Environmental factors like diet and lifestyle have a major impact on skin health and longevity. Something as simple as taking a very hot bath, using harsh soap or air temperature changes can affect blood flow to the skin which in turn impacts delivery of toxins to the skin’s surface and elimination of substances through sweat.
What are some things you can do environmentally to improve your skin health?
- Jump in the sauna! Saunas are valued purification or cleansing tools for environmentally induced illnesses. Sauna therapy benefits have been reported in people with hypertension, congestive heart failure, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, chronic fatigue, chronic pain, and addictions (1).
- Ensure you’re incorporating whole-food and plant-based options into your daily menu. The Mediterranean diet is well recognized to prevent age related diseases such as stroke, cognitive decline, and Alzheimer disease (2).
- Exercise. One of the best benefits of exercise is reduced inflammation. Studies show it can reduce inflammatory markers in older adults. In fact, a long-term exercise routine can actually re-program your metabolism to make fewer inflammatory metabolites on a routine basis through epigenetic changes. Such genetic changes coupled with less inflammation were measured in one study of older adults who exercised regularly and another study involving a 6-month walking regimen. However, intense training that exceeds an individual’s physical abilities can have the opposite effect – balance is key (3).
- Good quality sleep. Poor sleep quality and quantity, which is defined as 5 hours or less, is associated with increased skin ageing and decreased skin barrier function. On the other hand, after exposure to UV light, good sleepers have significantly better “sunburn” recovery (4).
Our latest eBook goes into greater detail about each of these points, as well as many other environmental factors you can optimize to improve skin health and longevity. Download part one of our eBook here.
1. Crinnion WJ. Sauna as a valuable clinical tool for cardiovascular, autoimmune, toxicant- induced and other chronic health problems. Altern Med Rev. 2011 Sep;16(3):215-25. PMID: 21951023. Accessed online on November 19, 202 at http://archive.foundationalmedicinereview.com/publications/16/3/215.pdf
2. Román GC, Jackson RE, Gadhia R, Román AN, Reis J. Mediterranean diet: The role of long-chain -3 fatty acids in fish; polyphenols in fruits, vegetables, cereals, coffee, tea, cacao and wine; probiotics and vitamins in prevention of stroke, age-related cognitive decline, and Alzheimer disease. Rev Neurol (Paris). 2019 Dec;175(10):724-741. doi: 10.1016/j.neurol.2019.08.005. Epub 2019 Sep 11. PMID: 31521398. Accessed online on November 2, 2020 at https:// pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/31521398/
3. Bachmann MC, Bellalta S, Basoalto R, Gómez-Valenzuela F, Jalil Y, Lépez M, Matamoros A, von Bernhardi R. The Challenge by Multiple Environmental and Biological Factors Induce Inflammation in Aging: Their Role in the Promotion of Chronic Disease. Front Immunol. 2020 Oct 14;11:570083. doi: 10.3389/fimmu.2020.570083. PMID: 33162985; PMCID: PMC7591463. Accessed online on November 26, 2020 at https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/ articles/PMC7591463/
4. Oyetakin-White P., Suggs A., Koo B., Matsui M.S., Yarosh D., Cooper K.D., Baron E.D. Does poor sleep quality affect skin ageing? Clin. Exp. Dermatol. 2015;40:17–22. doi: 10.1111/ced.12455. Accessed online on November 25, 2020 at https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/25266053/