Tag Archives: healthy diet

ARE YOU SABOTAGING YOUR SKIN CARE?

Follow these tips from the ZO® team of skin care experts for how to avoid the most common skin saboteurs.

Choosing the wrong products

If you’re looking for visible skin improvements, sticking with a routine customized for you by a skin care professional is where you should start. ZO® Skin Health develops clinically advanced products that work synergistically. Your ZO® doctor will recommend when to use each product, what order your products should be applied, and how much of each to use. They can make the process simple so you will see results.

Skipping vital steps

If you’re getting started on a skin care routine with active ingredients like retinol and glycolic acids, start slowly with only a few products at a time. This will allow your skin to adjust to new products. Once your skin begins to normalize and can tolerate more intensity in the active ingredients, your ZO® doctor may upgrade your regimen. Skipping steps, like not cleansing properly at bedtime or forgetting to use your sunscreen, or not being consistent is going to slow down your progress. Follow the plan designed for you and return to see your ZO® doctor periodically to check on how you are doing.

Not using sun protection properly

Sun protection is needed 365 days of the year, even in winter and when the sun isn’t shining. Most of us don’t use nearly enough sunscreen to get adequate coverage. Don’t get lazy about sun protection or you will reverse some of the benefits you have achieved by using ZO® Skin Health and ZO® Medical products. Sun exposure causes DNA damage that shows up as premature aging. Over time this damage leads to more lines and wrinkles and mottled pigmentation that will make you look older.

Missing out on the benefits of retinol

Beverly Hills dermatologist Zein Obagi is a huge proponent of adding retinol to your skin care routine. He believes that retinol is the cornerstone of every effective skin care program. Ask your ZO® doctor to recommend the retinol that is best for your skin type and concerns. You may start with ZO® Ossential Advanced Night Repair and move up to using ZO® Medical Retamax Active Vitamin A Micro Emulsion as your skin gets acclimated to it.

Giving up before you see results

If you get lazy or give up after a few weeks of consistent use of your ZO® plan, you will miss out on the real benefits. Stick with your regimen for 6-8 weeks and you will see your skin improve. Good skin care formulations are an investment in your skin’s future, and it takes time to reap the rewards. But it will be worth it when you experience the difference ZO® can make for your skin.

 5 LOVELY WAYS TO REDUCE STRESS

Stress increases the production of hormones that damage collagen and elastin. Too much stress also takes some of the joy out of life–so you’re more likely to frown or scowl, which induces wrinkles.

  • Take good care of yourself by eating a healthy diet loaded with antioxidant-rich fruits, veggies, and good-for-your-skin foods.
  • Try to get enough sleep so your body can rest and your skin has time to renew itself. Thirty minutes before bedtime, apply a retinol. We recommended ZO® Skin Health Ossential Advanced Radical Night Repair Nighttime is the best time to repair your skin. You’ll look and feel better–and wake with more youthful-looking skin in the morning.
  • Consuming too many glasses of wine and cups of coffee and not enough water can dehydrate your skin. Drink water throughout the day and reduce the amount of caffeinated beverages you drink, including coffee, tea and cola drinks. Increase the amount of fresh fruits and vegetables in your daily diet, including juicy fruits like pears, apples, oranges, and vegetables high in water content, such as lettuce, celery and mushrooms.
  • Get plenty of exercise and work up a sweat at least three times a week. Take a brisk 30-minute walk during your lunch hour whenever possible, or go to a Yoga or Pilates class after work to stretch and tone your muscles. When you work up a sweat, you are also moisturizing your skin from the inside out.
  • Treat yourself with a visit to a spa for relaxation and to keep your skin in optimum condition. Massages can work wonders to soothe sore muscles and moisturize the skin of your back, shoulders, arms and legs. Facials are ideal for deep cleansing and taking a break from your electronic devices to enjoy an hour of solitude and tranquility. Avoid the temptation of saunas and steam rooms as they can actually dehydrate your skin.

The Skin Health Benefits of Vitamin C

Vitamin C provides potent antioxidant protection from free radical damage that causes premature aging. The most dangerous environmental factors for skin are sun, pollution and oxygen that compromise your skin’s health every day.

