Most of us do not think of our skin as the largest organ in our body, but it is and consequently it plays a vital role in our overall health. Also healthy skin on the outside is reflective of our heath on the inside. Our skin absorbs and excretes both nutrients and toxins, therefore what is in the products that we apply to our skin is vitally important. Many cosmetics, including shampoos and make-up, contain a frightening cocktail of chemicals that can have a dangerous impact on health. Unfortunately, there is little regulation of the cosmetic industry except by the industry itself.
Learn about ingredients to avoid, organizations that are making a difference and safer choices to use.
A safe sunscreen (like zinc oxide) is your best bet when it comes to protecting your skin from harmful UV rays. But did you know that you can increase your skin’s resistance to damage, aging, and even cancer with certain healthy foods?
Plants have their own built-in protection against the damaging effects of the sun.
I love this time of year. After a long, cold winter, how can you resist the sun when it beckons you to go outside?
Before you leave the house, though, be sure to reduce your risk of skin damage. Cover up with a shirt, put on sunglasses and check the UV index to plan events around the sun. Early morning or late afternoon are the best times to go outdoors.
You can actually help your skin better protect itself from sunburns by eating real, whole foods and avoiding pro-inflammatory foods like sugar and processed seed oil! I have heard stories of people who find themselves much more resilient to the sun after switching to a more nutrient dense diet full of vegetables, healthy fats and clean protein sources like eggs and wild fish. Certainly worth a shot!
While I’ve experienced an incredible amount of support since establishing my non-toxic skincare brand, S.W. Basics, I’ve encountered a considerable amount of resistance to the idea of “natural beauty,” too. I guess it shouldn’t be all that surprising. No one wants to be told that their favorite cleanser (the one they’ve been using since high school) actually possesses ingredients that might be harmful. It’s unsettling to have to forego your standby lip balm after you’ve used it for years and years (and you feel just fine). I get it – change is hard. And who likes being told what to do?
You know pollution isn’t good for you. Scientists have connected it with respiratory problems, birth defects, cancer, and more.
But did you know that your exposure to pollution could also make you look older?
In 2010, the Journal of Investigative Dermatology published a landmark study connecting pollution to skin aging. Researchers examined 400 Caucasian women aged 70 to 80 years, and gave them scores based on how much their skin had aged.
I get it. We all like to smell nice. In fact there’s a multi-billion dollar industry dedicated to insuring that we do. We can smell like line-dried sheets, spring flowers, mountain streams if we so choose, but perhaps there’s a reason we don’t naturally smell like any of them. And perhaps we’re not meant to, at least not in the chemically-drenched way it’s being done today.
The quest to find the best (or even just a good) natural deodorant is ongoing here at the Be Well offices. We all want to avoid the nasty chemicals found in most conventional deodorants, but we also want to smell fresh and feel clean and dry!
Before we get into our favorite options, let’s just review some of the ingredients to AVOID when you’re in the deodorant aisle.
Winter air is dry air. Humidifiers put moisture back into the air, which can create a lot of benefits for you and your family.
A 2013 study, for example, showed that increasing humidity levels to 43 percent or above significantly reduced the ability of airborne viruses to cause flu infections. In fact, in a low humidity environment, 70-77 percent of viruses could transmit the disease through coughs, but when humidity was increased to 43 percent or more, that number dropped to only 14 percent.
Dairy is one of those topics that come up a lot here at the Wellness Center. Many of our patients discover that their digestion or skin is irritated by dairy consumption and end up avoiding it all together. Others find that raw milk or goat and sheep’s milk is fine for them, but that other dairy products still irritate them. There’s no doubt that when it comes to dairy everyone is different, and your tolerance can change over time.
Dry, winter air can wreak havoc on skin. Not only does it steal moisture away, it can lead to tiny cracks in the surface, lowering skin’s ability to protect against free radical damage. In fact, if you’re not careful, you can suffer accelerated aging over the winter months.
With a few changes to your skin care routine, you can avoid the damage and keep your skin looking healthy and vibrant during these winter months. Avoid these seven mistakes, and step up your nourishing and moisturizing care.