Hi! This is Pritesh Patel, “A Pharmacist – A Herbalist” & an expert in the health and beauty industry.
My passion for learning all I can about health and beauty led me to have extensive experience with experimenting & using a range of health & beauty products.
With my experience and expertise, I’m here to provide health and beauty tips to those looking for ways to improve their overall looks and feel better about themselves.
I’d love to answer your questions about beauty products so go on and ask away anything about health and beauty.
With that aside, let’s start…
What is aging? According to popular understanding, aging is the process of growing old. This is a normal phenomenon in all living beings. Everyone who is born young is bound to age and hence grow old.
But the rate with which this process takes in different living beings is varied depending on the species. That being said, the aging process starts almost as the living being is born. Steadily and gradually, we mature to be an upgraded version of what we were a few years ago.
When we think of aging, the first image that comes to our mind is of a human being with a lot of skin wrinkles, grey or white hair, and a weak body. This imagery is used traditionally as well.
Although along with this, there are certain beliefs that we entertain all the time about how we age. Some of the prevailing views are,
- Older people lose the necessary brainpower to function correctly;
- They are always sick or have many health-related issues;
- They aren’t happy;
- All older people are dependent on someone and many more.
It is not the truth! Many aged people live their lives on their terms. Enjoying a healthy life with family and friends, and are taking up new hobbies and work that contribute to our society.
Age is Just a Number…
We know that as you age, your body goes through an inevitable change. Your hearing and vision tend to get tricky; your heart needs to work harder, your skin changes, and so does your teeth and gums.
But to those who believe in themselves, this is just a part of a new beginning. And the beginnings are always a little hard. They try to find ways to cope up with all the changes and enjoy their lives.
We have dedicated ourselves to helping such lively people; those who are young at heart and want their bodies to be in sync with their young hearts.
Skin is the largest organ in the human body. It tends to show us directly if any changes are happening in our body, be it an illness or simply aging. There are always signs on our skin if something is happening to our body, including the process of aging.
We see wrinkles, sagging, patchy skin that points towards our aging body. And that is perfectly normal when you are in your fifties or sixties. But what happens when these signs confront you at an early age? You know that isn’t normal, and maybe your body is somehow suffering. And so, your skin is telling you to do something about it.
This leads us to two different types of skin aging, the normal skin aging happening at an appropriate ripe age. and the premature skin aging that occurs when your body suffers through adverse conditions.
There are can be many causal factors for premature aging and each of them is just as harmful as the previous one. Many people believe that aging happens only from the outside and work its way inwards. But that is barely the truth.
To understand this, let’s look at what skin actually looks like under a microscope.
Our skin is divided into three layers, the epidermis, dermis, and the hypodermis. These three layers are made up of different components that help to protect the cells, tissues, and organs inside. To break them a little,
The epidermis is the outermost layer of your skin, the layer which you can see with the naked eye. The cells in epidermis consist mostly of keratinocytes (almost 95%) and melanocytes. These keratinocytes are responsible for maintaining the tight structure of our skin.
Along with this, they also keep our body safe from any virus and pathogens from entering. Hence it creates a sort of outer immune system of our body while melanocytes give color to your skin.
In different areas of our body, the thickness of the epidermis is also different. For example, it is only 0.5 mm thick on our sensitive eyelids while it is about 1.5 mm thick on our tough palms and soles of our feet.
Dermis follows after epidermis. It is the thicker most layer of our skin and probably the most hard-working one as well. It consists of collagen and elastin protein fibers. These two proteins are majorly responsible for skin health. Collagen is responsible for keeping your skin tight and plump while elastin helps increase and maintain your skin elasticity.
This does help not only your skin but also your hair and nails as keratinocytes are their building blocks as well. Damage in this layer results in making our skin look old.
Hypodermis or the subcutaneous layer is the innermost layer of the skin whose primary purpose is to store fat. It also consists of sweat glands and helps balance body temperature.
Back to people’s beliefs about exterior skin aging, the process of aging actually starts at the dermis layer. Whether it is healthy aging or premature aging, it is the dermis that gets affected first.
