One day we all wake up and notice a few creases on our skin 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 skin moist and supple. But this doesn’t have to be the case. Dry and wrinkled skin is not an inevitable part of growing older. We believe the best approach is to moisturize from the outside in and from the inside out. You see, 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, in a sense, 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 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 eventual see this as wrinkles.3,4,5 Now here’s the cool part: Ceramides are 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. 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.6 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 conclusion 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 to only 45% of the placebo group.7
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. Proof of their hydrating power is that 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.
Int J Cosmet Sci. 2010 Jul 14. [Epub ahead of print]
Robert Baran, Howard I. Maibach. Textbook of Cosmetic Dermatology. Third Ed. Taylor & Francis. 2005:177.
Int J Dermatol. 1984 Jun;23(5):322-9.
J Invest Dermatol. 1984 Jan;82(1):97-100.
J Am Acad Dermatol. 1992 Oct;27(4):560-4.
Available at: www.fda.gov/ohrms/dockets/dockets/95s0316/95s-0316-rpt0275-04-Udell-vol211.pdf.
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