Vitamins as skin tonics
- Vitamins are very important nutrients that play an important role in maintaining healthy skin.
- Vitamin C helps build collagen, that holds the body’s cells together. Deficiency of this vitamin can cause bruising, loss of skin elasticity, poor healing of cuts and scrapes, and dry skin. Just one daily glass of orange juice supplies all the vitamin C required.
- B–vitamins found in whole grains, milk and wheat helps speed wound healing and prevent dry, flaky or oily skin.
- Vitamin A found in dark orange or green vegetables and fruits maintains epithelial tissues such as skin, thus helping to prevent premature wrinkling or bumpy, sandpaper like skin.
- Vitamin D in milk might help relieve symptoms of psoriasis.
- Zinc in meat, seafood and legumes aids in the healing of cuts and scrapes.
- Water keeps the skin moist and regulates normal function of the oil glands.
Your skin needs a constant supply of water and oxygen. Supplying these and other nutrients to the skin and removing waste products requires a healthy blood supply. It takes an ample amount of many nutrients to build and maintain healthy red blood cells and other blood factors. Those nutrients include protein, iron and copper, plus folic acid, other B vitamins and vitamins C and E. Deficiency of any of these, especially iron, reduces the oxygen-carrying capacity of the blood, suffocating the skin and leaving it pale and drawn.
Antioxidants: Anti–aging and anti–cancer
Most of the aging of the skin is a result of long term exposure to sun, tobacco smoke, and ozone. Environmental pollutants generate highly damaging oxygen fragments, called Free Radicals, that erode skin much like water rusts metal. Free radicals also damage collagen, the protein latticework that maintains the skin’s firmness and suppleness. The result is a condition called Photoaging, which includes dryness, loss of elasticity, and the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles.
Free radicals generated by sun exposure also damage the genetic structure of skin cells, which contributes to the development of cancer. Antioxidant nutrients, including vitamins C and E and beta carotene, show promise in slowing the rate of free radical damage to the skin. People who consume five or more antioxidant–rich foods – Spinach, sweet potatoes, tomatoes, cantaloupe, grapefruit, carrots, these health–enhancing nutrients in their tissues and develop fewer skin cancers. Of course, the antioxidants are effective only if you combine this healthful diet with other risk–control habits, such as using sunscreen lotions.
The dietary guidelines for healthy, youthful skin are simple.
- Consume at least 2,000 calories of minimally processed foods daily – Including fresh fruits and vegetables, whole grain breads and cereals, and cooked dried beans and peas, with two to three servings of nonfat milk and a small amount of extra–lean meat or fish.
- Include several servings daily of antioxidant–rich foods, such as oranges for vitamin C, dark green leafy vegetables and apricots for beta carotene, and wheat germ for vitamin E.
- Include one linoleic acid–rich food in your daily diet, such as safflower oil, nuts, avocado or seeds.
- Drink 6 to 8 glasses of water daily.
- Avoid repeated bouts of weight loss and regain, since weight cycling can result in premature sagging, stretch marks and wrinkling.
- Take a moderate dose of vitamin and mineral supplement that contains extra amounts of the antioxidant vitamins.
- When outdoors, wear a hat, use sunscreen and apply one of the new antioxidant–rich creams that contain vitamin E and C.
Mandelic Acid is an alpha hydroxy acid that is derived from the bittersweet almond. This allows the dead, dry skin to be removed, revealing younger, fresher skin underneath. Results are seen within weeks and skin will continue to improve with regular use. The higher the concentration and the lower the pH of alpha hydroxy acids, the stronger the product. This is recommended for younger, more active adults and even teenagers.
Retinol is a form of vitamin–A. Vitamin–A is known for its ability to penetrate the outer layers of the skin to work on and improve the damaged layers of collagen and elastin underneath. This product is effective on fine lines and wrinkles, and tightening skin tone.
Glycolic Acid is another alpha hydroxy acid that is derived from sugarcane which allows it to penetrate deep into the skin. A mild to moderate stinging or burning is felt upon application that may irritate sensitive skin, but is tolerable enough for those with normal skin. This is a great system for mature adults with fair skin.
Vitamin C is an antioxidant that helps fight free radicals. Free radicals are scavengers in the skin that damage skin tissue and cause aging. This action helps prevent and slow down aging, while the vitamin C also helps smooth out existing wrinkles and tighten loosened skin tone.