How do you determine the best antioxidant for your skin? Well, we should as well start off with a story.
It’s like the classic story – the battle between good and evil. The evil? Free radicals.
Free radicals are unstable atoms that can harm your body cells, speed up aging, and prolong/heighten certain health conditions. These conditions include Alzheimer’s, cardiovascular diseases, and autoimmune/inflammatory disorders.
Free radicals are harmful to your skin, too. Free radicals destroy your skin’s collagen. The results are unsightly skin imperfections like dark spots, fine lines, wrinkles, loose, and saggy skin.
YOU don’t want this. As much as possible, you want to maintain beautiful, young-looking skin no matter what the age.
How do we fight free radicals? Enter the good, the hero – antioxidants.
This article is an in-depth look at the value of antioxidants to your skin. Understanding what this powerful element can do to save you from the evils of free radicals is crucial.
Let’s dive into it.
What are Antioxidants?
Antioxidants are your defense against free radicals. They are molecules that can shield your body from any harm caused by these elements.
Antioxidants counter free radicals by sacrificing some of their own electrons. By making this sacrifice, they serve as a natural “off” switch for the free radicals. This aids in stopping a chain reaction that may impact other cellular molecules and other cells throughout the body.
You require a sufficient supply of antioxidants to disarm the power of free radicals. Alpha-lipoic acid and glutathione are two potent antioxidants that your body’s cells naturally produce. However, these natural components may not be sufficient. So, you must find other sources of antioxidants.
Benefits of Antioxidants
Before we delve into these sources, let’s briefly look at the overall value of antioxidants.
Apart from protecting you from free radicals, there are other antioxidant benefits. Here are some of them:
1. Decreases Oxidative Stress
By directly scavenging ROS (reactive oxygen species) and/or by preventing cell proliferation as a result of protein phosphorylation, antioxidants can reduce oxidative stress-induced carcinogenesis. Due to the possibility of genetic damage caused by oxidative products, B-antioxidant carotene’s properties may offer protection against cancer.
2. Supports Healthy Aging
Antioxidants have anti-aging effects. That’s because antioxidants protect your DNA. Antioxidants’ effects on telomeres may contribute to some of this defense. Telomeres shield the DNA-containing ends of your chromosomes. The telomeres shrink each time your cells divide. They deteriorate, which lowers their capacity to safeguard your DNA.
3. Protects against Age-related Eye Disease
The eye’s macula is harmed by AMD (age-related macular degeneration), which develops as you age. For people 50 years of age and more, AMD is the main cause of vision loss. Although it doesn’t result in total blindness, it harms your central vision. For activities like reading, driving, face recognition, and close-up work like cooking, require your central vision.
4. Helps Skin Repair Itself
The skin’s natural renewal process is hampered by inflammation. Antioxidants enable the skin to heal and repair visible damage by lowering inflammation.
The main benefit you are focusing on is what antioxidants can do for your skin. Your skin is at the forefront. Anything you can do to help protect your skin and maintain its healthy glow is significant.
So, it’s time to look closely at the best antioxidant for your skin.
Sources of Antioxidants
At this point, with all this hype about antioxidants, I’m sure you are excited to know where you can get the best source of antioxidants.
Here are the 8 best antioxidants for your skin:
1. Retinoid (Vitamin A)
Cell growth depends on vitamin A. The skin regeneration process occurs as your skin cells turn over.
There are two types of vitamin A. This entry is about retinoids, which come from animal products. Retinoids function as a cell-communicating component. Their role is to talk to skin cells and encourage the migration of healthier, younger cells to the skin’s surface.
Prescription retinoids are frequently used to treat wrinkles, acne, and other skin conditions. But a nutritious diet makes it simple to consume enough vitamin A.
Suitable foods that contain retinoid vitamin A include:
- Whole milk
- Fortified cereals and skim milk
Are these part of your regular diet?
2. Vitamin C
Vitamin C impacts internal and external body cells, and its antioxidant properties may slow the aging process. It was discovered that higher vitamin C intakes were linked to a decreased risk of wrinkles, skin dryness, and a better skin-aging appearance. Some studies have also demonstrated that topical Vitamin C treatments can minimize wrinkles.
Some fruits and vegetables contain this particular antioxidant. Here are some examples:
- Citrus fruits
- Green peppers
- White and sweet potatoes
- Dark, leafy greens
If you don’t like fruits and veggies, knowing that they are excellent sources of antioxidants will do the trick.
3. Vitamin E
A fat-soluble vitamin known as vitamin E serves as an antioxidant and aids in preventing cell damage throughout the body. Your sebum (skin oil), which functions as a natural barrier to keep moisture in your skin, contains it.
