The human skin, as seen, is the largest organ which is also seen to be covering the body components. The first defence of the body's internal organs. It is estimated to be covering between 1.5 and 2 square meters or 20 square feet in measurement.
Like every other part of the body, the body is made up of cells and serves as a physical barrier to protect the body's internal organs from external pathogens, physical agents, ultraviolet radiations from sunlight, and other chemical agents.
Men and women alike love to see themselves glow and look radiant in their skin, hence, we will be looking at how best to take care of our skin for a great look.
The skin contains a series of both living and non-living cells which help with ensuring that we are safe and free from external reactants that can destroy our body's composition and regular biological processes. Our skin is layered in a way that it provides key health functions which include immune defence, providing enzymes for detoxifying free radicals, maintaining body temperature, preventing excess loss of water, production of certain essential nutrients like vitamin D, housing some trace elements like zinc, amongst other functions.
Having great and glowing skin would depend on several things that we do to it. However, here, I will be sharing with you simple but very effective tips to have great skin health.
1. Drink more water.
The adult skin contains about 63% water, and it is not surprising why this is coming in first.
In moisturizing your skin, water is an essential part. Dry and rough skin is a result of less moisture and dehydration in the body.
Water generally constitutes a major component of liquid waste. Drinking adequate water will help to push out toxins from the cells throughout the urine and sweat.
Sweats and perspiration are major ways by which the skin removes wastes and toxins from itself. And this can also be so efficient when the body is properly hydrated.
You should have a smart way to track your water consumption every day. Drink about 2 litres of water daily. You can use some glasses or bottles to track this.
Ten cups (200ml) of water will make 2 litres.
Four 50cl (500ml) bottles of water will make 2 litres.
About three 75cl bottles of water will make 2 litres.
Two 1-litre bottles of water will also make 2 litres
2. Eat whole plant foods for glowing skin
Food is a way through which we supply our bodies with the right nutrients required for their essential activities. Most of the micro-nutrients are not stored for later uses, so they must be supplied daily through our diet. Invariably, when we talk about diet, we talk about foods that are rich in these essential nutrients that can help our skin to be well-nourished and beautiful while being healthy.
According to several studies and scientific journals, whole plant foods particularly fruits and vegetables are highly responsible for maintaining and nourishing the skin. Let us take a look at a number of these essential nutrients that makes the skin glow.
Carotenoids are a class of over 700 naturally occurring fat-soluble yellow, orange, red, and green leafy pigments which are produced and available only in fruits and vegetables. They have to be taken directly through our diet every day because our bodies cannot make them or store them.
These carotenoids are divided into two. They are Provitamin A molecules which include β-carotene, α-carotene, and β-cryptoxanthin, which can be converted in the body to retinol (vitamin A). The second is the non-provitamin A compounds such as the xanthophylls like lycopene, lutein, and zeaxanthin that cannot be converted to retinol (vitamin A).
Fiedor J., Burda K revealed in their study that β-carotene is deposited in the epidermis of the skin where they help to inhibit free radicals that may cause oxidative stress and inflammations. They also prevent cell damage and protect against sunburn, premature skin ageing, and even skin cancer.
A study conducted by Darvin et al., in 2011 (link below) revealed that topically applied carotenoids (creams) are never as effective as those supplied through diet or supplementation. They found that the topically applied carotenoid treatment was stored in the stratum corneum of the skin for only a short time. And due to desquamation, tactile contact, washing, and environmental stress, they were all gone. While the orally administrated carotenoid treatment was stored in the body fat tissue and then slowly released into the skin layers over time. This affirms that eating whole fruits and vegetables is required for maximum deposit of nutrients for the body.
β-carotene is the active nutrient responsible for the skin's glow and other health benefits of the body.
β-carotene is present in foods like carrot juice, pumpkin, spinach, sweet potato, carrots, turnip greens, squash, and cantaloupe.
β-carotene is notably highest in the summer months, as most of the fruits are in season.
6% of the zinc in the body is present in the skin which helps to provide protection, repair, and maintenance to the skin. Zinc is an essential trace mineral that is responsible for several body functions like making new cells, synthesizing enzymes used to process carbohydrates, fats, and protein in food, preventing oxidative stress and repairing DNA, and supporting the immune system.
On the other hand, skin lesions, rough skin, and delayed wound healing were noticed in an experimental situation where zinc was deficient.
Like every other trace element, zinc is required to be taken in through diet daily, since there is no provision for its storage in the body.
Foods that are rich in zinc include whole grains like sorghum, millet, rice, corn, oats, nuts, beans, oysters
other beneficial nutrients include selenium, collagen, ceramide, astaxanthin, Coenzyme Q10, etc.
3. Shower Daily
The body is exposed to toxins and pollutants daily from the environment, many of which get to stick to the skin. An example is dust. When the specks of dust and other pollutants get stuck in the skin, for example, it prevents the entry of air from entering the skin.
The accumulation of dead skin cells when you do not bathe adequately is also another reason why hyperpigmentation occurs. The skin loses its natural glow and is made to look rough and scaly. Having good hygiene will help to correct this and bring it back to shape. And after a shower, ensure you moisturize your skin with essential oils to keep it soft.
Also, the process of sweating which is practically a way of removing toxins from the body leaves the body smelling after some time. The only way to get the sweat particles off of your body is by taking your bath. You cannot spray a whole perfume to remove the stench from your skin. A bath is essential.
Other benefits of having regular baths include reduced fatigue, improved sensitivity of the body, and immune function.
4. Avoid applying random things to your skin.
These days, many people are all out to create and market several things in the name of dermatological cleanse or soaps, scrubs, and what have you.
Starting from topical application of make-up materials that are having harsh effects on the skin to facial creams. Void them.
Mascara, lipstick, foundations, and so on have become a daily essential for many ladies and women around the world. But the truth is, most of them are unhealthy for the body causing dryness or oiliness of the skin, and they will again use some other product to treat dryness.
The dangers of random application of toxic substances are another reason why many people's skin is suffering. The cases of clogged pores on the skin are caused by this act.
5. Skin health and exercise.
When we exercise, we get to increase our heart rates and by so doing, there is increased blood circulation throughout the body. This will mean that there will also be an increased supply of oxygen and nutrients to every part of the body, including the skin, which in turn nurtures the skin to be healthy and takes away toxins.
Exercise brings about the formation or production of collagen and new skin cells which will eventually lead to the skin glowing and prevent rapid ageing.
Fiedor J., Burda K. Potential role of carotenoids as antioxidants in human health and disease. Nutrients. 2014;6:466–488. doi: 10.3390/nu6020466.
Darvin M.E., Fluhr J.W., Schanzer S., Richter H., Patzelt A., Meinke M.C., Zastrow L., Gloz K., Doucet O., Sterry W., et al. Dermal carotenoid levels and kinetics after topical and systemic administration of antioxidants: Enrichment strategies in a controlled in vivo study. J. Dermatol. Sci. 2011;64:53–58. doi: 10.1016/j.jdermsci.2011.06.009.
Heyneman C.A. Zinc deficiency and taste disorders. Annu. Pharmacother. 1996;30:186–187. doi: 10.1177/106002809603000215.
Prasad A.S. Chapter 20-Discovery of Zinc for Human Health and Biomarkers of Zinc Deficiency. In: Collins J.F., editor. Molecular, Genetic, and Nutritional Aspects of Major and Minor Trace Minerals. Academic Press (Elsevier); London, UK: 2017. pp. 241–260.