Small connective tissues make up the dermis layer. These tissues are where the protein fibers reside. They are in the form of peptide bonds of various amino acids like glycine, proline, alanine, and hydroxyproline. These amino acids are connected in a specific formation to make peptide bonds.
The protein fibers are what keep our skin thick, but with age, the collagen breaks down, making our skin saggy.
Other factors affect the breaking of collagen and resulting in damaged skin. These factors can vary from adverse weather and sunlight to the kind of diet you take.
The adversity of it usually ends up in breaking the peptide bonds. Broken peptide bonds create a break in the tissues resulting in the epidermis to wrinkle and sag.
If you have read this article till now, then you may know that both factors can affect your skin and cause it to age prematurely. That being said, there are certain things that you can take care of to reduce and slow down the process of skin aging.
The factors we discuss below are mostly related to your lifestyle that increases the chances of your skin aging.
FACTORS CAUSING PREMATURE SKIN AGING
So then, what causes our skin to age prematurely? Why do we look older than we really are? Is there a way we can control that by changing our lifestyle? Yes, our lifestyle can affect the rate at which we age. There can be various factors, but few of them are the major ones like,
Harmful Sunlight, UV-A, UV-B, and Infrared Rays
We receive sunlight in abundance. And it is also helpful in the creation of vitamin D and other necessary compounds for our physical and mental health.
But, harmful ultraviolet (UV) rays being a part of the sunlight spectrum damage our skin from the inside out. In fact, it is one of the significant factors that affect the below-the-skin processes that affect the aging process.
For example, when UV-A and UV-B rays penetrate our skin, it induces the production of free radicals. That damages the protein fibers in the dermis layer and other cells as well hence increasing the aging process of our skin.
Moreover, it is the reason why our skin tans in an unhealthy way. It makes the significant signs of aging like wrinkles, fine lines, saggy skin, and dark patches more visible.
Lack of Exercise
Studies have shown that good exercise routines help to keep your heart rate up, which generally tends to slow down as we grow old. It also helps in maintaining not just your physical health but also the health of every cell in your body.
Exercise helps skin stay healthy
Healthy cells mean less cell degradation and more cellular protein, which helps skin stay young. The study in European Health Journal showed that people who exercise regularly had longer telomeres which are structures at the end of chromosomes.
As we age, these telomeres shrink and become smaller, but regular exercising keeps them to stay long. And people with longer telomeres hence undergo vascular aging slower than people with shorter ones.
Lack of Protein and Fiber-rich Diet
What we eat shows on our skin, not literally of course. From a young age, we were told that our food must contain all-round nutrition for our bodies. Our diet is, therefore, the most crucial factor that affects the aging process. Especially for underweight people who need the necessary fat in their body.
Without it, the plumpness in your skin reduces making your face look gaunt, wrinkled, and saggy. But what you eat is also necessary.
We know that our skin is made up of proteins like collagen, elastin, and keratin. Any reduction in the necessary amount of protein leads to skin damage. Hence, it is essential that we eat a healthy dose of protein and fiber through our daily meals.
Smoking and Drinking
Smoking and drinking are already known to be harmful to our lungs and liver. That being said it is anyways going to show our ill-health on our skin.
It is not the only way smoking, and drinking affects our skin aging process. Tobacco, for example, contains nicotine which is responsible for shrinking our blood vessels in our skin, which results in the lack of blood flowing to the surface of our skin. It causes wrinkles to form on our skin and makes it look saggy.
Drinking, on the other hand, also damages your skin. The alcohol content in your drinks tends to dehydrate your body. And so it dehydrates skin cells as well and deprives your skin of vital nutrients for keeping your skin plump and young.
Regularly drinking alcoholic drinks also results in permanent skin damage.
Lack of Good Sleep
Our body tends to repair itself while we sleep, and that includes reparation of our skin. Hence the term ‘beauty sleep.’ Our body creates more collagen to help our skin remain soft and young. That needs about 7 to 9 hours of daily sleep.
But with our changing work schedules and lifestyle, we barely get about 5 to 6 hours daily, which limits the time of repair. The blood flow and collagen production decrease as opposed to normal, resulting in wrinkled looking skin.
