There is no one easy way to really beautiful skin. It requires a multitude of efforts like nutrition and supplements, water, exercise, exfoliation, cleansing and protecting, stress management, sufficient sleep, topical treatments to help turn over collagen, and anti-oxidants to fight the damages of free radicals.
At fifty four years old I know exactly how to keep my skin looking and feeling good but I'm always interested in new information. I've read books and articles about skin care including several by Dr. Nicholas Perricone and I've abbreviated and adapted some of those philosophies into my lifestyle. When I don't follow the rules, my skin doesn't look as good. I've written this so it will be easy for you to read. Here is what I do to get my skin in shape...
Exercise- 6 days a week. 25 minutes aerobics daily and alternating Yoga and weights.
Water-48 oz. filtered water
Favorite breakfast-Greek yogurt thinned with organic milk, topped with 1 oz. toasted walnuts, tsp honey, and golden raisins
Favorite lunch-My 10" salad plate salad with one whole fruit, goat cheese, toasted walnuts, lemon juice and olive oil.
Favorite dinner- 4 oz. salmon, roasted or sauteed veggie and quinoa salad with kalamata olives, lemon juice, cucumber, red onion and olive oil
Snack- iced coffee with 2% milk and apple with almond butter and extra sea salt
Grocery list- tons of organic fruits, vegetables, and salad blends. Wild salmon and other wild caught fish. Ezekiel English muffins. Beans and nuts. High quality grains like Quinoa.
Exfoliation- I'm a scrubber. Nothing makes your skin look so good as exfoliating every other day. Protect it afterward with a good quality moisturizer or sunscreen from a reputable health food store. There are a lot of chemicals in products on the market today.
Sleep- eight to nine hours to mend body and spirit. A twenty minute rest period in the middle of your work day is incredibly refreshing.
Supplements- Daily Extra Energy multi vitamin; Salmon oil Omega 3; Calcium with vitamin D.
Stress management- mostly I just try being philosophical about things (thank you Nana for teaching me this) but also taking time to do things I enjoy. Treating myself like I'm worth the effort.
Cleansing and protecting- I always take off my eye makeup but I don't have the patience to cleanse and moisturize. Unless I'm doing a regime of Retin A I skip it. It's obviously better to include these steps though.
Best Foods- blueberries, salmon, red bell peppers, olive oil, spinach, Greek yogurt. Any foods that are dense with nutrients and anti-oxidants. Don't skimp on the fat. Your skin and mood needs it.
Topical treatments- products with anti-oxidants like vitamin C and Retin A are the most effective skin care products you can buy. Retin A requires a prescription and it's about $60 a tube. It is a drying agent originally created for acne but it was found to improve cellular turnover, imperative for healthier looking skin. You use it on freshly cleansed, completely dry skin. It only takes a pea size dab for your entire face so the tube lasts about six months. You use it every other day and within a week or two usually your skin will start to peel. Once the peeling is done fresh, new skin is exposed. One warning, Retin A makes your skin sensitive to sun light so you should always wear sunscreen, preferably from a reputable health food store as many sunscreens have PABA and other harmful ingredients.
Fats- like olive oil, walnuts, salmon, and avocados are very important for your skin and mood. I don't skimp on fat for calorie control. Fats also have another important role, especially in women. Fat in foods triggers satisfaction and keeps us from overeating. I never eat margarine. It's not even a food.
Fresh is best- shop the produce section. If you're feeding your family from boxes or cans you're getting a lot of chemicals and wasted calories. The more produce the better.
Meat subsitutes- I've been using eggplant and mushrooms in place of meat in pastas. My vegetarian lasagna was really good with them. Toasted walnuts with sauteed onions adds a satisfying meaty flavor. To get my protein I go to eggs, nuts, fish, and dairy.
Working these into your own lifestyle all at once will be a lot. Take baby steps but once you make the commitment, don't go back. You are worth it.
With love and good intention, Shiree'