Tag Archives: antioxidants

What’s Great About the Kitavan Diet

Let’s take a moment to travel to a timeless, magical place; a place where the water is crystal clear and telecommunication is non-existent. A remote idyllic tropical island, of coral reefs, of Skull Caves, Orchid Gardens, and smiling faces. Welcome to Kitava Island, off the coast of Papua, New Guinea in the Pacific Ocean. While many find the quaintness of the island its most charming attraction, others may argue that Kitava is way ahead of its time. You see, Kitava, New Guinea may not be a leader in technology, but they do have something far superior and way ahead of the times as compared to most other places in the world. It has the Kitavan Diet.

Kitavan diet

Kitavan Diet
Perhaps the most noticeable thing about the Kitavans is what they don’t have; there is practically no diabetes, acne, cardiovascular disease, dementia, or blood pressure difficulty. What they do have, however, is an abundance of food. But, despite this abundance, they do not suffer from obesity, and they all have low diastolic blood pressure.

Research finds that the good health in Kitava is due to the local foods. Fresh fruit, tubers, coconut, and fish make up a good percentage of the Kitavan diet, with an extremely low consumption of Western food. The diet is also virtually absent of dairy products, coffee, tea, and alcohol, and contains very little margarine, oils, sugars, grain, and cereals. The most commonly eaten tubers are yam, sweet potato, cassava and taro, while banana, papaya, guava, pineapple, watermelon, and mango top the list of fruits. The fat intake is low, and most of the fat that is consumed is saturated fat or omega-3 fat from seafood.

Foods with Low GI
Another thing common to the foods found in the Kitavan diet is their low rating on the glycemic index, a measure of the ability of food with carbohydrates to raise glucose, or blood sugar, levels. A diet rich in high GI foods can tax the body, leading to excess body weight, heart disease, increase of diabetic symptoms, high cholesterol levels, and lack of energy. Tubers, which play a large part in the Kitavan diet, are among the islander’s primary source of carbohydrates and have a relatively low GI rating.

Sweet potato

Sweet Potatoes
Sweet potatoes are loaded with vitamin C and beta carotene, both known to be powerful antioxidants which protect against aging and cancer. They are also known to increase levels of adiponectin, a protein hormone which offers health benefits to diabetics and pre -diabetics and may also protect against atherogenesis, the abnormal formation of fat deposits within the arteries; this would explain the low incidence of heart disease and diabetes on the island.

Coconuts
Besides having anti-fungal, anti-viral and anti-bacterial properties, the triglycerides in coconut may promote weight loss. A study published in the International Journal of Obesity and Metabolic disorders found that coconuts increased calorie burn and decreased storage of fat in overweight men. Another study found that the fat consumed in coconut oil could increase the metabolism of fat and calorie expenditure in women.

Coconut

The Kitavan Diet and Acne
In 1990, Swedish general practitioner, Steffan Lindeberg, performed health examinations on more than a thousand Kitavans, age 10 years and older, with 25% of the subjects age 15 to 25 and found not a single case of acne. This is likely attributable to lifestyle and diet, rather than genetic factors, since Pacific Islanders with similar ethnic backgrounds living in more westernized societies were found to have a higher prevalence of acne.

What do you think about the Kitavan diet? Have we got something here? Weigh in with your opinions. We value them highly.

The Benefits Of A Sprinkle Of Chia Seeds

SNL enthusiasts may recall the ‘Chia Head” sketch, featuring Kevin Nealon, Chris Rock, and David Spade as balding men who have “tried everything” and failed miserably in their futile attempts to regrow hair. The commercial spoof shows the actors throwing ineffective hair products in the garbage only to be pleasantly surprised by the discovery of “Chia Head.” This product, much like the “Chia Pet” novelty, requires the men to rub the gloppy formula on their heads, only to wake up the next morning having sprouted plantlike follicles in varying afro-like shapes – the most hilarious of which is probably Chris Rock’s Marge Simpson-inspired beehive-like do.

Funny as the sketch was, it is perhaps more amusing to realize that hair growth is one of the many health benefits of chia seeds. If only the SNL alum had known; a little sprinkle of chia really could’ve gone a long way.