Mental stress is known to affect our dietary and sleep patterns. It also affects our bodies negatively. So this added to the list of factors causing premature skin aging does not come as a surprise.
But did you know that mental stress also affects our cellular DNA structure? Studies show that stress tends to shorten the telomeres prematurely, which ages not only your heart but also your skin.
But instead of not protecting ourselves from these we tent to save ourselves from premature aging by setting on a journey to find the right kind of anti-aging treatment including the anti-aging creams and surgeries.
But have you thought about what you are buying and how is it going to help you? Whether there is any reason why the solution that you are using claims that it can solve your problem? And how will it solve them?
The answer is wrinkles of course, but you already knew it, right? And that is why, according to a study in the year 2017, people around the world buy more anti-wrinkle products as compared to any other anti-aging products. It takes almost half the anti-aging market sales followed by anti-stretch marks products and nature-based anti-aging products.
Let’s see some of the most popular solutions that we tend to use for taming and putting a leash on the process of aging.
The process of complete reversal of all signs of aging from our skin called anti-aging. This means that whatever damage your skin has suffered due to various skin aging factors will be repaired to make your skin flawless again.
Now, many products claim to be anti-aging, age reversals, and youth replenishers. They promise you a youthful-looking skin but forget to tell you how. That leads to a straightforward question that if you don’t know how a solution is solving your problem, then is it really solving your problem? Or is it all just a big hoax?
Yeah, this happens with us often that in a hurry to get rid of those wrinkles and fine lines, we forget to see what we are using and blindly trust someone else’s word for it.
TREATMENTS AND SOLUTIONS FOR ANTI-AGING
The anti-aging product market is booming in recent years, and it is supposed to grow more in these upcoming years with the number of the aging population increasing day-by-day. With more demands, the market ought to produce more because as we discussed earlier, it is not about catering to the normally aging people only but also those who age prematurely.
All the anti-aging solutions available in the market today are either topical or supplementary, and hence, they are categorized that way.
#01 Photoprotection and Systemic Antioxidant Therapy
Photoprotection is basically is a practice to keep your skin safe from the harmful UV-A and UV-B rays of the sun. It can include the use of sunscreen, clothes, sunglasses, etc.
The main agenda is to protect your skin from ultraviolet rays which penetrates in your skin, causing breakage in the collagen fibers, ultimately resulting in skin aging.
Photoprotection is also available in the form of oral supplements that help protect your body from the inside. Systemic antioxidant therapy is one form of it.
The treatment entails the intake of nutritional antioxidant supplements to decrease the damage caused upon the skin. It does so by neutralizing the free radicals and reducing the peroxide concentration from the affected membranes and iron content to stop the Reactive Oxygen Species (ROS) generated due to harmful UV rays and other factors.
#02 Invasive Procedures
If you have tried your hardest to control skin aging, then you might be familiar with these. The method of trying to monitor signs of aging through surgery of any kind that invades your body are called invasive procedures.
Botulinum Toxin (Botox), plastic surgery, injectable skin rejuvenation, and dermal fillers are some of the popular invasive procedures. But really, are they worth it when you can reduce the signs of aging without them as well. Not to mention these procedures are costly.
#03 Chemical Peels
Peeling the uppermost layer of the epidermis using various chemicals to remove the signs of early aging and bring out the fresh new layer to look young. That’s the gist of chemical peels. It sounds painful no matter how you look at it.
And as we have discussed, the real damage is caused in the dermis because of which the epidermis tends to form wrinkles, then how is this process going to make you look young if it peels off the upper layer?
#04 Visible Light Devices: IPL, Lasers and Radio Frequency
Now, this method is unusual; what it does is use light and heat to cure skin damage caused by none other than light and heat.
Take laser treatment for example, it uses infrared light to cure skin pigmentation and erythema. It selectively damages the epidermis and superficial dermis to deneutralize the collagen in the dermis to halt the reactive synthesis process.
Get this, your skin is supposed to look younger once the wound from the treatment heals.
#05 Autologous Platelet-rich Plasma
The process requires whole fresh blood for the extraction of Autologous Platelet-rich Plasma (PRP). Fresh blood consists of a high concentration of platelets, which secrete various growth factors. These growth factors help in regulating several cell processes, including cell migration, differentiation, proliferation, and attachment.
