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Is sunscreen enough?

Posted July 01, 2014 in Products

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Is sunscreen enough?

Sunscreen, sunblock or the combination is a big part of keeping your skin healthy and preventing sun damage, when used regularly.  These block the harmful UVA and UVB, but not all of the radiation rays that can affect the skin, as well.  The radiation rays cause free radicals in the skin, which cause cell damage.  Free radicals have been associated with heart disease, cancer and sun damaged skin.  Antioxidants can protect your cells from these effects.  Beta-carotene, lutein, lycopene, selenium and vitamins A, C and E are antioxidants that are found in a number of foods and skin care products.  In particular selenium and vitamins A, C and E not only protect the skin against free radicals, but encourage cell growth and repair of tissues that are already damaged.  Therefore, they help protect and heal the skin from the inside out!

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How is the best way to get these antioxidants?

As we all know, a balanced diet can give us not only the nutrients we need, but the antioxidants too.  Specifically, foods high in vitamin A include sweet potatoes, carrots, spinach, kale, collard greens, cantaloupe and apricots.  Vitamin C can be found in papaya, citrus fruits, strawberries, bell peppers, broccoli and dark leafy greens. Foods rich in vitamin E include sunflower seeds, almonds, spinach and greens, bell peppers and asparagus.  Selenium can be found in nuts, mushrooms, seafood, beef, pork and chicken.  So, dark, leafy greens, lean meats and bell peppers are good for your skin.  Also, there are topical applications of vitamin A, C and E, as well as selenium that when used daily can prevent sun damage and help make your skin look brighter!

What products are available?

SkinCeuticals is a company who was done most of their research in antioxidants in the prevention of sun damage.  They have a few products, C E Ferulic.  It has vitamin C and E, as well as ferulic acid (an antioxidant that helps with redness).  This is great for protection from solar radiation.  The ideal person for this is someone just starting to see sun damage or trying to prevent it.  There is also Phloretin CF that has vitamin C, ferulic acid  and Phloretin (that accelerates cell turnover and helps to prevent melanin stimulation by the sun).  It is best for people who already have some sun damage that they would like to correct, as well as prevention.  It helps with texture, fine lines and hyperpigmentation.  They have an eye cream and eye gel called AOX eye that has the same antioxidants as the Phloretin. SkinCeuticals can be found in many plastic surgeons and dermatologists offices, as well as salons.  I have also seen vitamin C cream at GNC, from a brand called Avalon that can be found at CVS, and Lumene at Ulta.  No scientific study is available to ensure the efficacy or qualtiy of these products, but they are cheaper.

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