, and a general loss of skin tone and vivacity.1 While there’s nothing inherently wrong with more defined crow’s feet and laugh lines, you may find yourself wanting to slow down the aging process. While there are no proven methods for completely reversing the aging process, experts suggest that you may potentially be able to prevent or reduce signs of aging by watching what you eat.2 Read on to learn more about anti-aging foods.

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Advanced Glycation End Products and Aging

Advanced glycation end products (AGEs), also known as glycotoxins, accumulate as you get older, contributing not only to your wrinkles and fine lines, but potentially heart problems, vision issues, and other conditions associated with getting older.2 AGEs are produced naturally when sugar molecules bind to proteins, lipids, or nucleic acids.3 Advanced glycation end products can be created endogenously when you have high blood sugar levels or come directly from foods that you eat.2

High levels of AGEs can accumulate in tissue and contribute to oxidative stress and inflammation. AGEs can bind to cell receptors or crosslink with proteins, including collagen in your skin, resulting in wrinkles, a loss in elasticity, and discoloration.2

Foods That Will Increase AGEs

Advanced glycation end products are naturally present in animal-derived foods, though the act of cooking causes the formation of even more AGEs in those foods. Most notably, grilling, frying, roasting, searing, and broiling are known to accelerate and propagate greater AGE formation. High amounts of AGEs are also found in high-fat and aged cheeses, as well as high-fat spreads, including:

  • Butter
  • Cream cheese
  • Margarine
  • Mayonnaise3

Processed foods are also high in AGEs, and foods high in refined sugar will contribute to more glycation, resulting in more AGEs.1

Reducing AGE Consumption

Eating raw foods is the most direct way to reduce your AGE consumption, but when eating raw is not safe or feasible, consider different cooking methods. Cooking at lower temperatures reduces AGE formation, as does cooking with “moist heat,” meaning boiling, steaming, stewing, or poaching. Using acidic solutions, like a marinade containing lemon juice or vinegar, can also reduce AGE formation. Studies show that beef marinated for an hour in an acidic marinade formed less than half the amount of AGEs compared to beef cooked without the marinade.3

Anti-Inflammatory Foods

Inflammation, whether it’s from AGEs or UV rays, is one of the biggest culprits for skin aging.4 Incorporating more anti-inflammatory foods into your diet may help to counteract and reduce inflammation.

Turmeric

The main active component of turmeric is curcumin, a yellow pigment compound that features natural antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties. Curcumin actively inhibits enzymes that play a role in the inflammatory response.5 When studied for its effects on skin, turmeric was found to help improve symptoms of common skin conditions when administered orally or topically.6

Garlic

Garlic contains a complex combination of compounds that may stimulate the immune system while inhibiting pro-inflammatory activity.7 Studies on garlic in dermatology show that oral administration helped to increase blood flow to skin capillaries, prevent oxidative stress, and protect against UVB radiation.8

Ginger

Ginger has a rich phytochemistry that includes gingerols, shogaol, and paradols, all of which may present powerful anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties.9

Dark Leafy Greens

Dark leafy greens, which include kale, spinach, cabbage, and broccoli, are naturally high in nutrients and fiber, which may contribute to gut health and general well-being. Studies also suggest that leafy greens present powerful anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties.10

Cold Water Fish

Sardines, salmon, and other cold water fish possess high levels of omega-3 fatty acids. Omega-3s are an important constituent of cell membranes and allow for the regulation of pro-inflammatory components.11

Healthy Fats

Your skin cells are wrapped in a fat layer or fat cushion that provides your skin with its moisture and tightness. As you age, this fat layer gradually depletes resulting in more skin sagging and wrinkles. Supplying your skin cells with healthy fats keeps this fat layer robust and may prevent common signs of skin aging.1

Vitamin A

Retinol and retinoids are a common topical form of vitamin A, but it’s important to incorporate foods rich in vitamin A, including carrots and kale.1

Vitamin E

Vitamin E is another fat-soluble vitamin that is good for general skin health and may combat signs of skin aging. Vitamin E is readily found in nuts, seeds, and leafy greens.1

Omega-3 Fatty Acids

Along with their anti-inflammatory potential, omega-3s help to nourish and plump up your skin. Omega-3s can be found in fatty fish, chia seeds, and walnuts.1

Antioxidant-Rich Foods

Dermatologists agree that antioxidants play an important role in reducing free-radical damage and maintaining healthy skin. Antioxidants work by regulating intracellular signaling pathways that contribute to skin damage. Antioxidants also help to protect against sun damage, prevent wrinkles, and reduce inflammation.12 Common food sources high in antioxidants include:

  • Dark chocolate
  • Berries
  • Green veggies
  • Matcha/green tea

Along with food sources, consider taking antioxidant-rich supplements, including:

  • CoQ10 – In a double-blind, placebo controlled trial, patients given a CoQ10 supplement showed improvements in seasonal viscoelasticity deterioration and reductions in some visible signs of aging, including fewer wrinkles and micro-relief lines and improved skin smoothness.13

  • Resveratrol – A powerful antioxidant common to grapes, resveratrol has been shown to protect against oxidative stress, ultraviolet radiation, and general skin damage.14

  • Milk thistle – Silymarin, the standardized form of milk thistle extract, has been shown to promote wound healing and anti-inflammatory activity by inhibiting pro-inflammatory cytokines.15

  • Probiotics – Probiotics support healthy gut bacteria and may have the potential to prevent skin issues, regulate skin hypersensitivity, protect against UV damage, and promote wound healing.16

General Tips to Reduce Skin Aging

Along with anti-aging foods and supplements, consider these general tips to reduce skin aging:

  • Always wear sunscreen and keep your skin covered during peak hours to prevent UV damage
  • Consider topical retinoids, which may boost collagen production, reduce oil production, break up clogged pores, and increase skin cell turnover
  • Moisturize and hydrate your skin to keep it plump and supple
  • Avoid products that dry out or irritate skin, particularly any products that include alcohol/ethanol
  • Use exfoliating peels containing glycolic, salicylic, or lactic acids to remove dead skin cells and brighten your complexion
  • Manage your stress levels
  • Maintain a healthy sleep schedule

It’s impossible to completely reverse the effects of time, but with the right foods and some simple lifestyle modifications, you can keep your skin looking and feeling youthful while improving your general health and wellness. If you’re not sure where to start, consider an anti-inflammatory supplement, like DrFormulas™ Turmeric Curcumin capsules.

 

Prebiotics for Healthy Skin

 

Sources:

  1. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wCL223TInH4
  2. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OyfTrelvEIU
  3. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3704564/
  4. https://www.nia.nih.gov/about/living-long-well-21st-century-strategic-directions-research-aging/inflammation-plays
  5. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/17569207
  6. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/27213821
  7. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4417560/
  8. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4211483/
  9. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3665023/
  10. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6316011/
  11. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3257651/
  12. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/23135663
  13. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/27548886
  14. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3060966/
  15. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6337225/
  16. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/24364369