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By: Lisa M. Crary
Posted: July 30, 2013, from the August 2013 issue of Skin Inc. magazine.
page 3 of 8
Although skin care professionals cannot prescribe diets and supplementation, educating and informing clients during the skin analysis process can help them make better lifestyle choices when they exit your doors. Consultation forms should include questions concerning diet and lifestyle. See Diet, Supplementation and Lifestyle Client Questions for a sample of the types questions to ask.
A thoughtfully planned, nutrient-rich diet hinders the physiological aging mechanisms in tissues, not only by preventing malnutrition, but also by adding high quantities of beneficial nutrients, particularly antioxidants found in foods, such as grapes and blueberries. The combination of dietary substances also affects skin health. For example, a high-glycemic with a low-fat or fat-free diet can accelerate the aging process and have a negative impact on the skin.1, 2
It is also important to advise clients about how nutrients are affected by the cooking process. When food is heated, oxidation of nutrients increases drastically, often draining foods of essential nutrients.3, 4
Sugar. A diet high in sugar can cause the glycation of collagen. Sugar attaches to the proteins collagen and elastin, and causes a cross-linking process promoting elastosis and wrinkles.5 Instead, recommend a diet high in vegetables, low glycemic-index fruits and lean proteins. Supplement this with antioxidants, such as alpha lipoic acid, vitamins C and E, and glutathione.
Fats. Diets high in saturated fats can block the body’s ability to utilize essential fatty acids (EFAs). EFAs—most notably omega-3 and -6—are the best fats for the skin, and their absence has a significantly harmful impact. EFAs can only be obtained from diet and supplementation. Sources of omega-3 and -6 include oily fish, such as salmon and mackerel; flax, borage and evening primrose oils; green, leafy vegetables; and some plant seed oils, such as grape seed oil.
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