It always baffles me how people are more concerned with putting vitamins on their face than ingesting them. I have always been an advocate for supplements, and have been taking them for more than twenty five years. I am a big fan of vitamin C and vitamin E, both well known for their antioxidant properties; as well as essential fatty acids for it's benefits on the skin. I can personally attest that the benefits of taking supplements outweigh the benefits of using them topically when it comes to aging.
THE IMPORTANCE OF ANTI-OXIDANTS
Antioxidants are extremely important when it comes to protecting your skin. They fight against free radicals which are caused by pollution, UV radiation, and environmental toxins. Free radicals accelerate the aging process, damage the structure of your DNA, and cause inflammation. This ultimately leads to the breakdown of collagen and elastin in your skin, causing wrinkles and loss of firmness.
It 's important to take antioxidants on a daily basis, whether through food sources or taking supplements. A diet rich in fruits and vegetables are an excellent source, or you can choose to supplement your diet with vitamins for an extra boost. I personally eat whole foods that are nutrient dense to provide myself with the necessary antioxidants. But I also take vitamin C and vitamin E on a daily basis as well.
Apart from boosting your immunity, vitamin C is has many benefits for the skin. I take 2000mg-3000mg of vitamin C daily. Vitamin C is water-soluble, and not dangerous when taken in large quantities. The quantities of vitamin C not absorbed by your body will be flushed out when you urinate.
Here are some more benefits of Vitamin C:
Vitamin E is an another powerful antioxidant. This fat-soluble vitamin is produced in the sebaceous glands (the glands in the skin that produce sebum). Sebum is needed to keep the skin healthy and conditioned by preventing dryness. When combined together with vitamin C the duo make a potent pair, and the benefits of vitamin E are increased.
Benefits of Vitamin E:
THE IMPORTANCE OF ESSENTIAL FATTY ACIDS
Essential Fatty Acids or EFAs are needed to maintain the skin barrier, and help the skin function and look healthy. Without the presence of EFAs, the skin barrier would be compromised. Fatty acids are naturally present in your skin, and have three main functions:
Sources of EFAs
omega-3s: fish oils, flaxseed oil, soybean oil, canola oils, nuts, seeds, seaweed, algae, fish and other seafood
omega-6s: borage oil, evening primrose oil, sunflower oil, safflower oil, soybeans, nuts, seeds, meat, fish, poultry and eggs
Benefits of EFA's on the skin:
I make sure to get a good dose of EFAs through maintaining a diet filled with nutritious whole foods. But I particularly like to take supplements as well. I've been taking EFAs for the last fifteen years or so. If you're searching for a good blend of omega 3- 6, there are many brands on the market (both vegetarian and non-vegetarian). I particularly like Borage Oil, as it helps treat PMS symptoms such as bloating and breast tenderness. Evening Primrose oil helps to smooth the skin, improve moisture, increase skin elasticity and firmness as well as combat fatigue.
If you are at the stage in life where you're experiencing the first sign of aging, and would like to prolong your youthful appearance or are trying to regain some of your skin's firmness and elasticity then adding supplements to your diet is an option. Remember to take an holistic approach to aging gracefully, because beauty starts from the inside out; not the outside in.