Chia seeds

High in Nutrients, Low In Calories
It’s no accident that “chia” is the ancient Mayan word for strength. These tiny black seeds, related to the mint, contain 11 grams of fiber, 4 grams of protein, 5 grams of omega-3s, as well as a decent percentage of calcium, magnesium, manganese, and phosphorous. Chia seeds are a gluten-free, GMO-free, whole grain food, and one ounce contains a low 137 calories and one gram of carbohydrate.

Antioxidant Rich
The antioxidants in chia seeds prevent the production of free radicals that can cause damage to cell molecules and contribute to cancer and aging.

Fiber Rich
Although chia seeds have 12 grams of carbs per ounce, 11 of those are fiber, which means that these 11 grams are not digested by the body, do not raise blood sugar, and don’t require insulin for disposal. The high-fiber content means that the seeds can absorb as much as 10 to 12 times their weight in water, thereby increasing fullness, slowing food absorption, and decreasing feelings of hunger. Chia seeds are one of the best fiber sources in the world, helping to feed good bacteria in the intestine and promoting proper digestion.

High In Protein
Chia seeds are about 14% protein by weight and contain a good balance of amino acids, which assists in helping our body to process the proteins in them. High protein can reduce appetite and is shown to lower food cravings by 60% and the need for nighttime snacking by 50%.

Can Improve Athletic Performance
A recent study was conducted to find out if there was truth to the legend that Mayans and Aztecs used chia seeds as high-performance fuel. Six participants were given carb-loaded Gatorade or a mix of Gatorade and chia seeds. After a workout involving an hour on the treadmill followed by a 10-kilometer run, it was discovered that both groups performed equally well, suggesting that the chia seeds were just as effective as Gatorade in fueling athletic performance.

Incorporating Chia Seeds In Your Diet
Chia seed can be eaten raw or added to puddings, porridges, and baked goods. They can be sprinkled on yogurt, cereal, vegetables, and rice and can even be used as egg substitutes because of their ability to absorb water and fat. Recommended dosage is 20 grams, or about 1.5 tablespoons, twice daily.

Do you have any chia-seed recommendations for us? We’d love to hear from you!

Cinnamon sticks and powder

Sprinkle On A Little Cinnamon

Comedian Jerry Seinfeld once said, “Cinnamon. It should be on tables in restaurants along with salt and pepper. Anytime someone says, “Oooh, this is so good- what is this?’ The answer invariably comes back, ‘cinnamon.’ Cinnamon. Again and again.” Indeed, one can’t go too wrong with cinnamon. It goes with everything from toast to apples, tea to coffee, rice pudding to noodle pudding. Even Pizza Hut can hardly deny the boost to their sales caused by the addition of cinnamon sticks to their dessert menu. And now cinnamon can add another feather in its cap. It’s good for you!

Source of Antioxidants
Cinnamon is full of antioxidants that protect against free radical damage and slow the process of aging. Researchers have found forty-one protective compounds in the spice, and that’s only to date!

The OTAC scale, used to measure antioxidant concentration ranks cinnamon a respectable number 7 in all herbs, spices, and foods and was the hands down antioxidant- concentration winner in the herbs and spices category, beating out rosemary, thyme and oregano.

Cinnamon in a mug

Inflammatory
The antioxidants in cinnamon also contribute to its anti -inflammatory effects, which can help decrease the risk of cancer, diminish decline of brain function, and heart disease. Research has revealed the presence of over seven kinds of flavanoid compounds in cinnamon, which are known for their ability in fighting disease -causing inflammation throughout the body. Because of its anti-inflammatory properties, cinnamon is also an effective source of pain relief, helping to soothe muscle soreness, allergic reactions, and PMS pains.

Heart Health
Another health benefit of cinnamon is its ability to reduce cholesterol levels and high blood pressure, two of the most common factors for heart disease. Compounds in the spice can reduce LDL (bad) cholesterol while stabilizing HDL (good) cholesterol, promoting heart health.

