Is Your Skin Malnourished?

When I was about 8 years old, I watched the episode of the Simpsons when Lisa Simpson visited a petting zoo and fell in love with a sweet baby lamb.  That night at dinner her mom served lamb chops.  She protested and refused to eat.  I had heard about this "vegetarian" diet before when I learned about herbivores in The Land Before Time movie and decided that being a meat-eater was no longer who I wanted to be.  I declared my decision to my Barbie dolls and proceeded to live a meat-free life.


Being a vegetarian was great!  That was until I got to school the very next day and saw that pepperoni pizza was on the lunch menu.  You remember, the rectangular slices with the little pepperoni cubes.  Ha ha!  Those were primo cafeteria eats back then!  "Well, I'll just have to start being a vegetarian tomorrow then!" Then the next day, corn dogs were on the lunch menu.  Siiiiggghhh! "Okay, then.  I can just start tomorrow."  I thought.  "But FOR REAL this time."  Nope.  Friday night sleepovers at Auntie's house meant pancakes, eggs, and maple sausage for breakfast in the morning.  Oh, no!  There's no way I'm going to miss out on that!  I decided.  


Needless to say, being a vegetarian didn't last long at all.  In fact, it was over before it had even begun.  On the other hand, I have always loved fruits and vegetables... Well some vegetables.  As I've grown older, I have become a bit more adventurous in my food selections.  With the exception of mushrooms.  Those are off limits!  I won't even look at them!  However, I have my favorites, like red seedless grapes, spinach, strawberries, and cucumbers.  I can't imagine life without them, just as much as I can't imagine life without some good ol' pork bacon and sirloin steak.


If the thought of spending a lifetime without juicy, sweet oranges, crisp, tangy apples, and yummy sweet potatoes, or any other fruit or vegetable makes you feel weak, then we can agree that life without fresh food is not living at all.  Sure, we could survive, for a while at least.  But life is not about surviving!  It's about thriving!  Just because you look FINE, feel FINE, and are doing just FINE does not mean that you are well.  Don't you want to feel amazing, look gorgeous, and light up the room with your radiance, confidence, and positive energy?  Keep reading, and I'll show you how.


It is becoming common knowledge that we should "eat the rainbow," meaning eat a variety of foods with colors ranging from purple to green, red to yellow, and more.  But what good does a healthy diet do for the skin, if only a minimal amount of nutrients actually reaches the skin?  Of course, there are more advantages of eating a healthy diet than just having a clear, glowing complexion, but this is definitely a perk.  The point is that we need a well-balanced diet to be healthy and strong.  So as the saying goes, "you are what you eat."  Don't be cheap, fast, or easy!  


The same goes for your skin care.  Cheap skin care alternatives, more often than not are chemical-laden knock-offs that can potentially do more cellular damage than good.  Think of it as cranberry juice vs. cranberry juice cocktail.  One is full of antioxidants, the other is full of refined sugar.  One can help prevent urinary tract infections and certain types of cancers.  The other one can contribute to obesity and type 2 diabetes.  One can lower blood pressure, the other, well... doesn't.  Clearly, the benefits of the real deal far outweigh the cheap alternative.  Great health is an investment.  It takes conscious effort, and it takes the dedication of time.  It certainly does't have to take all day, but splashing your face and running out the door and surviving off of grab-and-go types of snacks will not fare well for your health.  


Since the demands of the internal organ systems take the vast majority of the nutrients before any can reach the skin, it is that much more important to take care of the skin on the outside as well.   Although it is worth noting that a healthy diet does certainly help the condition of the skin as opposed to a poor diet.  Topical antioxidants, sun block, and retinoids are skin care rock stars.  The results they provide are remarkable and irrefutable, as are the effects of not using them at all.


According to Western and Eastern Medicine, the internal health of the body can be seen on the face.  There are many different conditions that will manifest changes on the skin, like thyroid disorder, high cholesterol,  food allergies, anemia, diabetes, and more.  The consumption of milk products and excess sugar have been suspected to contribute to acne, but the research has not yet proven this theory.  You should be sure visit your doctor annually for your check-up and to address any health concerns.  However, for superficial, non life-threatening skin concerns skin care products and cosmetic procedures can help.


Dehydration, which is a chronic problem for most Americans, can be detected in the skin as well.  This is especially evident in chapped lips and when skin does not snapped back quickly when pinched.  Adequate hydration is of great importance when it comes to overall health, with our bodies being composed of 70% water.  For the skin, topical moisturizer is super important, since the water in the skin will likely evaporate when exposed to dry air.  Next on the scale of importance (in my opinion) would be antioxidant support.  Antioxidants have a crucial role in fighting against those naughty little free radicals that place undue stress on the body, accelerate the aging process, and may even lead to cancer.  Internal consumption and external application of vitamins like vitamins A, C, and E and other antioxidants like green tea are the perfect combo! 


If your diet is no bueno, then it should come as no surprise when I recommend you clean it up. In addition to that, using nourishing skin products to ensure the longevity of your good looks is well worth the time, effort, and investment, if it means your skin won't shrivel like some stale toast.  Start with a simple antioxidant serum in the daytime and some growth factor at night.  You will see a difference in your skin within 90 days, but really the effects are cumulative and are for long term support.


No one wakes up in the morning and says "I can't wait to be completely mediocre today,"  "I enjoy living a dull, and oh so boring life," or "I love feeling weak and unattractive!"  That's because it is in our nature to want to be healthy, vivacious, and vibrantly attractive.  These things lead to a long and happy life, and ultimately the survival of the human race.  It is important to know that the absence of disease is not what we should consider healthy.  Health is your overall well-being, with the emphasis on "well".  This means each day you wake up, you should feel great!  You should look your best and do your very best!  If that has not been your reality, then you can start today!