New Year’s resolutions are often related to healthier living with better dietary choices, fewer stimulants, and more exercise. We want to stay as young and vital as possible with lots of energy. However, life is not always that simple, and nature often needs a helping hand. The following anti-ageing tips – including the essential beauty sleep – are based on a summary of articles that have all been published previously on this site.
According to the American biochemist Bruce Ames, ageing is a process that is largely due to lack of micronutrients. One of the main reasons for this is our gradually failing uptake and utilization of micronutrients as we grow older. Because of this, many enzymatic processes slow down, causing the cells to become frail and vulnerable.
Even if we adhere to the official dietary guidelines, it may be difficult to obtain an optimal intake of certain nutrients that are relevant for anti-ageing and beauty care. Some of the most important nutrients in this context are Q10, vitamin C, vitamin D, selenium, zinc, magnesium, and omega-3. You will also be able to read about melatonin that supports the essential beauty sleep.
When you fertilize a potted plant, it grows faster and produces more of its beautiful flowers. In the exact same way, supplementing with particular nutrients can make a huge difference to the wellbeing of all living organisms.
1. Q10 boosts cells and prevents wrinkles
Q10 is a coenzyme that is involved in cellular energy turnover. The primary source of this substance is our endogenous production. However, from our 20s and onward, our ability to synthesize Q10 decreases. Many people start noticing the difference around the age of 40 or 50. Luckily, it is possible to compensate for the gradually increasingly deficiency with help from a supplement. In fact, many people take Q10 to increase their energy levels. Q10 is even an outstanding antioxidant that protects cells and the cardiovascular system against free radical damage.
Researchers from International Union of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology (IUBMB) wanted a better understanding of how supplements of Q10 could affect human skin. They carried out a double-blinded, placebo-controlled study of 33 healthy people whom they divided into three groups. For a 12-week period, the participants got either 50 mg of Q10, 100 mg of Q10, or matching placebo (dummy pills). The scientists observed the following changes among the Q10-supplemented people:
- Reduced seasonal impairment of skin elasticity
- Significantly fewer micro-lines
- Significantly fewer wrinkles
- Smoother skin
Q10 did not have significant impact on skin moisture or skin thickness. The study got published in Biofactors in August 2016
2. Internal anti-ageing and 50% lower risk of dying
Natural anti-ageing is essentially a question of delaying the internal signs of ageing – including atherosclerosis, fatigue, dementia, and death in worst case.
A groundbreaking Swedish study called KiSel-10 has demonstrated that daily supplementation with 200 milligrams of Q10 and 200 micrograms of selenium yeast can reduce older peoples’ mortality by 50% and improve their quality of life. The study got published in the International Journal of Cardiology in 2013. The combination of Q10 and selenium is relevant, as our Q10 levels become depleted with increasing age, and because European agricultural soil is low in selenium. In addition, selenium enhances the effect of Q10. There is even evidence to suggest that we humans can delay the internal and external signs of ageing if we begin using the supplements earlier in life.
3. Live longer with the right amount of sunlight and plenty of vitamin D
Extreme sun worshippers get more wrinkles and have an increased risk of developing skin cancer. Still, we need sunlight but with moderation and just the right amount to enable us to synthesize vitamin D from the rays. King’s College researchers from London studied 2,160 women aged 18-79 years and observed that the women with most vitamin D in their blood showed signs of slower cellular ageing. Danish researchers from Herlev Hospital and the University of Copenhagen conducted another study where they observed a link between low vitamin D status and early death. 96,000 people were included in the study. Every cell in the body has vitamin D receptors, and the vitamin is believed to control five to 10 percent of our genes. Because the sun sits too low in the sky for us humans to synthesize vitamin D during the winter period, it is a good idea to take a high-dosed supplement during the cold months and in situations where one is likely to be vitamin D deficient.
4. Vitamin C – for all-round beauty care and maintenance
The body needs vitamin C to produce collagen for connective tissue that binds cells together. Collagen is particularly important for complexion and for skin elasticity, moisture, and the formation of new cells. In situations with a vitamin C deficiency, the collagen becomes loose in its structure. Vitamin C is also important for the immune system, brain, adrenal glands, and several other things, plus the vitamin is a powerful antioxidant. Fruit and vegetables are generally rich in vitamin C, but in order to get the same amount as one tablet with 750 mg of non-acidic vitamin C you would need to consume around 53 apples.
