We all love a good spa day but taking care of ourselves is more than skin-deep. Our body has a way of showing us things about our health through our skin and it shouldn’t be ignored.Our skin is the largest organ in our body. It protects us from infection, helps regulate our body temperature, works with the sun to create vitamin D, and sends us a visual indicator when something isn’t quite right inside.
If having radiant skin is your goal, start from the inside out.SLEEP
We all know the importance of getting good sleep when it comes to our mental and physical states. But quality sleep also helps restore skin’s natural beauty. All day our skin works to protect us from sun, pollution, viruses and germs, dehydration and more. During sleep, our skin is able to rebuild and restore itself.
Just one night of poor sleep can cause:
- Droopy eyelids
- Swollen, red eyes
- Dark circles
- Pale, unhealthy looking skin
- Wrinkles and fine lines
Studies have shown that people who slept at least seven hours a night had skin that held moisture better compared to those who slept less.
Skin that retains moisture can help protect, heal, and fight signs of aging. Sleep is also the time when our skin produces collagen to maintain elasticity and prevent wrinkles.
What You Can Do:
- Sleep. Make sure you’re getting at least seven hours of sleep per night. If you need help falling asleep faster and staying asleep longer try a PM audio from the BrainTap Pro App.
- Wash. Cleaning the day’s pollution off your face is almost more important that washing your face in the morning. A good, gentle cleanser that removes dirt and makeup is important to help avoid acne, rashes, infection, inflammation, dry skin and large pores.
- Moisturize. We aren’t suggesting you abandon your daytime routines, but the best time to apply moisturizer and skin care products is at night before bed. The increased blood flow to your skin can help those products work as intended. You should also keep water by your bed. You need to moisturize your insides too.
- Soft. If you’re a side sleeper a satin or silk pillowcase can cut down on wrinkles and facial dryness. For Good Housekeeping’s top five picks, click HERE.
Getting enough good, quality sleep not only helps you look better the next morning but gives your skin time to regenerate and replenish itself, so you have healthy skin for years to come.DIET
What you put in your body directly affects your skin health. A nutritious diet can help you attain that natural, healthy glow we all want.
We can’t avoid getting older, but you can slow the clock by your choices. Diets high in Vitamins A and C and low in unhealthy fats and carbohydrates can improve skin health.Diet affects skin health:
- Acne – your diet triggers acne flare ups. Reducing or eliminating processed foods and sugary sodas can help avoid this.
- Moisture – Drinking water is one of the best things you can do for your skin health.
- Wrinkles – Eating foods with healthy fats can impact skin health by aiding in collagen production for smoother and suppler skin.
- Melanoma – While avoiding over exposure to the sun is the best way to prevent melanoma, eating dark leafy greens and fish has also been shown to protect skin.
Eat Your Way To Healthy Skin
Eating a diet rich in the following nutrients will help maintain a healthy, blemish free complexion.
- Fish. Fish rich in Omega 3s, such as salmon, reduces inflammation that can cause acne and other skin flare ups.
- Avocado. Besides having the healthy fats, avocados help retain moisture and help repair sun damage.
- Nuts. Good nuts like walnuts are rich in omegas and help reduce inflammation. They also have skin boosting nutrients such as Vitamin E and Selenium.
- Sweet Potato. Contains Vitamin A and beta carotene which helps protect your skin from sun damage.
- Red or Yellow Bell Pepper. Contains Vitamin A and C and beta carotene, all of which protect skin from inflammation and sun damage.
- Dark Chocolate. Contains antioxidants that help maintain moisture and prevents skin thinning. One study also found that dark chocolate can help protect from UV radiation.
- Red Grapes. Contain resveratrol which protects the skin from premature aging and sun damage.
How we feel mentally, affects many aspects of our physical body, including our skin health, but the connection between our brains and our skin is rarely recognized.
Chronic levels of stress can affect skin health, causing problems or exaggerating existing conditions, such as:
When we’re stressed, the brain and the skin are both stimulated, and the following actions occur:
- Hormones like cortisol and adrenaline are released
- Inflammation is triggered
- Wound healing is impaired
- Aging is accelerated
- Skin conditions such as acne, eczema and psoriasis are triggered
Stress can also affect the immune system and trigger cytokines, which triggers inflammatory skin diseases. When our mental health is suffering the skin can manifest that with physiological changes.
8 Ways Stress Affects Skin:
- Overproduction of cortisol leads to overproduction of sebum or oil in skin which causes acne breakouts.
- Impacts the immune system which causes reactive skin and triggers rashes, hives, and redness.
- Leads to flare ups of rosacea, eczema and psoriasis.
- Nervous or anxious behaviors such as picking at or scratching of the skin.
- Increased sebum production which causes acne.
- Increased erythema (rash).
- Increase in gut bacteria which triggers inflammation in the skin.
- Increases signs of aging such as fine lines, reduced elasticity, uneven skin tone and dark circles.
- The outer layer of skin is responsible for keeping skin hydrated. When you’re stressed the ability of this layer of the skin to maintain hydration is impaired making skin dry and itchy.
- Stress causes disruption to skin proteins which reduces elasticity and causes wrinkles. When we’re stressed, we also tend to frown or furrow our brows which causes wrinkles in those areas.
Reduce Stress For A Radiant Glow
- Take good care of your skin even when you’re stressed. Stick with your skin care routine even when you don’t feel like it.
- Get your exercise. When you exercise, the hormones you release counteract the stress hormones and improve energy, mood, outlook and skin.
- Take up a hobby. Participating in activities that you enjoy help boost mood and lower stress levels.
- Relax. Reducing stress is a key component to good skin health. Read a book, take a bath, get a massage, meditate, practice yoga or do a 20-minute BrainTap stress reduction session. Your skin and brain will thank you
Our skin is a marvelous thing and proper care of our health and wellbeing will start to shine through. So make your health a priority; your body will thank you.