Simple Ways to Take Care of Your Dry Skin During The Winter
The winter is more than half over, but if you are like us, then you may have noticed that your skin is dryer during this time. Cold temperatures, hot showers and dry indoor heat are some of the many the things that can cause our skin to become dry during the winter.
Jessica Krant is an assistant clinical professor of dermatology at SUNY Downstate Medical Center and a board-certified dermatologist. She has stated that the humidity is lower when the weather is colder. Dry air removes moisture from our skin more quickly than normal. Our skin also dries out when we go inside to seek warmth. We just cannot win. We take a steamy, hot shower to get moisture, but we do not realize that the water from the shower takes water out of our skin by osmosis. Additionally, the water and heat strip natural moisturizing oils from our skin. When the shower is over, the last little bit of dampness evaporates. This causes our skin to dry out even more.
You may be wondering, “What can I do to prevent this problem?” Below are some tips from experts:
1. Use Cream Instead of Lotion
Dr. Krant has stated that people should choose a moisturizer that protects the dermis and locks in moisture. She recommends using a fragrance-free, thick cream instead of lotion. She also recommends putting it on after you take your shower.
Bobby Buka, a dermatologist who practices in New York City also recommends that people use a thick moisturizer. Dr. Buka prefers non-petroleum-based moisturizers. Ceramides are natural moisturizers that can be found in several emollients today.
2. Do Not Wear Perfume
Perfume irritates your skin, and the alcohol in it can interfere with your skin’s ability to retain moisture. That is why Buka recommends that people avoid using fragrances.
3. Reduce Your Shower Time
You might not like the idea of showering in cooler water or reducing your shower time, but your skin will benefit in the long run. Dr. Krant says that lengthy, hot showers can remove natural oils from your skin. Dr. Buka adds that you should not shower more than once a day.
4. Increase Your Water Intake
Dr. Krant advises that people drink plenty of water throughout the day. This will help replace the water that you are losing.
5. Wear Your Food
Patricia Fitzgerald, a physician and wellness editor for HuffPost Healthy living, has stated that coconut oil, olive oil and avocado oil are great for your skin when they are applied topically. She has recommended these food-grade oils to many of her patients.
6.) Get Some Omega 3 Fatty Acids
Dr. Fitzgerald recommends that people take fish oil supplements or another supplement that contains omega 3 fatty acids. Eicosapentaenoic acid, or EPA, is one of the omega 3 fatty acids components. According to Discovery Health, EPA helps regulate oil production in the skin.
According to the World Cancer Report, skin cancer represents 30% of all newly diagnosed cancers in the world and UVA and UVB radiation from the sun is an established cause of 90% of skin cancers. Current options have proven inadequate for the management of skin cancer and other adverse effects of UVA and UVB radiation. Sunburn prevalence is increasing in the United States. A study by the Centers for Disease Control showed that sunburn prevalence increased in all adults from 31.8% in 1999 to 33.7% in 2004, with men having a higher prevalence of sunburn than women in all three years with a shocking increase of 7% from 2003 to 2004 among men. In 2004, a total of 20 states reported increases in sunburns among whites. Utah had the highest prevalence of sunburn (51.3%) and Arizona had the lowest (25.7%).1
An important study published in 2005 investigated the use of topical resveratrol to prevent skin cancer. Researchers designed an experiment that exposed hairless mice to UV radiation while they were supplemented with resveratrol. They specifically designed an experiment that would most closely duplicate the human situation. This experiment clearly demonstrated that topical application of resveratrol resulted in a highly significant inhibition of tumor incidence.2
In this experiment, resveratrol imparted equal if not better protection if it was applied after exposure to ultraviolet radiation. So if you get a sunburn you can come home and apply resveratrol to minimize the damage. Resveratrol did not act like a sunscreen but was absorbed into the skin and activated a protective signaling cascade inside the cell that prevented the chain of events that leads to cancer. Resveratrol inhibited the malignant conversion of premalignant conditions such as actinic keratoses. Resveratrol appears to work by a sequence of events that kills off premalignant and malignant cells controlled by the mitochondria. Once again, we are seeing that all roads for health lead to the mitochondria—even keeping your skin healthy.
