Unfortunately, we are aging from the time we are born. Please know there isn’t a single factor in the cause of aging. It is natural, and we have to deal…YEAH RIGHT!
I don’t know about you BUT I AM GOING DOWN WITH A FIGHT!!!! It’s all about choices…
Let’s understand some of the science of it and the theories on aging; then we’ll check into the variables, goals and basic solutions.
See above opening line…This is chronological or biological aging. We have absolutely no control over this type of aging. Though there are researchers since the dawn of time seeking out how to stop this natural process- the fountain of youth has yet to be discovered.
Biological aging can be accelerated by external factors and usually are made worse by choices…SUN, DIET, LIFESTYLE. Other factors that make aging happen faster chronic inflammation and pollution.
THEORIES ON AGING
NEUROENDOCRINE THEORY: In youth, our hormonal systems and organs work to regulate body functions. As we age, the body’s hormone loads are lower and they miscommunicate, which accelerates aging.
FREE RADICAL THEORY: Healthy cells are destroyed by extensive damage triggered mainly from exposure to sunlight.
WEAR AND TEAR THEORY: Toxins in our diet and environment wear down our bodies, with the damage augmented by UV exposure, physical and emotional stressors.
INVISIBLE INFLAMMATION THEORY: Sub-clinical inflammation is produced by the release of pro-inflammatory hormones and chemicals when environmental aggressors (UV) attack the cell membrane. This results in the cell’s inability to function normally, so like a little bomb, it self destructs.
Okay, Okay…so NOW WHAT!!!! BREATHE, it will be okay. WHY, you ask? BOTTOM LINE is this…WE ARE AGING, like it or not (I am on TEAM NOT).
What are the characteristics (visibly and not so visibly) of biologically aging skin (Intrinsic Aging)?
- Epidermis (layers you can see) and the Dermis (layers you cannot see) are less flexible making the skin more susceptible to damage and trauma.
- Reductions of oil production (sebum).
- Cell mitosis (cell division) and turnover (replacement of skin cells) is slowed.
- Dermis thins, which leads to a breakdown and reduction of collagen and elastin (these 2 proteins give your skin its bounce and flexibility).
- Fine lines and loss of elasticity displays itself.
- Number of Immune cells decrease in the skin (the skin is the LARGEST ORGAN OF IMMUNE FUNCTION, all of our T-cells and Langerhan cells are born HERE).
- Number of blood vessels and nerves decrease (less blood to the skin=less oxygen, vital minerals and vitamins)
How to combat INTRINSIC aging?
- Encourage the skin’s natural rhythms and metabolism through energizing, correction and protection. Gentle cleansing, regular and skin type appropriate exfoliation, spot treat when needed, looking Vitamin A, C, E, D, and F in your products. These are crucial skin building vitamins, which have all been clinically proven to improve the appearance and health of the skin.
- Strengthen, hydrate, condition, and minimize signs of aging. Wear SPF 15 minimum daily and SPF 30 in the summer and when you will be outdoors for more than 30 minutes (RE-APPLY YOUR SPF every hour). Keep your skin well hydrated both on the surface by adding serums/moisturizers with moisture boosting/attracting ingredients like Hyaluronic Acid and Glycerin; and internally by making sure your H2O intake is correct for your weight. (LBS/2=# of OZS per day)
The goal here is to stave off and slow down the natural process. You may already see the signs of EXTRINSIC aging, so let’s look at these characteristics:
- Mottled, leather like skin texture.
- Wrinkles, fine lines and loss of firmness are visible whether or not you make an expression.
- Thicker skin due accumulation of abnormal elastic tissue which replaces collagen.
- Invisible inflammation (sub-clinical) degrades the extra cellular matrix (gives cells structure and many other functions) after exposure to UV rays.
- Cell mitosis and turnover slows.
- Hyper and Hypo Pigmentation can display (Hyper-pigmentation=too much pigment activated in an area; Hypo-pigmentation=loss of pigment due to damage or trauma).
- UV induced suppressed immune function-leading to higher risk for skin cancers
- Number of blood vessels and nerves.
How do we combat EXTRINSIC aging?
- See above for biological aging PLUS:
- Retexturizing the skin to improve tone, evenness, and reduce appearance of wrinkles and fine lines. Alpha, Beta and Poly Hydroxy Acids can safely and gently retexturize and improve overall color and tone of most skins.(seek professional help if you are unsure of what you should use on your skin). Using the aforementioned vitamins, hydration boosters are all necessary as well as adding newer ingredient technologies like peptides (amino acid chains that stimulate collagen synthesis, and other processes), growth factors (naturally occurring substance capable of stimulating cellular growth, proliferation and cellular differentiation. Usually it is a protein or a steroid hormone. Growth factors are important for regulating a variety of cellular processes).
- Wear SPF 15 minimum daily and SPF 30 in the summer and when you will be outdoors for more than 30 minutes (RE-APPLY YOUR SPF every hour).
Other ingredients to seek out for ALL aging:
Squalene, GaG’s (glycosaminoglucans), Azelaic Acid (for my people of color), Phyallantus Emblica Extract, Licorice Root Extract, DMAE, Co-enzyme Q10.
On a side note I am adding a glossary, but please be patient as I want to make it as complete to date as I can. The information will be informative and easy to understand, my promise.
What are some of the things you are trying in your fight against aging? Discuss in comments…