The benefits of vitamin C include the benefits of vitamin C may include protection against immune system deficiencies, heart disease, eye disease, stress reduction, wards off colds, improves bones and teeth, and much more. While we cannot always get the required amount just from a healthy diet, doctors often recommend Vitamin C supplements year round.

In addition to Vitamin C working wonders for your body, other benefits of vitamin C include its ability to induce younger, firmer skin, fading sun damage, reducing discoloration, and preventing new damage from showing up.

Enter ZO® Medical C-Bright 10% Vitamin C Serum, a potent formula that provides a high dose of pure vitamin C (Ascorbic acid) that is stabilized to brighten and retexturize the skin. This water-free formula instantly self-activates upon contact with skin’s natural water content to reveal more radiant, even-toned skin. ZO® Medical C-Bright uses the power of pure vitamin C to rapidly exfoliate the skin’s surface. Advanced vitamin C ester goes one step further below the skin surface to prevent new melanin pigment from forming. The addition of coenzyme Q10, another powerful antioxidant, helps to defend against environmental triggers that cause inflammation. Natural occurring lipid hydrates and supports skin barrier restoration. It also minimizes the appearance of wrinkles.

“C-Bright 10% Vitamin C Serum delivers exfoliating and brightening benefits while inhibiting the formation of new pigmentation. The result is a brighter skin tone and reduction in lines and wrinkles,” said Dr. Zein Obagi.

Kick Sugar To the Curb

We all know that sugar is bad for your body, your organs, and your overall health. But did you realize that sugar is also bad for your skin and can actually accelerate the aging process?

A huge part of the problem is that too many of us are not aware how addictive sugar is and easy it is to get hooked. Another issue is that sugar is in just about everything. It is even hidden in some foods where you would least suspect it. For example, canned vegetables, tomato sauce, most cereals, sports drinks and more.

When you eat sugar, it stimulates the release of dopamine in your brain, which makes you feel pleasure. The brain recognizes and likes this feeling and begins to crave more. So in this way, it’s a little like crack cocaine!

According to Plastic Surgeon and ZO Faculty Member Dr. Aaron Kosins, “The best way to get off sugar is to do a quick detox program. You may not realize how addicted you are to sugar until the cravings hit you. Once you eliminate sugar from your diet, you will see how much better you will feel and look.”

Here is a list of what you should avoid during your detox; fast food, junk food, processed foods, gum, mints, candy, desserts, bread, sweetened beverages, soda or carbonated drinks, fruit juice, chocolate, granola, cereal, fruity yogurt, ice cream, condiments like ketchup and salad dressings, and almost anything that comes in a can, box or plastic bag. If you can’t go cold turkey and wipe out all sugar from your diet, try taking small steps and doing it gradually.  Even faux sugar may keep you addicted – like diet soda and packets of sugary powder.

Think about healthy substitutes for sweet treats you used to pick up when hunger struck. Choose an apple or a bowl of berries over a plate of fruit-flavored yogurt. Instead of sweeteners, use cinnamon, vanilla extract or lemon zest to add flavor some of the foods you love. If you crave something crunchy, go for carrot and celery sticks instead of pretzels or pita chips.

Over time, you can actually re-train your taste buds to like foods that are not so sweet. In fact, after a little time away from sugar, you may be surprised to find that the foods you used to indulge with are way too sweet for your palate.

 

The M Word

Menopause is a word most women would rather not ever hear. But sadly, it can start in your 30s and last til your 60s in some cases. Among the many changes that women experience during this time are those affecting the skin, and unfortunately it’s not great news.

Menopausal Skin Changes

  • Dry skin as oil glands become less active
  • Skin thinning
  • Decrease in collagen and elastin
  • Loss of facial volume
  • Deepening of wrinkles and folds
  • Increased levels of testosterone and facial hair
  • Pigmentary changes

The best defense against all these changes is a comprehensive skin care program along with sun and nicotine avoidance, a healthy diet, regular exercise and sleep, as well as cutting down on alcohol intake. The healthier your skin is when you approach menopause, the better it will be able to manage the hormonal shifts.