Research also shows cinnamon boosts blood circulation and aids the body in its ability to repair tissue after it’s been damaged, including heart tissue.

Fights Diabetes
Also an effective anti-diabetic, cinnamon can help lower levels of blood sugar and improve insulin sensitivity. This is because cinnamon is capable of blocking enzymes that allow the blood to absorb glucose, decreasing the amount of sugars that enter the bloodstream, which is especially beneficial to diabetics.

Cinnamon powder

Prevents Cognitive Decline
Cinnamon protects cognitive function by activating proteins that protect brain cells from damage and reduces oxidative stress. Furthermore, its high concentration of antioxidants and anti-inflammatory compounds make it a candidate for possible therapeutic treatment in preventing age-related disease.

Lowers Risk of Cancer
You can also add the ability to lower cancer risk to this spice’s already impressive resume. Cinnamon protects against cell mutation, DNA damage and tumor growth, Studies show that is the compound cinnamaldehyde that is responsible for the inhibition of cancer growth and also the cause of apoptosis, the self-destruction of cancer cells.

Protects Against Bad Breath
Cinnamon Trident, anyone? Studies show cinnamon contains extracts that protect against bacteria that cause bad breath, cavities and tooth decay. Furthermore, the essential oils in cinnamon have proven more potent than any other known plant extracts. It can be used naturally as an anti-bacterial mouthwash and as a flavoring agent in chewing gum to remove oral bacteria.

What do your sprinkle your cinnamon on? Let us know your innovative ways of spicing things up!

Drink Up…It’s National Merlot Day

Merlot wine It all started with the 2004 movie, “Sideways” when the fun loving Jack, played by Thomas Haden Church asks the uptight Miles, played by Paul Giametti to join him for a glass of Merlot. Miles replies by saying, “If anyone orders Merlot, I’m leaving; I am not drinking any effing Merlot.” What followed was what became known as the “Sideways Effect on Merlot.” Following the movies release, grocery store sales of the wine continued to fall at 1.4% a year after 2005, with many producers blaming the movie.

But, hey, what’s wrong with Merlot? So it may not have a complex flavor, but it is still a highly drinkable and appealing wine. What’s wrong with being easy? If Miles thinks he’s too good to drink it, he’s got self esteem problems. November 7 is National Merlot Day, so if you like Merlot, go out and show off how much self esteem you have.

What is Merlot?
Merlot means “Little Blackbird” in French and is second only to Cabernet Sauvignon as America’s most popular choice of grape. Often described as ripe, elegant and soft, Merlots are easy drinking reds that pair well with food and are also great alone. Because of their approachability, these wines are often recommended to the novice wine drinker as their first red.

merlot wine being poured History of Merlot
The grape was first used to make wine in the 1700’s in the Bordeaux region when it was labeled by a French winemaker as an ingredient in his wine blend. Following this, the grape began to gain popularity throughout Bordeaux and was often celebrated for its ability to bring softness to Cabernet Sauvignon, the favorite grape of the Bordeaux region. In fact, the pairing was so well-liked that it became the main component of the famous and coveted Bordeaux blend, celebrated today by so many of the world’s wine connoisseur.

The Spread of Merlot
With the increasing popularity of the Bordeaux wine, came the increasing popularity of Merlot. Upon its arrival in California in the mid 19th century, American winemakers began to leave the Cabernet Sauvignon out of the blend, making wines completely consisting of Merlot. The grape was easy to grow and American enjoyed it for its low levels of tannin. From its California beginnings, the grape has also taken root in Washington State and New York,
The alcohol content of Merlot is usually at least 13.5%, but can be closer to 14.5% if grown in California, Chile or Australia, in which the weather is warmer.

Merlot with meat pairing Food Pairings
When it comes to foods that complement Merlot, the options are many. Cabernet- like Merlots are similar to Cabernet Sauvignon in that they both of well with charred and grilled meat. Fruitier Merlots with higher acidity are closer to Pinot Noir and will make a good accompaniment for mushroom-based dishes, salmon, radicchio and chards. The lighter bodied Merlots will pair well with shellfish, such as scallops of prawns, especially when dropped in protein-rich foods like prosciutto or bacon. Strong and blue veined cheeses are poor choices when drinking Merlot, as they tend to overwhelm the wine’s natural fruit flavor, while spicy food can bring out the perception of alcohol and make the Merlot taste more bitter and tannic.