Free radicals contribute to the deterioration of the body. Antioxidants are our only defense
Free radicals are by-products of normal respiration. The free radical load increases as a result of ageing processes, stress, inflammation, poisoning, smoking, and exposure to radiation. Free radicals are highly aggressive molecules that damage cells and cause disease and decay. Our only protection against free radicals are various antioxidants such as vitamins A, C, and E plus selenium, zinc, Q10, and different plant compounds.
5. Selenium works wonders for skin, hair, nails, and muscles
The trace element selenium supports around 30 different selenium-dependent proteins (selenoproteins) that are found in all cells and which help to strengthen the structure of skin, hair, and nails. Italian researchers found in a study that older people with low selenium intake are far more prone to having low muscle strength in their hips, knees, and hands, thereby increasing their risk of sustaining an injury if they fall. The researchers claim that selenoproteins are involved in the activity of muscle tissue, while counteracting the breakdown of muscle mass caused by free radicals. Their study is published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition. A certain type of organic selenium yeast is especially effective, as it contains over 30 different organic selenium compounds and represents the same variety of selenium species that you get from a balanced diet. The body can easily absorb and utilize this selenium yeast.
6. Zinc and vitamin A for skin, hair, nails, and wound healing
Zinc is involved in over 200 different enzyme processes and is important for the formation of new cells in skin, hair, and nails. Zinc is also an important antioxidant and a prerequisite for our ability to utilize vitamin A, which is also important for the condition of our skin and for a number of other reasons. Sugar, birth control pills, inorganic iron supplements, and ageing processes may impair our zinc uptake. A zinc supplement must be organic, at this gives the best absorption.
7. Remember the healthy fatty acids for your skin and brain
The skin and brain need healthy fats, so if you plan to stay in good shape, physically and mentally, do not avoid fats. What you should stick with is a type of essential fatty acids called omega-6 and omega-3. They are embedded in the cell membranes and help skin and other soft tissues to remain soft and pliable. It is especially vital to have a sufficient intake of omega-3 fatty acids, and the two omega-3 fatty acids, EPA and DHA, from oily fish and fish oil supplements are generally the ones that the body can utilize the best.
Scientists have found that blood levels of omega-3 fatty acids are directly linked to a lower risk of atherosclerosis and dying of a heart attack. This was demonstrated in a large epidemiological study that is published in JAMA Internal Medicine.
8. Strong bone – throughout life
99 percent of our calcium content is stored in our bones and teeth. It is common knowledge that we need vitamin D to be able to absorb calcium. However, we also need magnesium to help clear calcium from the bloodstream and transport it into the bone tissue. Magnesium also prevents calcium loss in situations where we lack calcium. Consequently, the body’s need for calcium is lower if magnesium levels are optimal.
Vitamin K2 (menaquinone) is involved in making the proteins that are responsible for depositing calcium in bone tissue and making sure it stays there. That means that calcium, magnesium, vitamin D and vitamin K2 are all necessary for building and maintaining strong bones. It is also vital to exercise in a way that strains your bones to help them stay strong.
9. Melatonin supports your health beauty sleep
You need to sleep around eight hours every night in order to recharge, physically and mentally. Still, sleep disturbances are widespread and are known to affect around half of people from the age of 65 years and older. Sleeping problems increase the risk of faster ageing, overweight, neurological disorders, stroke, and cancer. A hormone called melatonin, which the brain’s pineal gland produces, controls the body’s sleep pattern. Normally, blood levels of melatonin increase in response to nightfall, but our modern way of living with exposure to artificial light late in the evening easily throws our melatonin production off balance, making it difficult to feel drowsy and sleep well.
The body’s melatonin release is also inhibited by stress, nightshift work, stimulants, sleep medicine, jet lag, and microwaves from electronic devices, all of which may impair your sleep. Melatonin supplements help to induce normal sleep and dream activity in natural way by compensating for the reduced endogenous production of the hormone. Melatonin is also a powerful antioxidant with several cancer preventive properties.
Inner and outer maintenance are closely related
Japanese women have the highest life expectancy (85.6 years). In some parts of Japan, many women live to be more than 100. Most Japanese have a very nice complexion and look 10-15 years younger than their actual age. Science believes that Japanese people’s large consumption of fish and shellfish with their high content of selenium, zinc, and omega-3 may contribute to this.
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