Boost collagen and firm up your skin naturally.
Collagen is the buzzword in the anti-ageing industry. From skincare to food supplements, retailers are claiming the benefits of their collagen-infused products on ageing. These products have claims to prevent or soothe wrinkles among other anti-ageing benefits. To lessen the impact of ageing, women and men slather on collagen-boosting skincare and take health supplements that range from liquid to powder forms. Everyone wants to look younger and delay the negative effects of ageing.
Collagen is a protein that is naturally produced by the human body. It is like a building block for the internal cells and tissues. Collagen gives the skin strength and elasticity. As we age, the natural ability to produce collagen internally diminishes too. This is why when we are younger, our skin looks supple whereas as we age, our skin becomes less firm and taut. A lack of collagen will also affect the rest of the body, not just the skin. For example, parts of our body, particularly our knee joints, may start to stiffen and creak and we find that we are less agile than before, possibly even developing arthritis in our later years.
There are many convenient fixes in the market. Collagen drinks and supplements in various forms, such as powder, pill, and liquid are available. These drinks are very easy to prepare. Some need no extra effort: you just open the lid and drink. If they are not consumed on their own, they can be poured into other drinks such as coffee and juice. Though these are selling like hotcakes despite their hefty price tag, some proponents argue that the collagen compounds in these drinks and supplements may not be that effective after all. This is because the body treats them as protein; thereby using them as energy to power up the body’s daily functions instead of tapping on their intended anti-ageing function.
Also, collagen-infused skincare, according to other proponents, is simply too large in compound to be effectively absorbed into the dermis. Without effective absorption, these skincare products are practically useless. They may help to moisturise the skin somehow but may not counter sagging effectively. Despite this, many are still flocking to the skincare counters and grabbing their monthly skincare supplies. After all, you only live once. And it’s better to believe these claims than not?
Although there have been no conclusive studies that collagen-infused products are really making an impact on our skin, the good news is that there are still ways to reverse the collagen damage to our skin. Let’s look at how.
The effects of sun damage onto our skin are unfortunately irreversible. Protecting the skin is therefore essential. Protection will help to reverse the effects of ageing such as reducing pigmentation, wrinkles, and sagging. Delay the effects of ageing by making sure you’re covered up with sunscreen all the time especially when engaged in activities outdoors or when at the beach. Ensure always that you put on your wide-brimmed hat and shades. Wear UV clothing too when you’re out and about.
First, keep your skin clear to enable skin renewal to take place. How to encourage the boosting of collagen when there are so many dead skin cells on the surface? Hence, make it a habit to scrub your skin regularly. If you have oily and acne-prone skin, use gentle scrubs or scrubs that contain AHA (alpha hydroxyl acids). Consider using retinol-based products too. Retinol is a derivative of vitamin A, an essential ingredient to collagen production. Those with mature skin could use retinol-based moisturisers as part of their skincare regimen.
You are what you eat
Have you noticed how some foods can cause you to feel more sluggish while others energise you straightaway? Eating the right foods can make us feel good because our body feels nourished naturally. Foods are important in maintaining a person’s health and strengthening the body’s immune system.
Certain fruits are powerful antioxidants. Watermelon and tomatoes contain lycopene, an antioxidant said to help in preventing collagen damage. Studies have shown that consuming lycopene may help to reduce the risks of cancer and heart disease among other conditions.
Of course, vitamin C is another popular antioxidant that helps in skin renewal. Foods with vitamin C are many such as oranges, strawberries, kiwis etc. The vitamin is also helpful to help the body fight free radicals that reduce the adverse effects of many heart-related diseases.
Monounsaturated fats are way better than saturated fats because they help to reduce bad cholesterol from the body. They are also good sources of vitamin E, an important vitamin for anti-ageing too. Olive oil and nuts are excellent sources of monounsaturated fat.
Omega-3 fatty acids are great in reducing inflammation in the body and helping the mind stay alert. Research has shown the benefits against Alzheimer’s disease and dementia, conditions that arise out of ageing. Eating deep water fish such as salmon and mackerel can help to keep these conditions at bay.
Chocolates are rich in flavanols, which are important in keeping the blood vessels healthy. This would, in turn, lower the risk of other conditions such as dementia. Ever felt a rush whenever you take a bite of a bar of chocolate? Dark chocolate especially can help to reduce bad cholesterol and keep your heart healthy. But moderation needs to be practised here. Don’t go overboard and eat more than necessary else it will show up in the waistline.
Red wine is another drink that contains antioxidants such as resveratrol that can help to fight free radicals, preventing age-related problems. Resveratrol is reported to help firm the skin and lock the skin’s moisture. In addition, it has anti-inflammatory properties to soothe and calm the skin. A glass a day for females and two glasses for men are universally prescribed although it also depends on the person’s physical health condition. Drinking in moderation is again advised here. You may also consider getting resveratrol supplements if you are a teetotaller.