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How To Combat Winter’s Dry, Rough Skin

Aesthetics Anti-Aging Nutrition

How To Combat Winter’s Dry, Rough SkinOne day we all wake up and notice a few creases that won't go away. Over time, the creases become deeper and deeper, until they reach full-on wrinkle stage. And of course, this is despite our best efforts to keep our skin moist and supple. But this doesn't have to be the case. Dry and wrinkled skin is not an inevitable part of aging. We believe the best approach is to moisturize skin from the inside out.  Most of us only apply moisturizing creams on the outside. Although this helps a little and can diminish the appearance of surface wrinkles, the real issue is much deeper.

Dry Skin Lacks Ceramides

Water is "trapped" within the layers of skin with specialized fats called ceramides. These fats act like a water barricade and prevent the loss of moisture from deeper layers of skin. In fact, they make up 35%—40% of the binding matrix that maintains moisture balance and protects the skin's surface.1 The problem is that the body's production of ceramides declines with age.2,3 This means that the water deep in the skin escapes, leaving the deeper layers dry and structurally fragile. If the deeper layers of skin lose their integrity and separate, you'll eventually see this as wrinkles.4,5,6 Now here's the cool part: Ceramides are best replenished not topically but orally.

Ceramides Improve Dry, Rough Skin

Here's some of the proof of the powerful moisturizing effects of ceramides. A double-blind placebo-controlled study was conducted at Osaka City University to evaluate the effects of six weeks of treatment with oral ceramides in 33 patients suffering from chronically dry, rough skin. The participants were given 40 mg per day of a ceramides extract daily. The study investigators concluded that oral-based ceramides are delivered directly to the deep layers of skin and are a safe and effective way to improve deep skin hydration.7 In another clinical study, a proprietary ceramide — rich lipid blend made from non-GMO wheat — showed exceptional promise in rehydrating even, dry, thin, itchy skin. At the end of this four-week, placebo controlled pilot study, 65% of participants treated with 80 mg per day of a proprietary wheat lipid complex containing ceramides experienced an increase in skin moisture compared with only 45% of the placebo group.8

Don't Let Winter Ruin Your Skin

Ceramides are a family of lipid molecules naturally occurring in your skin and they represent a new class of functional lipids. As a traditional component of the Asian diet, plant-derived ceramides have long been recognized for their ability to promote healthy, youthful skin. Ceramides are becoming very popular in the industry and are being formulated in many new skin care products. The ceramides that young skin naturally produces to retain its supple appearance are similar to those present in wheat … which is why wheat-derived oils have been used topically for centuries as a natural moisturizer. But you can't get enough ceramides from topically applied wheat germ oil to have a long-term impact on your skin's appearance. And they don't appear in sufficient concentration in your diet. Supplementation helps to maintain optimal levels of these valuable nutrients.

References:

  1. Int J Cosmet Sci. 2011 Apr;33(2):138-43.
  2. Robert Baran, Howard I. Maibach. Textbook of cosmetic dermatology. Third Ed. Taylor & Francis. 2005:177.
  3. J Invest Dermatol. 1991 Apr;96(4):523-6.
  4. Int J Dermatol. 1984 Jun;23(5):322-9.
  5. J Invest Dermatol. 1984 Jan;82(1):97-100.
  6. J Am Acad Dermatol. 1992 Oct;27(4):560-4.
  7. Available at: www.fda.gov/ohrms/dockets/dockets/95s0316/95s-0316-rpt0275-04-Udell-vol211.pdf. Accessed October 2, 2014.
  8. J Med Esth et Chir Derm. 2007 Dec; 34(136):239-42.


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