1 Sunburn prevalence among adults – United States, 1999, 2003, and 2004. MMWR. 2007;56(21):524-528. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).
2 Aziz MH, Reagan-Shaw S, et al. Chemoprevention of skin cancer by grape constituent resveratrol; relevance to human disease? FASEB J. 2005 Jul;19(9):1193-5. Epub 2005 Apr 18.
The Linus Pauling Institute at Oregon State University is the site of much investigation into LA.
Researchers there see aging as an inevitable process resulting from adverse changes in the body. While people are generally resigned to eventual death, there is a universal desire to maintain health and avoid degenerative disease.
Two research projects currently underway seek to define the mechanisms of mitochrondrial decay in the aging heart and elucidate the mechanisms leading to increased vulnerability to oxidative insults that result in aging.
The mitochondria is the furnace or power plant of the cell which converts food into energy to be used by the body. Mitochondria play major roles in calcium homeostasis and regulate programmed cell death and tissue renewal. Any impairment in mitochondrial function has significant consequences to the cell. Mitochondria become severely impaired with age, resulting in high levels of free radicals that continually damage it and other important parts of the cell such as DNA. This leads to a vicious downward spiral in overall cell function.
Researchers are examining the affect of mitochondrial decay on age-related loss of cardiac function, the leading cause of death in the elderly. They have identified compounds normally found in cells that decline markedly with age but can be replaced by dietary supplementation. They term these compounds ‘age-essential’ micronutrients and have shown that two of these compounds, acetyl-L-carnitine and LA, when fed to rats, significantly improve mitochondrial function and reduce many of the signs of aging. They are now determining whether these age-essentials can also improve overall human health.
Their other project involves study of the susceptibility of the body to a variety of oxidative insults. They have found that glutathione, a major cellular detoxicant, declines substantially with age. This loss is due to age-dependent lessening of activity and levels of gamma-glutamylcysteine ligase (GCL), the rate-controlling enzyme for glutathione synthesis. GCL expression is controlled by a transcription factor that becomes dysregulated with age, resulting in loss of GCL expression and potentially many of the nearly 400 other detoxification enzymes controlled by this transcription factor.
They have found that treatment with LA re-regulates these factors, thereby increasing glutathione levels and the ability to withstand oxidative insult. Their ongoing research is aimed at defining the exact mechanisms of these actions.
- Skin cancer is the most common form of cancer in the United States. More than 1 million skin cancers are diagnosed annually.
- Squamous cell carcinoma is the second most common form of skin cancer. More than 250,000 cases are diagnosed each year, resulting in approximately 2,500 deaths each year.
- One in 5 Americans and one in 3 Caucasians will develop skin cancer in the course of a lifetime.
- More than 90 percent of all skin cancers are caused by sun exposure.
Another example of Resveratrol’s promise as a weapon against and in the prevention of Cancer has come from the Department of Biochemistry, University of Texas Health Science Center at Tyler, Texas which released a report that found that the polyphenol, resveratrol, found in red wine and numerous plant species including mulberries, peanuts and grapes possesses chemo preventive properties against several cancers and cardiovascular diseases.
Resveratrol is an amazing supplement that induces apoptosis by up-regulating the expression of Bax, Bak, PUMA, Noxa, Bim, p53, TRAIL, TRAIL-R1/DR4 and TRAIL-R2/DR5 and simultaneously downregulating the expression of Bcl-2, Bcl-XL, Mcl-1 and survivin.
Resveratrol causes growth arrest at G1 and G1/S phases of cell cycle by inducing the expression of CDK inhibitors p21/WAF1/CIP1 and p27/KIP1. Bottom line: Resveratrol literally may stop some diseases in the early stages of cell generation.