SKIN Aging during Quarantine?
I don’t know about you but I feel like I’ve aged a few years years in the last 12 months.
These days, it’s a statement I hear often from friends and patients. Can we chalk it up to quarantine exhaustion, or as my hairdresser says “High Functioning Anxiety” or has lockdown actually done something to speed up the aging process of our skin?
It’s very similar to what happens when there is a death in the family or a divorce and patients would come in and say, ‘I feel like I aged five years overnight.’ Now we’re seeing that happening due the events of this past year.”
Here is where you can skip the Geek and the Good Stuff and scroll down to Get to the Fix😀
STRESS AND SKIN
What’s at play may be primarily the effect of chronic stress, which can have a more harmful impact on the skin than shorter periods of acute stress. Stress drives neurologic and endocrine responses to real and perceived threats. Prolonged activation of these responses results in a cascade of challenges and weakens the immune system. It also increases free radicals and subsequent DNA damage, all of which contribute to skin-quality.
The brain responds to perceived danger, by triggering the fight-or-flight response, leading to adrenaline release and tipping off a surge of other hormones like cortisol, which is inflammatory to the body which if prolonged can eventually impact the skin.
Long periods of elevated cortisol exposure may be causing many of us to feel that our faces have, quite literally, fallen. Ugh!!!
Stress can actually inhibit your body’s production of hyaluronic acid, collagen and lipids.
- Hyaluronic acid binds a thousand times its weight in water, so it really helps to plump up the skin.
- Collagen is the triple-helix protein that keeps the skin tight and firm, helping to prevent wrinkles and fine lines.
- Finally, lipids are the healthy fats that bolster the skin’s ability to function as a barrier.
So, when that barrier function is impaired our skin becomes leaky. Sounds a lot like how our intestinal barrier responds to stress dosen’t it? Click here for more on that topic.
OTHER CAUSES OF AGING IN QUARANTINE
- Too much free time? Overdoing it at home with their skin-care regimens and the zoom no makeup look? More is not always better it can lead to irritation and redness.
- Frequent mask wearing and infrequent mask washing have led to a lot of congested pores along the jawline—now known by the unfortunate term maskne—along with an increase in dermatitis around the mouth and nose.
- A little extra alcohol and caffeine consumption can result in dehydration. As we mention before dehydration activates Cortisol and therefore skin producing less hyaluronic acid and collagen making it look saggy and dry.
- The Watched Pot. I think I might have a touch of this…LOL ..While the pandemic has brought on some very real skin issues, there is also an element that has an impact, yep the Watched Pot! Never in modern history have we all spent so much time staring at our faces up close. Ugh!!! “It’s impossible to underestimate how much looking at ourselves at less than flattering angles and lighting has impacted our sense of our appearance and our stress levels.
HOW TO GET YOUR GLOW ON
Start with the basic building blocks:
A healthy diet—antioxidant rich, low glycemic fruit and colorful veggie heavy. Add in clean proteins, healthy fats and fiber. Need more? Then add in a scoop of Clean Collagen Powder to your favorite morning beverage.
Regular movement:Your skin needs fresh blood an oxygen. It is our largest organ of Detoxification. Personally my skin was at its best after a Hot Sweaty Yoga Class. The heat plus the movement was a great combination.
Get enough sleep and drink plenty of water.
To keep emotional health strong, add in a meditative practice such as deep breathing. Mental-health support is key for maintaining skin health.
It’s a good idea to scale back on the product load and replace your routine with a simple regime that is not loaded with suspicious sounding chemicals.
Last but not least, Here are my top skin picks from the top rated whole food and plant product companies Standard Process and Mediherb
- Collagen C. This formula is rich in Collagen and a key skin antioxidant Vitamin C.
- Regenerplex: For General Skin Health. Support for fine lines and skin elasticity.
- Dermaco: Support for Chronic Skin Conditions like eczema, acne and psoriasis
- Gotu Kola Complex: Promotes Inside and Outside Tissue repair and healing
- AF Betafood: For Dry Skin
I did a popular post a few weeks ago that talked more about skin conditions (Answers to Skin Questions) and how to best support various issues. Here is the link if you want to dig a little deeper.
Before I go: If you are not supporting your Adrenal Glands … you need to. It is necessary in these times as Chronic Stress overtime has far reaching catabolic effects.
Ashwaganda Forte and Drenamin are my two favorites.
Have a great week, Take care of yourselves and those you love … it is Heart Month all year!