And so, it is though that PRP might be able to induce the process of collagen synthesis by activation of fibroblasts which would result in skin rejuvenation.
That being said, none of this is concrete or confirmed. All this is on an experimental basis.
#06 Hormone Replacement Therapy (HRT)
Hormone Replacement Therapy (HRT) is a process of changing your hormones to promote skin tightening. But we all know that hormones aren’t only responsible for the tightening of the skin.
Hormone therapy is bound to have its side-effects. Several scientific studies show that Undergoing an HRT procedure may increase the risk of a heart condition in both males and females. Along with that, the therapy on females also runs the risk of breast cancer.
There is too much on the line to choose this therapy for skin anti-aging.
What is the Future?
All these procedures for anti-aging have their side-effects. And if not, then they are still scary enough to make us think twice before undergoing one. That being said, scientists are still looking for more definitive ways to bring a permanent solution for the process of skin aging.
Below we have discussed a few theories of various body factors and how they may affect the skin aging process positively.
Although invasive procedures and surgeries may give you fast and instant results for anti-aging your skin, they are not permanent. And hence people are more agreeable towards using anti-aging creams and serum, which may take time but it also gives them longer-lasting results.
Today about 60% of the worldwide cosmetic market is filled with anti-aging products. And with the growing population of aged people, it is bound to grow more. But people are still looking for a more skin-friendly, eco-friendly, and natural cure that will help them through the years.
01. Genome Stability and Aging
This method works on the basis of altering the DNA and RNA structure to stabilize the genome. It is a well-known fact that genome instability is considered to be one of the primary reasons for aging.
The genome tends to alter the DNA information through cell mutation. This causes DNA damage, which keeps accumulating as we age. The treatment will target the genome and stabilize it to reduce DNA damage and mutation, ultimately leading to reduced signs of skin aging.
There are a lot of factors that alter the mutation process of the genome. These are both extrinsic and intrinsic factors including, sun rays, exposure to radiation, chemical exposure, etc. As the genome mutation gets altered, it shows on our skin as it gets damaged.
Reactive oxygen species (ROS) is one of the major ones in that. It causes lipid peroxidation and protein damage (collagen and elastin are protein fibers, and hence, it causes damage to them as well). It results in skin aging.
02. Metabolic Physiological Condition and Aging
Our body’s metabolic processes are the reason we gain energy to go through our day. Metabolism gives energy to various cell activities, cell elements, and molecules. But different factors affect the amount of energy each cell process is provided.
The failure of proteostasis and harmful environmental factors have a negative influence on the amount of energy transported to the cells. Along with that, it also results in excessive substance production like free oxygen radicals, and ototoxic molecules.
Free radicals, along with reactive oxygen species and diffusible peroxide harm the cell structure. And cause damages like carbonylation, oxidized necessary amino acids, and glycation.
That again results in aging our skin by producing wrinkles, fine lines, and patchiness.
Naturally, our body already has a way of regulating our metabolism through various nutrient-sensing pathways. These pathways control the amount of aldohexose, amino acid, nicotinamide purine dinucleotide (NAD+) and cAMP. These pathways are also responsible for regulating growth and aging, along with metabolic activities.
Studies show that in the future, it might be possible to use genetic or medical intervention in them, which will increase our lifespan and bring a reduction in age-related disease.
03. Proteostasis and Aging
Proteostasis can be understood by breaking down the term itself, protein and homeostasis. And so, proteostasis keeps the balance of proteins within the mitochondria to maintain cell health.
But what happens when the proteostasis collapse? The protein balance gets disrupted, causing the cell to dysfunction. This dysfunction has a direct impact on skin aging.
The major cause of proteostasis collapse is reactive oxygen species (ROS) it reacts with the protein and metabolites that increase the oxidative damage. It can cause cell damage ultimately damaging the skin.
04. Cellular Physiological Condition and Aging
If the above give three processes, genome stability, metabolic physiological condition, and proteostasis fail to keep up because of any internal or external factor, then it can cause an imbalance of cellular physiological condition and cellular senescence.
