How to take good care of your skin?
The structure of the skin
The skin is the largest organ of the human body. Its area is approx. 2 m2, weight 3 kg, and thickness 3 mm. Its anatomical structure is divided into three layers: epidermis, dermis and subcutaneous tissue. In the epidermis there are, among others melanocytes, which produce melanin responsible for skin pigmentation. The epidermis can be used to judge the level of skin hydration and appearance. Various active substances penetrate it and it forms an outer layer that protects against microorganisms. The dermis consists of connective tissue that contains collagen and elastin fibers. Collagen contained in the connective tissue affects the firmness, elasticity, hydration and constant renewal of the skin. On the other hand, the subcutaneous tissue consists mainly of adipocytes grouped in the so-called lobules of fat. It also contains blood vessels, lymph vessels and nerve endings. It is primarily an energy store of the body, protects against heat loss and mechanical injuries. The skin is replaced regularly. In young people it is about 30 days, while in older people it is about 45 days. This process allows the damaged skin to be replaced with a new one, the epidermis regenerates.
The effect of diet on the skin
Nutrition has a huge impact on the functioning of our body and the condition and appearance of the skin. This is the basis. If we want to look nice, we have to eat right. If we neglect our nutrition, no supplements, cosmetics or aesthetic treatments will help us. What should you pay special attention to?
- Water – Proper hydration is essential. Water moisturizes us from the inside out and helps distribute nutrients, vitamins and minerals throughout the body.
Lots of vegetables of different colors. Preferably fresh and raw. They can also be in the form of juices. Green vegetables are rich in chlorophyll, which cleans the blood of toxins that are one of the causes of skin lesions.
Fruits of all kinds, but preferably with a low glycemic index or in combination with the right additives, e.g. a salad of sliced apples, almond flakes and the whole sprinkled with cinnamon to reduce the GI of the dish.
Complex carbohydrates, preferably also with a low glycemic index and load. It is good to introduce amarnatus (contains cleansing squalene) and quinoa, which contain wholesome protein and a lot of nutrients.
Healthy and good-quality fats such as
– evening primrose oil – contains GLA, which has a soothing and anti-inflammatory effect. GLA also contains borage and black currant oil.
– sesame oil – detoxifies, while when used externally, it works well in the case of dry and cracked skin and fungal skin diseases
– black cumin oil –has anti-inflammatory properties, helps in the fight against acne, psoriasis, impetigo, atopic dermatitis, blackheads, skin mycosis, rashes, lesions caused by bacterial infection, herpes. It firms, strengthens and tones the skin.
– pumpkin seed oil – participates in the processes of skin pigmentation and wound healing. It prevents infections. In addition, it has anti-inflammatory properties and has a positive effect on reducing acne lesions. Regular body massage with oil helps reduce cellulite and the appearance of stretch marks. Makes the skin smoother and better taut.
– rocket seed oil – can prevent skin inflammation and support the natural treatment of eczema, psoriasis and acne. Supports the treatment of skin ulcers, has anti-seborrhoeic and anti-aging properties, improves skin elasticity and appearance.
What should be excluded from the menu?
First of all, you should exclude all kinds of processed, ready-made food, fast food, ketchup, mustard, ready-made sauces, etc., which contain a lot of different additives, preservatives, dyes. It is also worth limiting processed meat, such as sausages, cold cuts, pates, sausages. There should also be no place in the diet for trans fats, as well as sugar and products containing it. Many people can be harmed by dairy products and reducing it improves the condition of the skin.
Supplementation for the skin
In addition to the basic principles of healthy eating, it is worth taking care of the correct supply of vitamins and minerals. In the case of deficiencies, the first symptoms are visible on the skin and hair. The skin needs many nutrients to function properly. For this reason, it is worth taking care of in particular:
Vitamin A and beta-carotene– has a healing effect in skin diseases, especially in those with inflammation. Vitamin A deficiency manifests itself, inter alia, in dry, flaky skin and accelerated aging. We can find it, for example, in liver, fatty fish and butter. It is also worth increasing the amount of yellow and green vegetables in the diet, such as carrots, spinach, chard, kale, etc., which should be eaten with some source of fat because then they are better absorbed.
Vitamin D3– has a huge impact on all functions of the body and with each disease entity should take care of its proper level. We find it in fatty fish, eggs and dairy products. Vitamins A and D are often considered nutrients that exhibit the properties of skin hormones.
Vitamin E– called the vitamin of youth, a strong antioxidant, it prevents drying of the skin, soothes inflammation, regenerates, smoothes and moisturizes. It helps to get rid of scars. A symptom of vitamin E deficiency is i.a. premature aging and keratosis of the skin and longer wound healing. Many creams, especially anti-wrinkle creams, contain it in their composition. Its sources are eggs, fatty fish, avocados, nuts, seeds and vegetable oils. If we want to supplement it, the best option are capsules or drops containing both groups of vitamin E compounds, i.e. tocopherols and tocotrienols.
Vitamin C– has the ability to lighten discoloration and even out the skin tone. It helps in eliminating pimples. It helps in the fight against seborrhea and acne. It soothes the skin and soothes irritations. In addition, vitamin C supports the production of collagen responsible for skin firmness and elasticity. We find it mainly in vegetables and fruits: broccoli, peppers, tomatoes, raspberries, black currants, citrus. It can be supplemented in the form of sea buckthorn juice or acerola or acai powder.
