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Hydrate Your Skin On The Inside and Out

Vitamins, minerals, and other nutrients can revitalize
your skin and give it a healthy, youthful glow

It's not only what you put on your skin that defy's wrinkles, it's what you put in your body as well. Health experts say that vitamins and minerals play the core role in a healthy complexion, whether it be food, supplements, or even a jar of cream.

"Your skin is the fingerprint of what is going on inside your body, and all skin conditions, from psoriasis to acne to aging, are the manifestations of your body's internal needs, including its nutritional needs," says Georgiana Donadio, PhD, DC, MSc, founder and director of the National Institute of Whole Health in Boston.

So which vitamins and minerals do we need to keep our skin healthy and looking its best? According to the experts interviewed by WebMD, plus new information from the American Academy of Dermatology (AAD), the following vitamins, minerals, antioxidants, and other nutrients nourish our skin.

Vitamin A, B, C, E, and K are a great choice of vitamins to help improve skin health and reduce wrinkles. However, you must continue the vitamins daily to see results. Vitamins are vital for enhancing the nails growth, hair, and skin, which naturally prevents wrinkles.

Vitamin A - If your vitamin A levels are up to snuff from the foods you eat, adding more probably won't do much more for your skin. That said, if those levels drop even a little below normal, you're likely to see some skin-related symptoms, including a dry, flaky complexion. That's because vitamin A is necessary for the maintenance and repair of skin tissue. Without it, you'll notice the difference. Fruits and vegetables are loaded with vitamin A.

Topical vitamin A is the form that makes a real difference in your skin. Medical studies show a reduction in lines and wrinkles, good acne control, and some psoriasis relief, all from using creams containing this nutrient. The prescription treatment is called Retin A, and it's used primarily as a treatment for acne. The less potent, over-the-counter formulations are sold as retinols and used as anti-aging treatments. Vitamin B Complex. When it comes to skin, the single most important B vitamin is biotin, a nutrient that forms the basis of skin, nail, and hair cells. Without adequate amounts, you may end up with dermatitis (an itchy, scaly skin reaction) or sometimes even hair loss. Even a mild deficiency causes symptoms. Your body makes plenty of biotin, and the nutrient is also in many foods, including bananas, eggs, oatmeal, and rice.

Vitamin B6 for Skin Conditions - One of the most significant benefits of Vitamin B6 is that it promotes healthy skin and hair. It helps in treating a number of skin problems including eczema, dandruff, acne, hair loss and dry skin. More than that, it helps in treating serious skin diseases like melanoma and psoriasis.

A B6 deficiency can lead to skin disorders, irritability, fatigue, hair loss, moodiness, loss of appetite, and cracking, dry skin. B6 supplementation treats common skin conditions such as: Eczema, Dandruff (Seborrheic dermatitis), Psoriasis, Acne, Dry Skin, Hair Loss.

Creams containing B vitamins can give skin an almost instant healthy glow while hydrating cells and increasing overall tone at the same time. Niacin, a specific B vitamin, helps skin retain moisture, so your complexion looks more plump and younger looking in as little as six days. It also has anti-inflammatory properties to soothe dry, irritated skin. In higher concentrations it can work as a lightening agent to even out blotchy skin tone.

As we age, our bodies' process nutrients less efficiently, resulting in the need for us to increase our nutrient intake. For example, Vitamin D is a nutrient essential to the prevention of osteoporosis. Our bodies manufacture vitamin D when our skin is exposed to sunlight, but by our 70s our bodies produce only 40 percent of what they produced in third grade. An adequate dosage of vitamin D for people in their 20s is 200 IU; for people who are older, 400 IU to 600 IU is needed to do the same amount of work. It's impossible to say at exactly which age you should be getting this much, but because aging is a continuum, you should gradually increase your intake so that by age 60 or so you are up to around 600 IU.

Vitamin C - Among the most important new dermatologic discoveries is the power of vitamin C to counter the effects of sun exposure. It works by reducing the damage caused by free radicals, a harmful byproduct of sunlight, smoke, and pollution. Free radicals gobble up collagen and elastin, the fibers that support skin structure, causing wrinkles and other signs of aging.

Make sure your diet includes plenty of vitamin-C rich foods (citrus and vegetables, among others), which can replace the loss of the vitamin through the skin. You can also take vitamin C supplements, up to 500 to 1,000 milligrams of per day, according to the AAD. Combined with vitamin E (see below), vitamin C supplements can also protect skin from sun exposure.

You can also try a topical vitamin C cream to encourage collagen production, just as your body does naturally when you are young. The trick here is to use a formulation containing the L-ascorbic acid form of vitamin C, the only one that can penetrate skin layers and do the job.

Vitamin E has been known to erase fine lines on the face, repair connective tissue, heal the circulatory system, and impart its soothing properties upon the digestive tract. Olives and olive oil (perhaps the greatest beautifying food of all), watercress, wheat germ oil, and the supplement Tocotrienols (the most potent form of antioxidant vitamin E available) will add a healthy dose of vitamin E to any meal.