Excessive mutation in the genome, production of ROS and defective protein damages the mitochondria. Mitochondrial harm then induces the rescue mechanism which opens the macromolecule response and mitophagy.
Mitophagy is a process where autophagy selectively degrades the defective mitochondria so that the dysfunctional mitochondria do not get accumulated. Studies show that autophagy helps in modulation of bioenergetics and survival within the neurodegenerative illness through the reduction of the oxidation-reduction process and its harm.
Similarly, senescent cells also secrete signal molecules enriched with matrix metalloproteinases and pro-inflammatory cytokines. It may attract mast cells that would clear out all the old cells with the help of scavenger cells. But this would lead to an abrupt deficient clearance of old cells. And it may cause further inflammation and damage to adjacent cells thus causing cell exhaustion which may result in aging.
For that reason, it is anticipated that the elimination of old cells using genetics or medicines may slower any age-related diseases.
05. Autophagy Enhancement
As discussed earlier, autophagy helps modulate the bioenergetics and survival of degenerative cells through the decrease in the oxidation-reduction process. It also shields the cells against stress by associating in nursing activity through catabolizing intracellular parts to help preserve the energy balance.
All in all, it is pretty essential for our cellular well-being and hence our well being. But what’s good to know is that there are certain proposed ways that can enhance autophagy in our body.
Studies show that in different prototypes of animals with Parkinson, autophagy enhancers like rapamycin showed different positive effects.
06. Natural Products With Anti-aging Properties
I know, right! If there are natural products that help us reverse the signs of aging, then why should we invest in any other anti-aging products and treatments?
To date, there are more than four to five hundred research and review articles printed or published under the terms ‘Anti-aging’ and ‘Anti-ageing.’
These research and review articles report about three hundred different compounds with anti-aging properties. In brief, there are around 185 compounds from the natural product itself, 55 advanced compounds extracted from natural products, 62 from clinical medicines based on natural products or their analogs and approximately 35 from synthesized chemicals.
Most of them are popular and with extreme research, shows positive results for anti-aging properties with different aging models. Some examples are resveratrol, astaxanthin, catechin, curcumin, caffeine, and rapamycin. These all naturally available components show anti-aging activity in Drosophila Melanogaster (D. Melanogaster) and Caenorhabditis Elegans (C. Elegans).
So, back to the question of why use anti-aging creams, anti-aging serums, and anti-aging supplements if we can use natural resources. It is quite simple, actually.
The compounds found naturally are in their raw form, which is not only impenetrable but is also unstable. It makes them almost of no use for all its anti-aging properties because a volatile and impenetrable formula will only go to waste.
Like for example, Vitamin C is a powerful antioxidant that helps your skin by stimulating collagen production, neutralizing damage caused due to free radicals, and provides protection against harmful UV-A and UV-B rays.
But along with that, Vitamin C found in the natural compounds is in its raw, pure form which is sensitive to the process of oxidation. So ultimately, it may not be as helpful to your skin because of this instability.
It brings us to the topic of homemade remedies for anti-aging. We tend to think that since we get these anti-aging nutrients from different natural sources, why not use them topically.
And then we make homemade face masks and whatnot. But similar to vitamin C, other anti-aging ingredients in your remedy tend to either be unstable and impenetrable. Or they will need a catalyst to activate its anti-aging properties.
Hence, it is advisable to use anti-aging creams, oils, and serums. Anti-aging creams and serums bring stability to their properties and help those anti-aging compounds to seep into your skin, giving it a path to directly hit the target.
It is easier said than done, I know. There always remains a question as to what skin anti-aging product is the best. Because using the wrong product may cause more harm than good and the ones causing good may end up causing a neutral effect on our skin over time.
Then, what should you do?
We Will Help
This blog has dedicated itself to helping people realize the way the anti-aging process works and how with simple tricks and products, you can hack it to look younger. We are going to bring a whole range of articles that will make you understand the nuances of our aging and what we can do to slow it down.
It is one place to know what you can do to stay and look younger. Right from which topical and supplementary products are most beneficial to what lifestyle adaptation will induce the natural anti-aging process, we have it all.
All you need to do is keep checking this website for new updates that will guide you to a newer, younger version of yourself.
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