Slowing down aging

Published On: June 1, 2018 07:28 AM NPT By: The Week Bureau

There is no denying it. All of us will age, and some of us will age faster than others. And as you consider spending thousands on expensive anti aging products, treatments, and even contemplate going under the knife in order to take the years off your face, you wonder if there are simpler ways to slow down aging and thus delay the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles. Sonam Gurung, beautician at Iris Hair and Beauty Care Salon in Pulchowk, Lalitpur, says there are lots of simple things you can do to ensure your skin retains a youthful glow as the years go by. Here, she lists a few of them to get you started.

Moisturize and exfoliate
Dryness and dullness of skin are the two main factors that will lead to premature aging. So, it is essential to keep your skin moisturized and hydrated. This is true especially for those with dry skin as they are the ones who are more prone to age faster. Due to this, one must follow a proper skincare routine that comprises of cleansing, toning, and moisturizing. Gurung can’t stress on its importance enough. This seemingly simple ritual can really help slow down aging. Likewise, exfoliate your face every now and then to remove dead cells due to pollution and excessive oil.

Wear sunscreen every day
UV exposure is one of the main causes of wrinkles and sunspots. This is where sunscreens can help – by forming a layer over your skin and thus blocking out the harmful rays. It doesn’t matter if it’s a cloudy day. You must wear sunscreen even then and even when you are indoors. 

Also, before buying a sunscreen, it’s best if you consult a dermatologist or a beautician to choose one with the correct SPF for you. Don’t use sunscreen sparingly and don’t forget your neck, hands, and arms. Gurung mentions that, these days, many people think they aren’t getting enough Vitamin D because they use sunscreen but you can always bask in the sun early in the morning and use sunscreen during the afternoon hours.

Wear less makeup
The makeup you wear to hide wrinkles and dark spots could actually be speeding up the aging process. The different chemicals in your makeup can disrupt hormones and lead to premature aging. Too much makeup can also dry out your complexion as it soaks the natural oil in your skin. So, to maintain a healthy glow and prevent premature aging, try to use less makeup and also go makeup free every once in a while. Also, it’s best to opt for high-quality products that have fewer side effects and suit your skin perfectly. Remember to wash your makeup off completely before you go to bed no matter how tired you are. 

Be careful while losing weight
There are many factors that one must consider before starting a weight loss program. Sudden weight loss can decrease tissues from the muscles of your body further making your skin slag. This can cause you to develop fine lines and drooping that are also the signs of early aging. So, consult a professional trainer before you begin a weigh loss program. Go for aerobic and strength training exercises. Do not be harsh on your body and go on extreme diets. Gurung suggests you take it slow and steady while losing weight. 

Regulate your diet
Every day, we are exposed to numerous toxins and chemicals that are likely to create free radicals in our body. Now, add poor diet and inflammation to it and it will lead to a lot of cell damage causing you to age faster. So to combat this damage, you need to consume antioxidants. Food rich in vitamin A, C, E, and beta-carotene are good sources of antioxidants. These ingredients fight free radical damage and also repair damaged cells. They also help in the formation of collagen which is essential to give skin more elasticity to prevent wrinkles. 

Berries, turmeric, nuts, dark chocolate, fruits and fresh vegetables are a few anti-aging food items that one must include in their diets. Gurung mentions that one must also drink lots of water and try cutting down on sugar, carbohydrates, junk or processed food, alcohol, soda and nicotine-containing products as cigarette, cigars, and tobacco to ensure their skin stays supple and youthful. 

Get more sleep
Our cells repair and regenerate while we sleep. This means sleeping for fewer hours can disrupt this process and affect our body’s ability to control the production of hormones. As a result, the cortisol level rises in the body that will further lead to oxidative stress and variation in blood sugar levels. Similarly, lack of enough sleep also leads to puffy eyes, fatigue, stress and anxiety and these factors are certain to rob you of that youthful glow. Thus, to prevent this, Gurung suggests having a fixed sleep schedule. Do not compromise on a sound seven hours of sleep or think of compensating for it by sleeping in the daytime. This will only make you gain weight, feel lazy, and binge on junk food. 

Get rid of scented candles
Scented candles are one of the reliable ways to mask unpleasant odor in your home. However, they can also be making you age faster. Gerontogens, paraffin wax, synthetic fragrances and other chemicals found in these scented candles not just speed up the aging process but also release cancer-causing factors in the environment. The released toxins will linger in your house for an extended period even accumulating in your air filter. So to avoid these threats, simply don’t use them and open the windows instead. When you buy a scented candle, make sure it is made up of 100% beeswax and cotton strings. And, for fragrances, use natural air fresheners like essential oils. 

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