As the old saying goes, “you are what you eat.” However, in terms of natural skin care diet is a great place to start, but by no means does good skin care stop there. When it comes to natural skin care it is not only about what you eat but also how you care for yourself. Healthy, glowing skin is a visible indication of good physical health and a balanced diet. Conversely, problem skin is often an outward indication of an inner imbalance or poor nutritional habits. If you are looking to improve your skin’s tone and appearance try the following tips to help you look and feel your best.
Adopt a can-do attitude
Your attitude shapes your experience. If you move through the world constantly fraught with worry and anxiety your health and appearance will be negatively impacted with time. Make a concerted effort to avoid frowning, and smile often. Studies show that simply smiling can help turn a sour mood around.
Care for your skin from the inside out
Small changes such as ingesting the recommended daily allowance of fiber and water can help to keep your skin fresh and supple. You can be assured of getting the proper amount of fiber in your diet by including at least 5 servings of fruits and vegetables in your daily diet. One serving is comprised of a medium apple, a half-cup of spinach or a cup of tomato juice. You can also get your servings in by including lettuce and tomato on sandwiches, substituting or adding carrot sticks to your lunch, or switching to brown instead of white rice. Flaxseed, nuts and beans are all excellent sources of fiber and can be easily incorporated into any diet. It is also a good idea to avoid nicotine, excessive sugar, alcohol, fried and processed foods as these contribute to problem skin. Keep a bottle or glass of water on hand at all times and aim to drink at least half your weight in ounces each day. For example, if you weigh 120lbs, try to take in at least 60 ounces of water each day. There are a number of foods, such as lettuce and certain fruits, with high water content that you can use to help boost your water intake. Water baths your cells and helps to eliminate toxins; it also keeps you hydrated from the inside. The result; beautiful, healthy skin.
Exfoliate and move
Your skin is a living organ; in fact, it is the largest elimination organ of the body. You can help facilitate this process with exfoliation and exercise. With exfoliation, dry, rough and dead skin cells are eliminated from the top layer of your skin revealing the glowing skin underneath. Exfoliation becomes more important with aging as the process of generating new skin cells slows, thus causing a dull complexion. There are a number of commercially available products that exfoliate. These include various scrubs with microbeads, sugar, salt and crushed walnut shells. You might also try using cloths specially designed for this purpose, or making your own preparation. Be careful to test any products for sensitivity before applying to the skin. Also, be sure to avoid using these products in sensitive areas such as around the eyes.
Exercise is also an important component of natural skin care. In addition to cardiovascular and respiratory benefits, both important for skin health, exercise helps the body release toxins through the skin with perspiration. Aim to get at least thirty minutes of exercise at least three times each week. Whatever activity you choose should take you within 50-70% of your target heart rate for best results.
Moisturize and protect against the elements
Just as it is important to care for skin from the inside out it is also important to employ some skin care tips from the outside in. Most importantly, keep your face clean and dry. Wash your face with a mild, non-irritating cleanser at least twice daily and after exercise. Avoid using water that is too hot as it can dry your skin, robbing it of its healthy glow. Apply a toner with light, upward strokes. Finally, apply a moisturizer that includes sunscreen in summer and winter when the rays of the sun can also be damaging. For best results apply moisturizer to still damp skin to create the most effective moisture barrier. In addition to sunscreen, you may want to consider a hat if you have particularly sensitive or fair skin.
The average adult needs 7-9 hours sleep each evening; however, most get significantly less. You can improve your skin’s health and appearance simply by getting a good night’s sleep. If worries keep you awake try creating a to-do list or a journal to ease your mind. You should also avoid upsetting activities, such as drinking alcohol, heavy exercise or watching the news, within several hours of bedtime as these can disturb restful sleep.
We all want to look and feel our best and good skin care is a significant contributing factor. Maintain your skin with a sensible diet, exercise, rest and a can-do attitude.