Factors That Affect Your Skin
Though it’s there before your eyes when you look down, into the mirror and at photos of yourself, your skin is something you likely ignore or take for granted until there is something wrong with it.
From spots and tans to make-up and conditions like acne and eczema, your skin has many more important functions than what meets the eye, and yet it’s only when you have a cut, a zit or dry skin that you take action to take care of it.
The most common go-to remedies are lotions and medicines designed to tackle the problem at hand, but maybe it’s time to take a look at management and preventative measures, rather than a fix when something goes wrong? The fact is that some of the main factors that affect your skin come from lifestyle choices you have made.
For starters, smoking and booze do your skin no favours. Alcohol ages your skin more rapidly and can enhance signs of dehydration, showing unwanted lines and swelling. While the answer isn’t necessarily to cut booze altogether for healthier skin, you can drink in moderation, ensure that you hydrate, avoid binging and cocktails filled with added sugars. The good news is there are ‘healthier’ types of booze, like clear spirits and red wine, which aren’t a cure but do contain a high amount of antioxidants.
Smoking is bad across all board, but if you smoke socially to look cool, think again – those cigarettes deprive your skin of oxygen and nutrients, leaving it looking, well, dead. Next time you read about someone opting for collagen treatment to cure wrinkles and sagging, just remember that it is cigarettes that lead to the loss of that collagen and elastin, which keep the spring in your skin.
Almost as bad as smoking is too much stress, which can worsen skin conditions such as acne and psoriasis. This is because your body releases cortisol, which is a hormone that increases the oil production in your skin.
But when it comes to nutrition, which are the vitamins that do the most good for your skin?
Best Vitamins For Healthy Skin
Vitamin D is synonymous with healthy skin. Also known as the sunshine vitamin, a vitamin D deficiency has not only been linked to low moods and a lack of energy, but also skin conditions such as acne and eczema. Supplements can help to get you your recommended 5,000 international units on days when skin flare-ups are a burden, with lower vitamin D levels linked to more severe skin conditions – especially during pregnancy.
Vitamin C is essential for your general health. For your skin, it helps with the production of collagen, which certain lifestyle factors can actively deplete. In other words, it helps to keep your skin firm, and as an antioxidant prevents damage to your skin by free radicals.
Vitamin E is good for your immune system and also integral in maintaining healthy skin and eyes. As an antioxidant, it serves your skin in the battle against free radicals. A healthy regular dose of vitamin E also helps to store vitamins A too, which can help to treat wrinkles.
Vitamin B in its various forms plays an essential role in the function of your brain, nervous system and blood cells along with the maintenance of healthy skin. Research has found that vitamin B3 can ‘brighten’ your skin and reduce the signs of ageing, while vitamin B5 is a highly efficient nutrient for preventing skin water loss, therefore helping to keep it hydrated.
Tips For Healthier Skin
Keep hydrated. You will reap health benefits in many ways – especially during exercise – by seeing that your body gets all the water that it needs. When it comes to the skin that you’re in, you can do yourself a favour and keep it from sagging, getting dry, red and flaky by keeping hydrated.
Get your antioxidants. Vitamins are not some little-known secret – our aforementioned list is essential in keeping your skin in good health, especially the ones with antioxidant properties. Along with daily supplements, keep an eyes our for superfoods that contain all the antioxidants you can get.
Limit contact with the sun. The sun is good for you in many ways, especially as a source of vitamin D, but it is also a very good way to damage your skin. Absorb it in moderation, wear sun cream and moisturise afterwards.
Pollution is bad. Really? you say. Not to point out the obvious, but you maybe didn’t also realise that one of the ways pollution can affect you is by damaging your skin. Sometimes the level of pollution indoors can be worse than it is outside, so keeping plants in your house can cure the air as a kind of filter.
Get your rest. Sleep helps by allowing your skin to repair. Getting into a routine also helps with stress, which we have established is a real problem for healthy skin, so do your best to get into a sleeping a pattern and bring your stress levels down before you hit the hay.
Work out. Exercise enhances your mood and bodily functions due to the flow of blood and oxygen. This affects your skin, sending the essential nutrients from your diet to your skin. It also helps to keep your stress levels in check, not to mention that sweating is a great way to flush out unwanted grime.