Research shows that, like vitamin C, this potent antioxidant helps reduce the harmful effects of the sun on the skin. According to studies published by the AAD, taking 400 units of vitamin E daily appeared to reduce the risk of sun damage to cells as well as reduce the production of cancer-causing cells. Some studies show that when vitamins E and A are taken together, people show a 70% reduction in basal cell carcinoma, a common form of skin cancer.

Vitamin E can also help reduce wrinkles and make your skin look and feel smoother. (Be aware, though, that some recent research warns that large doses of vitamin E can be harmful. Stay with 400 international units per day or less to be on the safe side.) Used in a cream, lotion, or serum form, vitamin E can soothe dry, rough skin. When combined with vitamin C in a lotion, it's highly protective against sun damage, says the AAD.

Vitamin K as a nutrient responsible for helping blood clot, it won't do much for your skin from the inside. But studies presented to the AAD in 2003 show topical vitamin K does work well to reduce under eye circles as well as bruises. When combined with vitamin A in a cream or serum, vitamin K can be even more effective for those dark circles.

Most health experts agree that most of us don't need to supplement our mineral intake. This is even more true if you drink spring water, which often contains healthful, natural supplies of important minerals. Studies show that washing your face with mineral water can help reduce many common skin irritations, and the mineral content may help some skin cells absorb the moisture better.

DMAE Another powerful antioxidant, this nutrient has one of the strongest appetites for free radicals. It works mostly by deactivating their power to harm skin cells. It also helps stabilize the membrane around the outside of each cell so that assaults from sun damage and cigarette smoke are reduced.

According to Sullivan, DMAE also prevents the formation of lipofucsin, the brown pigment that becomes the basis for age spots. As with alpha-lipoic acid, you can take DMAE in supplements and in topical creams.

Alpha Lipoic Acid - we see it in skin care products, which indeed is wonderful for our skin, however taking it via pill form works miracles.

Alpha Lipoic Acid is a new ultra powerful antioxidant, hundreds of times more potent than vitamin C or E, it is a super boost for aging skin. In fact, Alpha-lipoic acid is showing remarkable effects against premature aging in the skin due to its anti oxidant properties.

In one study alpha-lipoic acid reduced mild-to-moderate wrinkles by up to 50 percent, whereas fine lines have almost disappeared. It does this research says because it's both fat and water soluble allowing it to penetrate and nourish the skin cells from both the inside and the outside of the body. Other known antioxidants can only affect cells from one or the other and not both.

More specifically, explains Mary Sullivan, alpha-lipoic acid, like vitamins C and E, neutralizes skin cell damage caused by free radicals. Some studies have shown it can repair the damage to skin's DNA, thus reducing the risk of cancer. Health experts say it also helps other vitamins work more effectively to rebuild skin cells damaged by environmental assaults, such as smoke and pollution. You can take a daily alpha-lipoic acid supplement which is 100% more powerful than when you used topically.

Alpha Lipoic Acid is a vitamin like antioxidant that contains antioxidant properties that help fight free radicals in the body.* Free radicals may contribute to the premature aging of cells.* As an antioxidant, Alpha Lipoic Acid also helps revitalize the underlying structure of skin, so it can look healthier and more radiant.*

Because of its powerful antioxidant qualities it is able to protect proteins against daily damage of free radicals. This is exciting news because it may have important implications for aging and is now being touted as the new "wrinkle cure'. Because it works synergistically with other vitamins to rebuild damaged skin cells from toxins such as pollution and smoke, alpha lipoic acid should be a part of every woman's skin care regimen.

Alpha-lipoic acid is an internal Moisturizer for Skin & Joints ...made with...BioCell Collagen, it moisturizes & rejuvenates skin, smoothes premature line/wrinkles, and lubricates & cushions joints.

You may have heard of alpha-lipoic acid as "the miracle in a jar" for its anti-aging effects. It's a newer, ultra-potent antioxidant that helps fight future skin damage and helps repair past damage. Alpha-lipoic acid has been referred to as a "universal antioxidant" because it's soluble in both water and oil, which permits its entrance to all parts of the cell. Due to this quality, it is believed that alpha-lipoic acid can provide the greatest protection against damaging free radicals when compared with other antioxidants. Alpha-lipoic acid diminishes fine lines, gives skin a healthy glow and boosts levels of other antioxidants, such as vitamin C.

Now you can take it in pill form and enjoy other enhancing skin care products that contain powerful skin rejuvinating properties such as Argireline® and Matrixyl®. Yes, now you can have it all.

Flax seed Oil - Flaxseed is known to have the richest deposits of Omega 3-fatty acids, which are necessary for anyone who wants supple skin. Flaxseed Oil Pills taken with Vitamin B6 daily, not only restores elastin, it works wonders for carpel tunnel syndrom and arthritis because it coushins the bones.

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