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7 Ways To Manage the Stress That’s Aging Your Skin



This post is sponsored by ChromaDex.

When Allure magazine announced they were no longer using the term “anti-aging” it caught my attention. Because, dare I say, aging is good. Sign me up for aging! Looking back at the terrible decisions of my 20s is pretty embarrassing. I want to get older and wiser — just with a dose of “aging gracefully.” And it’s possible. Helen Mirren is still hot!

What’s the key to aging well? Look at stress. Stress of all different kinds — not just work deadlines! — ages our cells and slows down our body’s ability to stay healthy. And as we age, stress takes an even bigger toll. Now that I’m 40, it’s way more difficult to bounce back from situations that tax my internal systems. I’ve been battling a cold for two weeks, and, sadly, wine nights are over because one drink makes me feel awful the next day.

We’ve heard a million times to eat right, exercise, and start meditating to manage stress. But here are a few things stressing (read: aging) your body and skin that you might not have thought about.

Sun

No surprise, the sun is not your skin’s friend. The sun’s UVB and UVA rays cause skin damage and start to break down collagen and elastin.

What to do:

Drum roll… wear sunblock! (And don’t even think of going to the tanning bed.) Along with preventing skin damage, sunblock gives your skin a break so it can spend energy repairing instead of protecting. You should wear a broad-spectrum sunscreen, which blocks UVB and UVA rays, with an SPF of 15 or higher every day. Don’t forget the tops of your feet, neck, and the backs of your hands.

Collagen loss

As we age, the body produces less collagen. That’s bad news because collagen is the structural support of your skin. Gravity plus less collagen equals skin that starts to sag, look hollow, and get wrinkles.

What to do:

Start your day with a collagen or bone broth latte. Try derma rolling; it can stimulate blood flow and collagen production.

Metabolic stress

Our cells do a lot of work in the metabolic process of converting food to energy. When our metabolism is running smoothly it does everything from breaking down sugar and burning fat to supporting healthy DNA, detoxifying free radicals, and making lipids that our skin needs to regenerate. Eating too much food (taking in more energy than we expend), drinking alcohol, and changing time zones all stress our cells, making them work overtime.

It’s impossible to get rid of all metabolic stress – and you wouldn’t want to. I’m not skipping my vacation just because it causes jet lag!

What to do:

When my body is stressed I take the over-the-counter supplement TRU NIAGEN® to support cellular health. Here’s how it works: Your body uses a coenzyme called nicotinamide adenine dinucleotide (NAD) to regulate cellular metabolism. NAD is critical to the healthy function of our cells. One of the best ways to get more NAD is to supplement with a form of vitamin B3 called nicotinamide riboside (NR). NR, the most powerful NAD-boosting compound, is sold as Tru Niagen. It helps up your NAD levels, which, in turn, helps your body deal with metabolic stress.

7 Ways To Manage the Stress That's Aging Your Skin

We asked Kym Douglas, beauty and lifestyle expert, about her experience with Tru Niagen:

One of the things with this product is that it starts with your cell. Have you ever thought about healthy cells?

I think that’s what’s so interesting about this product. Tru Niagen talks about cell health and cell rejuvenation. I do a lot of talking about treating our skin. But when you think about it, it really is our cells that we need to keep at an optimum level of performance,” said Douglas. “Then we can truly be the best we want to be. That’s why I was very interested in trying Tru Niagen.”

Lack of sleep

This is another no-brainer: Sleep is essential to a healthy, functioning body. It’s when we reset our brain, repair cells and flush out toxins from our liver and kidneys (there’s a reason you have to pee first thing in the morning!). Awakening well-rested will also encourage you to eat healthier, be more active and have a better mood. We can’t say it enough: Don’t skimp on sleep!

7 Ways To Manage the Stress That's Aging Your SkinWhat to do:

Adjust your nightly routine to get a minimum of 7 hours of sleep. Give yourself a screen curfew, try an Espom salt bath with sleep-inducing essential oils, or take a melatonin supplement. Check out these common sleep issues to figure out what changes to make.

Inflammation

Acute inflammation is the body’s natural response to protect itself from infection and heal. When the body’s inflammatory response is prolonged, it can lead to chronic inflammation, which is a sign that the immune system is stuck in overdrive. That can lead to all kinds of problems, including accelerated aging.

What to do:

First, don’t smoke. Seriously. Reduce your intake of inflammation-causing foods like refined sugar and booze. Then start adding inflammation-fighting foods like ginger, turmeric and probiotics to your diet. The more good bacteria you have, the more of a defense you have against the bad bacteria, reducing the incidence of inflammation and infection.

Free radicals

Think of free radicals as the waste products created during the natural chemical processes of the body. The uncharged, highly reactive molecules are produced via oxidation—which occurs when your body breaks down food, or is exposed to sun or external toxins like cigarette smoke, pollution and radiation. If they build up and the body can’t neutralize them they cause skin damage and can make new cells grow incorrectly, which contributes to aging.

7 Ways To Manage the Stress That's Aging Your SkinWhat to do:

Make sure you’re adding antioxidants to your skincare and diet. These little superheroes are natural, plant-derived compounds that protect our cells from, and minimize the damage caused by, free radicals. Antioxidants vitamin E and vitamin C are especially helpful in repairing sun-damaged skin and wrinkling. Get antioxidant-rich foods in your diet with plenty of blueberries and green tea. Boosting your NAD levels with TRU NIAGEN also boosts our natural antioxidant defense.

Repetitive motions

Small day-to-day actions add up. Think about how many times you blink your eyes each day! (Hint: it’s almost 30,000.) We can’t – and don’t want to – stop blinking, smiling and laughing just to avoid a few wrinkles. The good news is that a couple of simple changes to your daily routines can add up over time.

What to do:

Wear sunglasses to avoid squinting. Stop using straws. Not only are they terrible for the environment, but they contribute to lines around the mouth. Change your cotton pillow case to a satin one to avoid wrinkle formation.

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