Bottom Line? Real men (and women) drink Merlot! So if you love Merlot, go out and indulge this November 7th and get back to us when you feel somewhat human again and let us know how it went! We love to get your input and comments. (Always drink responsibly!)

Tips For Reducing Skin Inflammation

Women examining her skin

You feel it before you see it.  That familiar burning and stinging feeling. You dread looking in the mirror.  Your reflection confirms your dread.  Your skin is puffy, swollen and covered in red blotches.  This can’t be happening today.  You need to be in work in an hour for a major presentation.  The mere thought of applying any kind of make up to your tender skin  makes you cringe.  Would it be too noticeable if you showed up to work in a ski mask?  Damn that new perfume you bought!  Ok, deep breath, you can handle it.

Believe it or not, inflammation is really a good thing. It’s a sign that your body is protecting itself against bacteria, viruses, and injuries.  However, when the cause of the inflammation is gone, so too should be the inflammation.  Unfortunately, this is sometimes not the case, and chronic inflammation can lead to heart disease, Alzheimers, arthritis and even cancer.

Why Has My Skin Betrayed Me In This Way?
There are a lot of possible explanations for skin inflammation, Stress, lack of sleep, unhealthy pollution, second-hand smoke, and sun exposure are all noted causes.  The “stress hormone”  cortisol can also cause inflammation and so can saturated fats, fried foods, refined sugar, and carbohydrates.  But, no matter the culprit,  the root of inflammation is sensitive skin.

The Four Types of Sensitive Skin
  Dermatologist Leslie Bauman M.D. and director of Cosmetic Medicine and Research says there are four types of sensitive skin:

  • Acne
  • Rosacea
  • Burning and Stinging
  • Contact dermatitis (allergies and irritants)

Though each of these have different symptoms, there is one commonality:  they all cause inflammation.

The Quick Fix

Green Tea

Green tea is a natural anti-inflammatory that brings down redness and puffiness.  It can be applied to your skin in two ways:

  • Boil water and steep 4-6 tea bags for 5 minutes.  Soak a washcloth in tea and rub the cloth on your face.
  • Squeeze water out of teabags and put them directly on your face.
  • You should notice a difference after 5-10 minutes of application.

Oatmeal
Oatmeal has anti-inflammatory and antioxidant compounds which will take the redness out of your skin and soothe itchiness.  It will also fight dryness, reduce pore size, and moisturizes. Here is a good recipe for an oatmeal mask.

  • 2 tablespoons colloidal oatmeal ground into powder by coffee grinder/ food processor
  • 2 tablespoons hot water
  • 1/2 tablespoon honey

Mix ingredients and let sit for 5 minutes.  Apply to the skin as a mask, leave it on for 10 minutes and rinse it with warm water.

For The Long Term

  • Avoid Hot Water and don’t spend too much time in the shower.  It will strip skin of natural moisture. Apply toner and moisturizer immediately after you get out.
  • Avoid Soap Swap them for soap- free cleansers with nourishing ingredients.
  • Avoid fragrances and chemicals These can  be irritating to the skin.  Also, check the amount  skin products your using daily.  If it’s more than 4, consider scaling back.

Now go out there and Enjoy your lovely skin!

Four Ways To Citrus Up Your Diet

Woman  holding a slice of orange

Move over seaweed!  There is a new sheriff in town. Yes, for all of you searching your local health food store for the latest superfood; search no more.  While you were out hunting down the latest brand of maca powder and hemp seeds, the hero of all food was sitting in your own backyard.  Ladies and gentlemen, presenting: the citrus fruit.  The citrus fruit, you say?  Well, that’s been around for years. So, it has, but with all the new products out there, maybe it is not getting the attention it deserves.  So let’s take a moment to sing the praises of the citrus.