Zinc– needed for the development and proper functioning of the skin. Supports the production of collagen, which delays the aging process of the skin. It shortens the time of wound healing. It has a healing effect on varicose veins, ulcers and skin diseases. Zinc deficiency causes, inter alia, poor wound healing, skin lesions and dermatitis. Sources of zinc are seafood, fish, liver, meat, brewer’s yeast, eggs, pulses, nuts and dairy products.
Silicon– supports the treatment of skin inflammations and accelerates the regeneration of the epidermis, is involved in the synthesis of collagen, elastin and hyaluronic acid, i.e. the basic ingredients that build the skin. Its deficiency is manifested by the rapid aging of the skin and skin problems. We find it in cereals, bran, beetroot, cabbage, radishes, cucumbers, dates, and bananas.
Magnesium– soothes the nervous system, and skin problems often worsen under stress. Its sources are groats, quinoa, sorrel, nuts, seeds, dark chocolate, bananas and avocados.
– improves skin elasticity and firmness, strengthens its protective barrier, stimulates collagen production, helps reduce wrinkles. Among the natural sources of folic acid, there are pods, spinach, lettuce, cabbage, Brussels sprouts, broccoli, cauliflower, eggs and liver.
Omega-3 fatty acids
– have anti-inflammatory properties, can inhibit the production of pro-inflammatory cytokines and favorably support the treatment of acne vulgaris. We find them in fatty fish, nuts, and linseed oil.
Probiotics– it has long been said that “all diseases begin in the gut”, so even in the case of skin problems, you need to take care of the proper functioning of the gut microflora. It is good for the diet to be rich in natural probiotics, such as various types of pickled vegetables, but it turns out more and more often that supplementation with specific probiotics is necessary.
Coenzyme Q10– naturally produced by the body, but with age its production significantly decreases, which is manifested by the aging of the body. The highest concentration occurs between 19-21 years of age, and then its production in cells begins to decline. Coenzyme Q10 stimulates the production and regeneration of cells, slows down the aging process, accelerates wound healing, improves skin firmness and elasticity, soothes inflammation, is a strong antioxidant. It affects the production of tocopherol, i.e. vitamin E. It is a component of many creams, mainly anti-wrinkle creams. However, it is very important to complete it from the inside as well. The sources of coenzyme Q10 are fatty fish, meats, grain products, oils and some vegetables. When supplementing with coenzyme Q10, it is worth paying attention to ubiquinol, which is an active form of coenzyme Q10. It is much better absorbed and has strong antioxidant properties.
If we are unable to provide individual vitamins or minerals with the diet, then it is worth adding supplementation. However, it should be remembered that supplementation for everyone should be selected individually depending on the type of skin problems. We need to adjust the supplements to our needs, not the need for supplements. First, we diagnose our skin problems, and then we choose supplements depending on it. If we have large shortages, first of all, they must be supplemented.
Herbs for the skin
It is also worth including various herbs that cleanse the body of toxins, rebuild the epidermis and help fight skin imperfections. Infusions, teas, oils, tonics and ointments will work here. It is worth paying attention to:
Burdock root– has antibacterial, cleansing properties, helps to heal psoriasis and seborrhea.
Aloe – has anti-inflammatory, bactericidal and fungicidal properties. It supports the healing of wounds, scratches and inflammations, and also nourishes and moisturizes the skin. It helps to reduce the visibility of scars and stretch marks.
Oregano oil– has antifungal and antiviral properties. It can be rubbed into the skin and taken orally.
Lilac flowers– have anti-inflammatory properties, accelerate wound healing, help detoxify and cleanse the body. They soothe irritations and various inflammations of the skin. They have antibacterial properties, thanks to which they disinfect the skin well.
Green tea– has a good effect on the skin, contains antioxidants that have antibacterial properties, and catechins inhibit the production of sebum. It also contains tannic acid to help fight skin inflammation and swelling.
Tea tree oil– has antibacterial and anti-inflammatory properties. It regulates the work of the sebaceous glands, accelerates the regeneration of the epidermis and the healing process of wounds.
Appropriate, natural care, protection and hygiene are also important in the case of skin problems. The basic rule is to use as little cosmetics as possible, with the most natural, delicate and shortest possible ingredients. Here the principle is that less is better. For this reason, it is worth focusing on natural, good-quality cosmetics, both for application on the face, on the whole body and for bathing.
Our lifestyle also has no effect on our appearance. One of the very important elements is sleep. All regenerative processes in the body take place during sleep. If we get enough sleep, our skin looks more radiant and healthy. No cosmetics can replace a good night’s sleep. The same is true for stress. Excessive and chronic stress also affects our skin. Cigarettes have a negative effect on the skin. Smoking cigarettes makes the skin dull, dull and ages faster. If someone smokes cigarettes, he should definitely stop it! Also, do not overdo sunbathing. Maybe brown and tanned skin looks nice, but too much suntan is harmful, it dries out the skin and accelerates aging.
Physical activity is very important when caring for the skin and its appearance. It makes our body firmer, more elastic and tense, and the skin is more oxygenated. Physical activity also helps reduce cellulite. Regular exercise helps to remove toxins and free radicals from the body that contribute to aging. And here it is very important to always take a shower after training in the gym, fitness classes or other types of physical activity. We must not forget about it or postpone it. The training should also not be done with makeup.
Everything affects our skin. Starting with nutrition, health, lifestyle, used cosmetics, pollution and the environment in which we live. The skin is a reflection of the way of life and nutrition. If we want it to look beautiful and young, we must remember about all these aspects and act in many directions.