We’ve all been told that collagen and elastin are essential for maintaining youthful skin, but do you really know why? First, it is important to understand exactly what these two essential components are. Collagen is a vital fibrous protein that is found all throughout the body; it connects and supports tissues including skin, bone, muscles, tendons, cartilage and organs. It is the main protein in connective tissue and is responsible for skin firmness and suppleness.
Elastin is a protein in connective tissue that is responsible for giving structure to the skin and organs. It allows your skin to resume shape after stretching or contorting. Together, collagen and elastin keep connective tissue firm and help it to hold its shape. As your skin loses collagen, it loses elasticity and, on average, we lose about 1% of our collagen every year after the age of 20! The more collagen we lose, the more fine lines and wrinkles appear, which is why it is essential that we work to increase our collagen levels as we age. This can be accomplished by using topical products but also by living a healthy lifestyle.
Build collagen from the inside
For building collagen and elastin, it is recommended to use products that contain antioxidants, which boost anti-aging agents, helping to maintain skin’s collagen and elastin levels and help fight oxidative stress. Additionally, retinol stimulates cell production and helps reveal firmer, younger – looking skin.
SPF isn’t just for avoiding skin cancer
UVA (ageing) and UVB (burning) rays weaken the skin’s support system of collagen and elastin – thereby accelerating the skin’s aging process. Protect your skin and keep your complexion looking its best by using sunscreen with UVA and UVB protection every day to avoid damaging your skin!
Protein rich food can boost internal collagen
Food fuels your body & mind. When you eat poor quality, nutritionally empty foods it is visible on your skin. Try eating foods that are rich in collagen boosting ingredients such as protein rich foods that contain amino acids (eggs, beans, seeds) antioxidants, which inhibit damage to collagen (pomegranates and goji berries are great) and good fats (like walnuts and avacado).
It is also advisable to avoid sun exposure, pollution, cigarettes, alcohol, drugs, pesticides, toxins and stress, which all contribute to collagen loss and ultimately older looking skin.
Take your daily supplements
When it comes to healthy skin, what you put inside your body can be as important as what you apply topically. Products like Advanced Nutrition Programme (available in our clinic) contain the finest ingredients that are easily absorbed by the body and play a role in helping to support a healthy, radiant complexion.
Build connective tissue while you sleep
Sleep enables the body to reverse everyday free radical damage by replenishing energy, building new cells and repairing connective tissue. Because sleep is an ideal time for cellular renewal and overall repair for the skin and other organs, poor sleep is quite apparent in the complexion.
Stamp out stress
Stress is the constant of every day life, that has become a normal part of our society. This continuous stress maxes out our tolerance and lowers our stress threshold so that when stressful events happen it can take its toll on your skin and body. Try to take a deep breath, take some time out for your self and remember that the most important person in the world is you.