Most of us most commonly associate citrus fruits with their high concentration of Vitamin C.  In fact, one medium orange contains 100% the recommended amount of vitamin C in the daily diet.  You may know “C” as a powerful antioxidant, but that is just the beginning of the list of  benefits this tangy wonder can  provide! Citrus fruit ensures that the nerve cells in your  eyes function properly, preventing macular degeneration, linalools,(funny word, huh?) found in lemons ,can reduce stress, satsuma mandarins inhibit tumor growth, flavonoids (found in all citrus fruits)  have been proven to lower the chance of stroke by 19%,  boost good cholesterol, and lower the risk of obesity and diabetes.  In fact, (get this!) 70,000 women were divided into two groups and monitored over twelve years.  One group was given apple juice, the other citrus. Guess who lost more weight.  The citrus ladies lost an average of 3 1/2 lbs. per week, while the apple gals lost only1/2!  That’s because citrus burns fat, and contains enzymes that promote digestion and boost metabolism.  How’s that for pretty great?  Here are some ways you can up the citrus content in your diet.

Squeeze Some Lemon in Your Water
This will help eliminate toxins in your body.  Or squeeze them over salad to add flavor instead of salt.

Vine-Vera-Four-Ways-To-Citrus-Up-Your-Diet-Salad

Put Some Citrus in Your Fruit (or Any) Salad
Toss in some mandarins or tangerines for an Asian tang on Chinese Chicken salad , or just throw in some grapefruit with your berries and apples.  Oh, and a squeeze of lemon on top will also preserve the fruit! It will look so pretty you’ll definitely have to post a picture on Facebook.

Add Some Orange to Your Smoothie!
Citrus fruit juice has the advantage over other fruit by blending well with both red and green smoothies. (It is decidedly neutral!)  Go ahead, cut up a whole orange and blend it right in there for fiber and Vitamin C.

Add Some Lemon or Lime to Your Green Tea
This is a great combo.  Already a powerful antioxidant, green tea with citrus  will actually increase the health benefits by 13X!

Need more reasons to eat citrus? They’re dependable! In season all year around, citrus is great news for people who want to shorten the duration of that nasty winter cold. Also,  they’re one of the most affordable fruit per pound! So let the trendy foods and fads  come and go, experiment or don’t, but remember, when you’re sick and broke, and maybe a few pounds overweight, citrus will always be there for you.

Chia Seeds & Overall Health

Chia seeds

Chia seeds are among some of the healthiest foods available on our planet. They are packed with nutrients and vitamins that can have a great positive effect on our bodies, brains and overall health. One of the main benefits of eating chia seeds is that you can obtain a huge quantity of nutrients in a relatively small amount of calories. Chia seeds are derived the from the plant Salvia Hispanica which grows natively in South America and are a vital food source for the ancient Aztecs and Mayans. However, it is only in recent years that chia seeds have been recognized as a superfood and now they have grown incredibly in popularity and are consumed by millions of health conscious individuals around the world.

Nutritionally Speaking
One single ounce or 28g of chia seeds supplies just 137 calories and only one gram of carbohydrate. This makes them perfect for low-carb diets and also additionally validates them as one of the best sources of nutrients calorie for calorie. One ounce also contains 11g of fiber, 4g of protein and 9g of fat. Additionally, chia seeds contain 30% of the recommended intake of manganese and magnesium and are also high in zinc, vitamin B3 (niacin), potassium, vitamin B1 (thiamine) and B2.

Antioxidants
Chia seeds are also extremely high in antioxidants which fight the production and damage done by free radicals in the body that can harm cells and contribute to the aging process as well as conditions such as cancer.

Weight Loss
Many nutritionists have noted that chia seeds can help with weight loss. The fiber content absorbs large amounts of water, expanding in the stomach thereby increasing satiety and that general fullness feeling after you eat a meal. Although there have been few studies backing chia seeds as an effective way to lose weight, the studies have all shown that there was no increase in weight while participants consumed them.