According to ZO Faculty Member Anthony Youn, MD, a board certified plastic surgeon in Michigan, “The key ingredients women should look for in skin care include retinol, antioxidants, pigment regulators, growth factors, and DNA repair enzymes. During perimenopause, we may also consider doing treatments that help tighten slack skin and boost collagen production.”

The ZO Medical range represents Dr. Obagi’s newest thinking in maintaining healthy skin with therapeutic treatments, new protocols, prescription pharmaceuticals and products that treat a wide range of anti-aging concerns.

Your ZO physician may start you on BRIGHTENEX 0.5% Retinol Skin Brightening & Correcting Crème that contains a potent blend of retinol, melanin inhibitors and antioxidants to rapidly brighten and even skin tone quality. As your skin gets used to Brightenex, you may be switched to the higher strength of 1.0% Retinol. Another one of our most popular products is C-Bright™10% vitamin C Serum that gives skin a mega-dose of pure vitamin C to retexturize the skin.

To design a daily regimen that is right for your skin, consult with your ZO Physician.

 

 

6 Things That are Aging Your Skin

How your skin ages will depend on many factors, some of which you have control over and some of which you don’t. For starters, aging is partly hereditary; that is, your genes help to determine whether your upper eyelids will sag in your 30s or stay perky well into your 50s, etc. Among the factors that contribute to wrinkled, damaged skin include normal aging and the inevitable breakdown of fatty tissue that supports your skin and muscle, collagen and elastin.

However, your lifestyle, diet, and other personal habits play an even more important role and can speed up the aging process. Let’s look at what you can control – so you can get a handle on the aging process and add years to your life.

1. Don’t Smoke Ever. Smoking can produce free radicals, those nasty little oxygen molecules that become overactive and unstable. Free radicals damage your healthy cells, leading to premature wrinkling, and a whole list of potentially life shortening conditions. Cutting back to a little nicotine helps but not as much as you might think. Any amount of nicotine can have a negative impact on your health and longevity.

2. Keep Your Weight Stable. Maintaining a healthy weight will help to avoid premature sagging and skin slackening. Years of yo-yo dieting is another common cause of lax skin quality. As you age, the more weight you carry, can have a dramatic effect on your joints, in particular knees and hips, making you feel older and less mobile as well. Excess fat around the mid section is a known cause of other health conditions, including heart disease.

3. Avoid the Sun and Pollution. Ultraviolet (UV) rays cause damage to the fibers in your skin that give it a plump, cherub-like texture and tone. The breakdown of elastin fibers causes sagging and reduces the resiliency that young, healthy skin has. The skin also bruises more easily, and with additional thinning, may take longer to heal. Furthermore, discoloration and brown spot (also known as age spots) will show up from prolonged sun exposure without adequate protection. The effects of sun and pollution on your aging complexion are cumulative, so they may not show up until later in life.  Stock up on ZO Skin Health Oclipse Sunscreen + Primer SPF30

4. Sleep on Your Back.  The position in which you sleep can actually have an effect on lines, wrinkles and sagging. Sleeping on your side will inevitably cause a deeper furrow on one side of your face. The best position tends to be sleeping on your back whenever possible to avoid what is commonly referred to as “sleep creases.” Just as with excessive facial movements, lines become more visible as your skin loses its elasticity, sleep with your face dug into your pillow can exacerbate facial lines and wrinkles.

5. Manage Your Stress. Stress is a silent killer. It creates all sorts of skin problems, from acne to rosacea, due to hormonal flux. It also affects your ability to rest and get enough sleep to keep you going. Stress can actually damage your cells, and ages your brain, according to numerous studies. When you are embattled by stress, you also tend not to take such good care of your body, your skin and your health.

6. Don’t Overdo Alcohol. Although the occasional cabernet may deliver some much needed resveratrol, downing the whole bottle in one sitting will not serve you well over time. Alcohol, like caffeine, is notoriously dehydrating. Too much alcohol can contribute to other health conditions, such as cirrhosis of the liver, inflammation, dry skin, and a dull, grayish tone to your complexion.