Thus, the face and other oilier skin surfaces have higher vitamin E concentrations. Additionally, since those with oily skin produce more sebum, their skin also contains more vitamin E.
You will be happy to know that vitamin E is widespread in common foods. You won’t likely become deficient unless your ability to absorb nutrients is compromised.
Here are some examples of vitamin E-rich foods:
- Sunflower seed and oil
- Wheat germ oil
- Pine nuts
- Almond oil
- Rainbow trout
Include them in your diet without hesitation.
4. Vitamin B3 (Niacinamide)
One of the two forms of vitamin B3 is niacinamide; the other is nicotinic acid. Niacin is another name for vitamin B3.
Your skin’s health is greatly influenced by niacinamide. As a result, Niacinamide is a well-liked additive in the cosmetic and skincare industry.
Niacinamide has been demonstrated to have anti-inflammatory effects on the skin when applied topically or taken orally as a supplement. Besides, it has been utilized to treat skin conditions such as acne and rosacea, a disorder that produces facial redness. This makes niacinamide a well-liked substitute for oral or topically applied antibiotics for the treatment of rosacea or acne.
A recent development indicates that it may help prevent melanoma, a skin cancer that affects the cells that make melanin. Niacinamide oral supplements have been demonstrated to improve DNA repair in UV-damaged skin in humans due to their function in maintaining the health of your cells. It is a promising dietary supplement that may offer melanoma protection, particularly in high-risk groups like those who previously had nonmelanoma skin cancers.
For food sources, you have the following:
- Red meat, such as beef, liver, and pork.
- Brown rice
- Fortified cereals and bread
- Nuts and seeds
5. Green Tea Polyphenols
EGCG (epigallocatechin-3-gallate), the main polyphenolic component found in green tea, has been discovered to possess a variety of therapeutic properties, such as an antioxidant. Healthy and all-natural green tea may help lessen acne outbreaks. Because EGCG lowers lipid levels and has anti-androgenic properties, it is effective at lowering skin excretions of sebum (oil).
Here, green tea is effective when consumed both orally and topically. You can hydrate your skin by drinking green tea or applying an EGCG-rich green tea facial spritz, or using a green tea facial mask.
Resveratrol belongs to a class of substances known as polyphenols. It has a dual action by fighting free radicals and increasing antioxidant levels, giving your skin a better chance to protect and heal itself.
According to a 2014 study, resveratrol applied topically for 12 weeks significantly reduced fine lines, wrinkles, and loss of elasticity. If you give your body more resveratrol, dry patches might become a thing of the past.
Where can you get resveratrol? Red grape skin contains it, but you can also find it in other foods like peanuts, red wine, and berries. It comes in many forms, such as moisturizers or serums and dietary supplements.
The primary active component of turmeric is curcumin. It is a very potent antioxidant and has strong anti-inflammatory properties.
The curcumin in turmeric can speed up the healing of wounds by reducing oxidation and inflammation. Additionally, it lessens how quickly your body reacts to cutaneous wounds. Your wounds will heal more quickly as a result.
If you want to lessen acne and any resulting scars, you might want to give a turmeric face mask a try. The anti-inflammatory properties can calm the skin and target your pores.
You might want to try a face mask at home. You can apply Greek yogurt, honey, and turmeric to your face by combining small amounts of each. After 15 minutes, remove the mask by washing it off
8. Licorice Extract
Licorice is an herb that is grown in different parts of Asia and Europe. Licorice’s root contains over 300 chemicals, some of which have powerful anti-inflammatory, antibacterial, and antiviral activities.
Acne and eczema are just a couple of skin conditions that are treated with licorice root extract. Applying a topical gel containing licorice root extract is typically the effective method. However, it also comes in the form of a liquid or capsule supplement to take orally. Therefore, you can also try licorice tea.
Your path to glowing, healthy skin is made easy by having a sufficient supply of antioxidants in your body. There are additional sources of antioxidants, but the above eight are a great start.
YOUR skin may not be the only part of your body that can benefit from antioxidants. But since your skin is the largest organ, you should give focus on it for your overall health.
Regarding skincare, it goes without saying that prevention is superior to treatment. So, you should take advantage of the superpower antioxidants possess.
Antioxidants are praised by dermatologists and skin care specialists worldwide as essential components of your skincare routine. But they put out a reminder that the amount or number of active antioxidants from product to product varies. So, you have to decide how much to add to your diet or way of life. Compare antioxidant products like apples to oranges.
Each antioxidant has a unique chemical composition. They all have various health advantages. But an antioxidant can be harmful in excess. Before making dietary changes or starting a supplement regimen, consult your doctor.
What’s next? Now that you have the best antioxidant for your skin at your disposal, you can begin taking better care of your skin. As Erno Laszlo said, “Beautiful skin requires commitment, not a miracle.”