What Nobody Tells You About Aging Skin
“Man, has he gotten old.” Or: “She has held up really well.” Class reunions are the ideal opportunity to compare yourself with people of your own age. Because although we all age, we obviously do so at different rates. But why is it that some people still have a smooth and fresh face at 50, while others have noticeable wrinkles at 30?
Skin ages like any other organ
Skin aging is something we all struggle with. When we are young, our largest organ is stable, strong and elastic. As we get older, the number of connective tissue fibers made of collagen and elastin in the so-called dermis decreases, the skin tissue becomes thinner and the water and fat content decreases. In addition, our skin cells divide and renew themselves in old age only half as often as in youth – a good once every two months. The result is visible: wrinkles, age spots and veins shining through, especially on the hands and face.
Causes of wrinkles: sun, cigarettes, alcohol and sugar
The greatest enemy of youthful skin: sunbathing. Around 80 percent of all visible skin aging processes are the result of too much UV radiation. Because it triggers the so-called photoaging, in which more free radicals are formed. These highly aggressive oxygen particles are a disaster for cells: They attack fat molecules, break down collagen and destroy the structure of elastin fibers.
Cigarette consumption also puts the skin under biological stress. Nicotine and carbon monoxide deprive red blood cells of their ability to bind oxygen. The skin is less well supplied with blood, becomes pale, gray and wrinkled.
Also poison for the skin: too much alcohol and sugar. Alcohol dilates the blood vessels and promote rosacea, a skin disease that manifests itself in unsightly red spots on the nose and cheeks. If you often eat sugary foods, this leads to what is known as glucation. Sugar that cannot be broken down by the body attaches itself to the fibers of the skin. This then hardens, becomes less elastic and forms creases more quickly.
What to do?
Sure, wrinkles aren’t all that bad! They are absolutely normal, and they should remind us of the time that we’re lucky enough to spend on this earth. However, there is also a way to age gracefully. While we should see the aging process as a blessing, and wrinkles like a normal part of our face, we shouldn’t feel bad about wanting our skin to look nice and youthful for as long as possible.
But how to achieve that? The two most important things that you can do is wearing SPF on a regular basis and changing up your lifestyle habits. Stop smoking, and try to eat healthy. You won’t only notice a change in your skin, but your health will improve dramatically as well. But wrinkles or not, remember that they also underline the story of our lives. So make it one worth telling at your next class reunion.
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