Does Too Much Sugar Really Age Your Skin?
Many patients are under the impression that once their skin starts showing signs of aging, there is nothing they can do to reverse the process – other than have a facelift performed. However, more and more research is coming to light showing that a person’s diet – especially one that is high in sugar – plays a tremendous role in their overall appearance, especially when it comes to the development of wrinkles and fine lines.
Direct Link Discovered
Scientists at the Leiden University Medical Center in the Netherlands and Unilever in the UK engaged in research that involved measuring blood sugar levels of 600 men and women between the ages of 50 and 70. Findings showed that those who had the higher blood sugar readings were the ones who looked older. For each 1mm/liter increase in blood sugar, the perceived age of the patient in question rose by as much as 5 months. Dr. David Gunn, a senior scientist who assisted with the trial, stated, “We took into account other factors such as whether or not that person smoked and yet still the effects were clear – the higher the blood glucose, the older the person looked.”
Dr. Gunn further stated, “Those who looked the oldest of all were the diabetics in the group. Because of their condition, they will have had the high levels of glucose for a long period of time.”
Reduce Sugar Consumption to Look Younger
According to Dr. Aamer Khan, cosmetic dermatologist who is also the medical director of the Harley Street Skin Clinic, patients who spend a lot of money on expensive skin creams to help them look younger are defeating the object if they are consuming a high sugar diet. “Yes, you can protect and moisturize your skin from the outside with creams, but you need to feed and stimulate the growth of good strong skin cells from inside too and sugar will sabotage that,” he said.
Reverse the Process of Glycation
Sugar causes the skin to lose the elasticity that promotes a youthful appearance by means of a process called glycation. Dr. Ross Perry, a cosmetic doctor at the Cosmedics Clinic in London, stated, “Essentially what happens is that sugar attaches itself to any protein in the body and produces harmful molecules called ‘advanced glycation end products.’ These reduce the effectiveness of elastin and collagen, proteins in the skin that help maintain its youthful appearance.”
He further stated, “Normally collagen bulks out the skin and give it a younger plump look. Elastin gives the skin recoil so that when you smile or frown your skin goes back to how it was. If you persistently eat a high-sugar diet, then as a result, the collagen and elastin will become more rigid, so it will become easier for wrinkles to form and the skin will lose that youthful plumpness. It also makes it harder for the cells in the skin to repair normal damage.”
Anyone who is willing to drastically reduce their sugar consumption in order to look younger again will be able to see results within a few weeks at the most. In most cases, the skin will seem a lot less dry within a few days of cutting down on sugar consumption as well. So, the consensus is out – if you are willing to change your diet and reduce your sugar intake, you could very well end up looking younger without having to resort to cosmetic surgery.