Friday, December 18, 2009

Acne Freedom With Antioxidants

The fact is the skin is the largest organ of the body and it and it needs proper nutrition to function properly. One thing is for certain we are what we eat and our health position is generally a reflection of our diet. That being said, it is well documented that there are some particular vitamins and minerals that are powerful antioxidants that flush out free radicals and toxins from our body. Some even have antibacterial effects and will promote immunity. It should however be stated that and overdose of a vitamin or mineral can be toxic to the body and is not recommended by the general health profession.

The four key players in the formation of acne are:

• excess sebum under the control of androgens
• plugged pores or follicles
• bacteria and inflammation.

Having an acne problem myself, as an adult I personally know how tremendously embarrassing and burdensome this problem can be. At this point, I fully believe in a holistic approach to acne treatment i.e. utilizing a three-step topical treatment and implementing those vitamins & minerals in the diet that are beneficial to the proper functioning of the skin. I mean treat the acne on the outside and on the inside. Below is a summary of my findings that I hope could be usefully in your battle with acne. Sometimes, all the body needs the right nutritional balance to heal it self, these methods typically work within four weeks.

Antioxidants serve as a skin barrier to prevent free radicals from penetrating the living dermal layer. The highest concentration of antioxidants in the body is found in the outermost layer of skin, the epidermis. As we age, the concentration of antioxidants in the epidermis starts decreasing considerably. This is one reason that skin starts showing signs of damage. Antioxidants on their own will not treat acne, but they are a step in the right direction.

Some of the well-known antioxidants are vitamin E, vitamin C, vitamin B, vitamin A, and the minerals zinc, chromium and selenium. All these antioxidants help in the prevention and treatment of acne, preventing the free radicals from harming the skin and immune system, which helps in acne flare-ups. Other steps that I have employed personally include:

The application of HONEY 1-2 times per week to the face - Honey has natural antibacterial properties. It has been well documented by many experts that it is great for disinfecting and healing minor blemishes. It is also very gentle on sensitive skin.

Using a three step regime as recommended by your dermatologist

STEP 1. Washing affected areas twice a day with sulfur based soaps specially designed for acne is highly beneficial. Sulfur is useful in acne medication and problem skin treatments, since it helps to kill bacteria on the skin, which results in an improvement in acne. Sulfur is also an effective treatment of inflammatory pimples and acne lesions. Washing at the affected area first thing in the morning and before bedtime is with a product containing this component can prove over time to be effective. However, as a caution it should be noted that over washing will actually stimulate the sebaceous glands to produce more sebum, which would only increase the acne problem.

STEP 2. Remove dead skin cell and excess oils by cleansing with an alcohol-free toner. This will unplug pores.

STEP 3. Finally apply a product with 2.5% benzoyl peroxide to heal blackheads and blemished and help prevent future breakouts

Keep your hair off your face - Try to keep hair off the face, hair contains oils and will contribute to your breakouts. You will also want to wash your hair everyday especially after workouts.

Take a potent MULTI-VITAMIN - Acne indicates that something is not functioning properly on the inside.
Include CHROMIUM in your diet - As added benefit chromium is well known for WEIGHT LOSS. However it has been proven that it is also excellent for healing infections on the skin. A chromium supplement once a day will help heal your pimples quickly and prevent future breakouts.

EAT CARROTS for beta-carotene (VITAMIN A) - Vitamin A strengthens the protective tissue of the skin and actually prevents acne. The way it works is it helps reduce sebum production. This vitamin is essential for the maintenance and repair of the tissue which the skin and mucous membranes are made of. Vitamin A is also a powerful antioxidant needed to rid your body of toxins. It has been proven that a deficiency in VITAMIN A can cause acne; this might be one of the first things to check.

Avoid wearing makeup - I think the main problem is leaving makeup on your face for long periods and wearing very heavy cover up make up daily. This type of activity is counterproductive. Yes we want our skin to look flawless but we also need to solve the acne problem. Maybe the compromise is to wear light makeup for everyday use and leave the heavy applications for special occasions.

Drink - Water is nature's cleanser. Drinking water is essential for clean skin and overall good health. Water rids the body of waste; its importance cannot be overemphasized.

Do not pick or squeeze your blackheads and pimples - These actions, actually increases the sebum production.

Wash your pillowcase every other day - You rest your face on your pillowcase every day, during your sleep your pillowcase absorbs the oils from your skin and reapplies the dirt and oil. This causes acne; therefore washing your pillowcase frequently will help.

Eat foods rich in zinc - Zinc is an antibacterial agent and a necessary element in the oil-producing glands of the skin. A diet low in zinc can actually cause acne. Studies has shown that zinc and omega-3 fatty acids help to alter your hormone metabolism. I have found that getting 3 grams of fish oil or 30 to 50 milligrams of zinc a day; zinc should be taken in a 10-to-1 ratio with copper.

