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6 habits that help your skin

Featuring content from MediResource Inc.

Your skin is the largest organ of your body, a barrier to germs and injury and a reflection of your internal health (when you're sick, stressed, or sleepy, it can show on your skin!). And when you've done it the disservice of too much sun exposure, your skin becomes vulnerable to damage and begins to wrinkle and show other signs of aging. But when you follow skin-friendly habits your skin will glow with good health.

Your skin benefits from …

Good sleep. You mean all the talk about beauty rest wasn't an old wives' tale? Those old wives must have good skin - they were on to something. When you sleep well, your body gets the time it needs to repair skin cells. Sleep helps your body better hold on to moisture, which you need if you want supple skin. Snoozing also relaxes the muscles of your face, giving wrinkles a rest, too. For best results, sleep on your back. That way, gravity works in your favour and you don't awaken to pillow lines and puffy under-eye circles.

Regular exercise. Physical activity boosts overall health, so it stands to reason that it also supports a super-fit epidermis (the outer layer of the skin). Get moving and you get your blood flowing, increasing circulation and cell turnover. Exercise is also a stress-slasher, saving your skin from a preventable source of damage. For best results, cleanse your skin after getting physical to clear away excess sweat that might clog pores or cause irritation.

Stress relief. Stress makes a mess of your skin in ways you can see and ways you can't. Frowns, scowls, and furrowed brows can deepen wrinkles. When overwhelmed by worry, you might skip out on your skin care routines. And nervous reactions release stress hormones that trigger blushing, flushing, and inflammation. Stress can also set off a flare-up in those with psoriasis or acne.

Cleansing with TLC. Use a mild cleanser, a soft towel - and a soft touch - when you're washing your face or soaping up in the shower. An every-once-in-a-while scrub with an exfoliating cleanser or pad sloughs off dead, dry skin cells. Always follow up with a moisturizer formulated for your skin type to reduce the appearance of fine lines.

Sun protection. The sun is your skin's sworn enemy. The ultraviolet radiation shining down can cause wrinkling, burns, and worse, skin cancer. Shield from the shine by applying a good amount of broad-spectrum, water-resistant sunscreen with an SPF of at least 30, and give yourself a half hour before heading outside. And don't let down your guard - reapply every 2 hours.

The right supplements. Eat a balanced diet, and your skin gets most of the nutrition it needs. But supplementing your diet with a few key nutrients may enhance the potential for healthy skin. Antioxidant vitamins C and E protect the skin from sun damage. Advised levels for vitamin C are 75 mg/day for women and 90 mg/day for men, while vitamin E intake should be around 15 mg daily. Fish oil and flaxseed oil provide omega-3 fatty acids, believed to plump up the skin for a smoother, younger-looking appearance. And omega-6 fatty acids from evening primrose oil supplements have shown potential against the dry, flaky, itchy skin of eczema.

All material copyright MediResource Inc. 1996 – 2018. Terms and conditions of use. The contents herein are for informational purposes only. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health provider with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition. Source: www.medbroadcast.com/healthfeature/gethealthfeature/Healthy-Skin-by-the-Numbers