There are so many reasons why our skin ages. You have free radicals, genetics, toxins, stress. Honestly, it's more than likely a combination of all of the above. No scientist has discovered a way to stop the aging process, but they have determined ways to make it slow down. If we can learn to control the aging process, you can actually see the reversal. So here is where the discussion on Glycation comes in.
Glycation happens when the body's proteins react with sugar forming a substance in the body called Advanced Glycation End or AGE's. Glycation is a normal process of everyday metabolism, the rate of glycation and thus aging is significantly increased by the American Standard Diet which includes lots of carbohydrates and sugars.
It is a well known scientific fact that excess sugar can cause a variety of health issues. But did you realize that too much sugar can negatively effect your skin? Actually cause it to prematurely age? Sugar comes in many forms, refined sugar, fruit sugar, fructose, agave, date sugar, corn syrup. maltodextrin, d-ribose, starches to name a few. If there is too much sugar in the body, protein molecules can cross link with the sugar molecules. Once this happens, the new sugar proteins are called AGE's. The human body sees them as foreign and will produce antibodies that cause inflammation in the skin and effect the collagen and elastin production.
So what does all this mean for your skin? Simply, the more sugar you eat, the faster your skin ages. Of course there is no way to 100 percent escape from eating some form of sugar, but you can start being aware of how much sugar you are taking in your body. Regardless of the type of sugar, refined or "natural".
Fruit contains a lot of sugar, so look for the berries. Blackberries, blueberries or raspberries contain the least amount of fruit sugars. According to the American Heart Association women should not take in more than 25 grams of sugar a day. That equates to 100 calories a day of sugar. I put a half a cup of blueberries in my morning smoothie, 10 grams of sugar. Apples are 19 grams of sugar, which I usually put one in my cold pressed juice. So without any other form of sugar, I have exceeded the recommended limit. Who knew it was that easy to do??
So, I recommend, just start noticing. You don't have to go crazy on yourself about it , but just start reading the labels for gram amounts, or google grams of sugar in certain fruits. Because sugar is not only bad for the skin but basically the health of your body. But the damage shows up on your skin.
The more sugar you eat, whether processed or natural, the more the AGE's are produced. When the body is overwhelmed with AGE's, collagen production becomes compromised. The effects of the Glycation process on a cellular level of the skin's structure could result in loss of elasticity, wrinkling, accelerated aging, and a slow cell turn over.
The Glycation process has become a media buzz word lately, so considered yourself buzzed!! I honestly have learned a lot about my intake of sugar from studying about it for this blog post. As I always say, do your own research and make your own conclusions. Do your homework and make healthy choices!
Until next time, xoxo