Fit Girl Nikki’s Top 6 Tips for Healthy Skin
The health of your skin is very important and deserves your attention. Your skin is your body’s largest organ and is responsible for protecting our internal organs, muscles and bones. Your skin also plays a role in temperature regulation and vitamin D production. With all the fat burning and muscle building you are doing, you are going to want to have flawless, glowing skin… right? 🙂 Right. Since we can’t walk around Photoshopped, airbrushed or with Instagram filters applied 24/7, here are my top 6 tips to improve the health of your skin. In addition to being a certified personal trainer, I am also a licensed esthetician (skin care professional) and I am passionate about clear skin and even complexions.. The following applies to your entire body, not just your face as well as both men and women!
- Keep it Clean – There are three major factors that contribute to acne. Excess sebum production (oily skin), irregular shedding of dead skin cells and build up of bacteria. When a hair follicle becomes clogged with excess oil and skin cells it creates the perfect breeding ground for bacteria to thrive which can lead to acne/pimples and cysts. My suggestions:
- Wash it: Self explanatory, however it is important to note there are many products out there to combat oily skin and acne. Many of these can be very drying to the skin which can actually stimulate the sebaceous glands to produce more oil…. which would be the opposite outcome of what you would expect. Be mindful of the products you are using and if you do not have acne you don’t need to use acne strength products.
- Exfoliate it: I would suggest exfoliating on a weekly basis or even less frequently. Excessive exfoliating can be irritating and drying to the skin and can make things worse.
- Moisturize: Applying a moisturizer helps to seal water into your skin and prevent it from evaporating. Dry skin can be caused by the environment (winter), from harsh products/chemicals (see bullet above) or various other reasons; it is important to identify possible causes of skin dryness in order to appropriately identify a solution to relieving it.
- Protect: Sunscreen/SPF is your friend regardless of your complexion, ethnic background and melanin content. 😉 There are two types of ultraviolet radiation,UVA and UVB. These can damage the skin and increase your risk of skin cancer. Sunscreens have varying levels of SPF (Sun Protection Factor) to protect against this ultraviolet radiation. Most sunscreens with an SPF of 15 or higher are effective at protecting against UVB. Broad-spectrum sunscreens protect the skin from both UVA and UVB rays. Apply and Reapply every few hours when outdoors.
- Drink Water – One of the best beauty secrets:
- As stated above, your skin is an organ, and just like any other part of the body. your skin is made up of cells and cells in the body, are made up of water. Without water, your organs/ skin will not function properly or at their best.
- Water also aids in digestion, circulation, absorption and even excretion of wastes and toxins. Drink it often!
- –> Hydration Calculator – //nutrition.about.com/library/blwatercalculator.htm
- Eat Clean – You are what you eat…. really! Nourish your skin from the inside out:
- “Everything you eat becomes a part of not only your inner being, but the outer fabric of your body as well. The healthier the foods are that you consume, the better your skin will look,” says Samantha Heller, MS, RD, a clinical nutritionist at NYU Medical Center in New York City.
- Studies suggest that foods high in sugar and complex carbohydrates (i.e. junk food) can lead to acne flare ups indirectly because the spike in the blood sugar subsequently causes your body to produce more insulin which also increases sebum (oil) production and can lead to clogged follicles. “It’s definitely true that diet can play an important role in all skin conditions — not just helping combat wrinkles and lines, but other skin problems as well, including acne, eczema, psoriasis — even dry flaking or very oily skin,” says biochemist Elaine Linker, PhD
- Omega 3/Fatty Acids/Supplements:
- “Good fats” aka Omega 3 Fatty Acids are not only good for heart health, “they are also responsible for the health of the cell membrane, which is not only what acts as the barrier to things that are harmful, but also the passageway for nutrients to cross in and out and for waste products to get in and out of the cell,” says Ann Yelmokas McDermott, PhD, a nutritionist at Tufts University in Boston. According to Nicholas V. Perricone, MD, “foods rich in omega-3 fatty acids also help reduce the body’s production of inflammatory compounds — the natural chemicals involved in the aging process, that affect how healthy the skin looks and feels.”
- These good fats can be found in fish, nuts and flaxseed among other sources. If getting these nutrients from food sources is not possible or difficult, try supplements. Barlean’s make a great Fish Oil supplement (Omega Swirl) that tastes great; they have a variety of flavors, none of them fishy. 🙂 Use my link (here) to order this fish oil and when you register your account receive $5 off!!
- Practice a Healthy Lifestyle – this will not only help your appearance, but your overall health!:
- Don’t Smoke!
- Reduce/Limit Alcoholic Beverages.
- Relax/Reduce Stress.
- Get a good night’s rest!
Lastly, it is important to note that hormones, medications and certain health conditions can affect the health of your skin. If applicable, discuss this with your healthcare provider… consult a dermatologist for help with minor or major skin concerns.
----------------------------Any products suggested are simply based on my own personal experience and opinion. I am not paid to review or promote products. I hope you find this helpful. <3 Nikki