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The Mind-body Wellness Connection

By: Simone Baroke
Posted: January 29, 2010, from the February 2010 issue of Skin Inc. magazine.
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Although iodine isn’t often used in skin care, it can be offered to spa clients through consumable products. Many spas these days offer nutritional components, from things as simple as functional water and nutritional supplements to those as extensive as a full spa cuisine menu, and this helps build the base of health for skin and the body overall, promoting general wellness from within.

Another, much more high-profile, brain-boosting nutrient that can be directly linked to skin care is DHA omega-3. Omega-3 helps reduce acne and inflammation, and encourages more supple skin, leaving it more hydrated, softer and smoother. It helps create strong, healthy cells, which, in turn, can help rejuvenate and renew skin, for a more radiant look.

Omega-3 also is about to broaden its target group considerably. There is now an even rapidly growing evidence base that omega-3 DHA might delay or even prevent the onset of Alzheimer’s disease, and possibly other types of dementia. Of course, omega-3 is also known to be highly beneficial for heart health. This brain-heart benefit combination considerably heightens omega-3’s appeal to a mature target group, as well as strengthening its position as an ultimate body-mind wellness nutrient.

Antioxidants also are up and coming in the quest to preserve mental agility and bodily health into the later years. Recent studies carried out by Purdue University and Mount Sinai School of Medicine have shown that a type of antioxidant called polyphenols, which are found in grape skins and seeds, actually reach the brain, where they are thought to prevent the formation of plaques that cause Alzheimer’s disease. And, of course, a myriad of skin care products contain antioxidants, which benefit the skin by encouraging anti-aging and fighting back against destructive free radicals.

Herbal mind boosters

Herbal products are also benefiting a great deal from rising mind-body wellness awareness. For instance, global value sales of ginkgo biloba more than doubled from the 2003–2008 review period, to more than $1 billion in 2008. Some studies have shown this herb increases blood circulation, including blood flow to and around the brain, which optimizes memory function, and also helps deliver vital nutrients to skin.