Eat Your Way to More Beautiful Skin

The best healthy-skin plan encompasses a solid daily skin care approach, lifestyle, and diet, so it’s no surprise that good eating habits—or lack thereof—can affect the health and appearance of your skin. Certain foods go above and beyond, offering antioxidant benefits that cannot be achieved through skin care alone.

“More studies are finding links between certain nutrients and wrinkle reduction, radiance, and acne prevention,” says Dr. ZeinObagi.  “Eating a diet rich in whole grains, amino acids, and antioxidant rich foods makes your cell membranes healthier. Skin should be protected from the outside as well, so daily sunscreen protection is essential and maintaining the barrier function will keep skin looking and feeling younger and healthier throughout your life.”

6 Good Skin Foods:

  • Cocoa – Chocolate and cocoa contain high levels of flavonoids, which is an antioxidant.
  • Pomegranates – This yummy red fruit is a great source of free radical fighting antioxidants.
  • Greek Yogurt – Greek yogurt is especially beneficial due to its high protein content, which can be twice as much as other yogurts.
  • Edamame – Soy isoflavones can help lighten pigment, reduce dark spots, and even out skin tone.
  • Green Tea – High in antioxidants and EGCG, green tea offers skin important benefits, including to help reduce redness and inflammation, and enhance skin’s sun protection factor.
  • Walnuts – These delicious multipurpose snacks are loaded with protein and omega-3 essential fatty acids to boost collagen production.

Take Good Care of Yourself

If you’re concerned about wrinkles, and you know you can’t expect to solve all of your problems overnight, where do you start? Should you avoid sunshine and UV damage, reduce stress, change your diet, quit smoking and/or drinking, use better (or more!) skincare products, eat foods rich in anti-oxidants, take nutriceuticals, stay hydrated, exercise, have more facials?

Taking good care of your skin isn’t your only priority, so let’s address the worst offenders, as well as the best solutions.

  • UV exposure. This one is the real culprit of aging. UVB rays cause burning, but UVA rays, which penetrate the skin more deeply, cause wrinkles, loss of elasticity, and photoaging. You’re exposed to UVA rays even when you’re inside—about 90% of UVA rays are transmitted through ordinary glass and windshields. Wear a broad-spectrum sunscreen (like Oclipse SPF 30) every day, and use skincare products high in anti-oxidants.
  • Wake up your skin cells. Dormant skin cells exacerbate all of the signs of aging. You need to activate and stimulate them with high concentrations of retinol, which is generally considered the best topical anti-aging ingredient. In fact, scientists recently revealed that retinol (and other Vitamin A derivatives) is the only topical ingredient proven to provide anti-aging benefits.
  • Kick the sugar habit. Too much of the sweet stuff—either as sugar or as fructose—is the most common cause of glycation and inflammation. It binds to collagen, weakens it, and then induces sagging and wrinkles. Too much sugar will also reduce skin circulation and damage the texture.
  • Stay hydrated. Drinking 8 glasses of water/day is important for digestion, circulation, and excretion. For skincare, you need even more than that, especially after reaching age 40. Water helps hydrate the skin (thereby disguising wrinkles), flushes toxins from the skin (reducing acne), reduces dark circles underneath the eyes, and reduces eczema and psoriasis. Water is surely the most readily available, and the cheapest, skincare remedy.
  • Huff and puff—but not nicotine. Cardio-vascular exercise is good for your skin. It improves the circulation and delivers nutrients. Plus it makes you feel better about yourself, and the radiance shines through.
  • Relax. Many aspects of daily life can lead to increased stress, and that stress can cause or exacerbate a blotchy complexion, blemises, dullness, and acne and rosacea flare-ups. It’s impossible to eliminate stress, but you should help reduce it. Find time for yourself, exercise, get 7 hours of sleep a night, enjoy friends, practice yoga—whatever works for you.

It’s also important to eat a healthy diet, rich in anti-oxidants and Omega-3’s—the perfect excuse to have an ounce of dark chocolate. Peels, laser treatments, Botox, and fillers may be an option, but they shouldn’t be your first choice. What you do every day and how you treat your skin every night help to make medical procedures unnecessary. So take good care of yourself.