Becoming acne free is can only be achieved by incorporating the right acne medicine, and embarking on a through examination of ones general health. While there are several acne products, and acne remedies on the market these will only treat the symptoms and not address the cause of your acne. Take control today and talk to your doctor to find a suitable acne cure and avoid the possibility of acne scars from occurring.

Health Writer B.Sc, M.Sc.
Offers information and advice about the best acne treatments and skin care. Please visit us at and let us tell you the truth about this skin condition.

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Sunday, December 13, 2009

How To Treat Acne - Will Antioxidants Help?

You are searching for information on how to treat acne but everywhere you turn you are given different advice. Someone says watch your diet while others say reduce your stress levels and so on. The main problem with their advice is that they make you think that all you need to do is change that one thing and then voila you will have acne free skin.

As you are probably aware it doesn't work like that. The treatment of acne is an ongoing process. Maybe changing your diet will help your acne but it may not be the only cause. The best thing to do is to take on all the advice and test it yourself. This article will take a look at antioxidants as part of a plan on how to treat acne.

In our body molecules of free oxygen (free radicals) float around with unpaired electrons seeking to balance themselves by basically stealing electrons from healthy cells. This process can harm the skin and decrease the efficiency of the immune system which helps in causing acne breaks outs.

Antioxidants stop the above process and help keep our bodies healthy. Fruits and vegetables are an abundant source of antioxidants and can be found in natural foods such as grapes, blueberries, pomegranates and cranberries, for example. There are also man-made antioxidants available in over the counter products.

Studies also show that levels of free radicals are increased in our bodies when we don't sleep enough, are stressed, smoke, consume too much alcohol and live in polluted areas for example. As you can see a healthy lifestyle is worth the effort.

Antioxidants on their own will not treat acne, but as part of an overall plan it is a step in the right direction.
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Monday, December 7, 2009

Vitamins and Minerals that Promote and Stimulate Hair Growth in Men and Women

Nutrition is not just vital to your overall health, but is important to the health of your hair as well. While our bodies need a variety vitamins and minerals to support certain functions, there are specific ones that will promote healthy hair.

Check all nutritional labels before taking any supplements to determine your daily allowance. Believe it or not, it is possible to overdose on vitamins and minerals, and taking too much of these could possibly result in hair loss, or other health related issues.

Vitamin A- An antioxidant that helps maintain natural oils in the scalp. Can be found in milk, eggs, cheese, meats, spinach, broccoli, and cabbage.

Calcium – Helps hair growth. Can be found in dairy, nuts, and beans.

Vitamin C – One of nature’s most powerful antioxidants. Maintains healthy hair and skin. Can be found in fruits, potatoes, and green vegetables.

Chromium – Helps regulate blood sugar levels, which affects hair loss. Can be found in beef and whole wheat bread.

Vitamin E- An antioxidant that benefits scalp circulation. Can be found in vegetable oils, nuts, beans, and green vegetables.

Copper – Strengthens the hair and prevents hair loss. Can be found in shellfish, green vegetables, eggs, beans, and chicken.

Biotin – Produces keratin, which makes up the hair, skin, and nails. Can be found in eggs, whole grains, rice, and milk.

Iodine – Prevents dry hair and hair loss. Can be found in fish, seaweed, garlic, and iodized salt.

Inositol – Promotes follicle health. Can be found in whole grains and citrus fruits.

Iron – Prevents hair loss and anemia. Can be found in eggs, fish, chicken, whole grains, green vegetables, and dried fruits.

Vitamin B3 (Niacin) – Improves scalp circulation. Can be found in fish, chicken, turkey, and other meats.

Magnesium – Helps hair growth by working with calcium. Can be found in whole grains, green vegetables, nuts, and fish.

Vitamin B5 (Pantothenic Acid) – Prevents hair loss. Can be found in whole grains, eggs, and certain meats.

Manganese – Improves hair growth. Can be found in whole grains, eggs, nuts, beans, fish, and chicken.

Vitamin B6 – Prevents hair loss. Can be found in whole grains, vegetables, eggs, and certain meats.

Potassium – Promotes circulation and helps hair growth. Can be found in bananas, brown rise, garlic, nuts, dried fruits, raisins, and yogurt.

Vitamin B12 – Prevents hair loss. Can be found in eggs, fish, chicken, and milk.

Selenium – Promotes scalp health. Can be found in fish, whole grains, certain meats, and broccoli.

Silica – Creates stronger hair. Can be found in seafood, rice, and green vegetables.

Sulfur – Creates stronger hair. Can be found in garlic, eggs, onions, milk, cheese, and fish.

Zinc – Prevents dry hair and oily skin by working with Vitamin A. Can be found in mushrooms, spinach, whole grains, and red meat.

By creating a natural diet that provides the above vitamins and minerals, you can help prevent hair loss and even stimulate hair growth. It is also beneficial to take a daily vitamin that provides the above ingredients.

For more Hair Loss Prevention tips and techniques, visit
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