Omega-3 Fatty Acids
When people think about omega-3 fatty acids, they generally think of oily fish such as salmon. Though you may not know it now, chia seeds contain more omega-3s than salmon gram for gram. Although there are various types of fatty acids, chia seeds will help increase blood levels of EPA and ALA, but not DHA meaning that although it is definitely worthwhile to consume them, you should not forget to eat your fish or take your fish oil supplement.

Reduced Disease Risk
Chia seeds can improve metabolic health on account of their high fiber, protein and omega-3 content. Studies have shown that when chia seeds are incorporated into a healthy diet, they can lower bad LDL cholesterol and triglycerides while reducing inflammation in the body and increasing good HDL cholesterol.

Easy to Incorporate into Your Life
One of the main benefits of chia seeds, not regarding specific nutritional values, is their versatility and ability to be incorporated into any diet extremely easily and efficiently. Although the seeds themselves taste quite bland, they can be added to anything from soups and curries to juices and sports drinks. Additionally, you do not need to grind them like flaxseeds and so are much easier to use and prepare. Other ideas include sprinkling them on top of cereal, yogurt, vegetables and rice dishes.

The Anatomy of the Grape

The humble grape. It may seem like an unassuming fruit, but this berry is an absolute powerhouse of versatility. Grapes are used in the production of wine, for consumption and their components can be incredibly beneficial for your skin when used in topical products. Incredible skincare ingredients that come from grapes include resveratrol and grapeseed oil. To understand grapes and their uses in winemaking and skin care, take a look below at the anatomy of the grape.

Bunch of grapes

Physical Anatomy of the Grape
Grapes are composed of three major parts: the skin, the pulp and the seeds.

  • The Skin – The skin of each grape is anywhere from six to 10 cells thick, and though it is thin, it is an essential part of the grape. The outer surface of the skin is covered with a waxy layer that protects grapes against inclement weather. “A freshly picked grape will be covered in this powder, and it’s easily removed with the tip of your finger. If you see this on your grapes, that’s a good thing – it shows that the fruit hasn’t been processed and is at the peak of its freshness,” writes Mathilde Thomas in her book, The French Beauty Solution. The skin of grapes contains phenolic compounds, potassium and aromatic substances. It is in the seemingly inconsequential area of the grape that resveratrol is the most concentrated.
  • The Pulp – Pulp comprises the majority of each grape and it rests just under the layer of skin on the grape. In the production of white wines, the pulp is responsible for the bulk of the wine’s flavor and acidity. In red wine, the flavor comes first from the skin and then from the pulp. Sugars, water, aromas, potassium and tartaric and malic acids are all found within the pulp of the grape. In addition to these substances, grapes also contain iron, magnesium, copper, citric acid, niacin, fatty substances and calcium. The two primary types of sugar found in grapes are fructose and glucose and ripe grapes contain a relatively equal amount of each of these carbohydrates.
  • The Seeds – Closest to the inside of the grape are the seeds, which contain high amounts of tannins. For winemakers, the seeds must be treated quite carefully because if they are crushed during pressing, the tannins in the wine will be overdone. If this occurs, the wine will need a significantly longer time in the bottle before it is palatable. When it comes to grapes being used for skin care, the seeds are perhaps the most beneficial portion of the grape due to their high polyphenol content.

Grapes are truly an incredible fruit, and they seem to be perfectly made for the production of wine. Any other fruit would require additional sugar or other ingredients to even produce alcohol, but the grape is inherently suited to this task. Additionally, compounds within the skin, pulp and seeds of the grape can have significant positive benefits for your skin and body. The next time you eat a grape, take the time to truly savor the experience and notice all of the various parts that combine in this delectable berry.

Best Ingredients for More Youthful Skin

The ingredients you put onto your skin have a significant and direct impact on your appearance. If you’ve been looking in the mirror and seeing skin that appears dull, rough, dry or lackluster, it’s time to add some serious anti-aging ingredients into your skin care routine. However, there are so many products with even more ingredients and it can be a little daunting to know what ingredients really are the best when it comes to achieving more youthful looking skin. Read below to find out the top five best ingredients for more youthful skin and why they are the best.

Woman holding a vitamin capsule

Retinol
Retinol is the purest form of vitamin A and it is one of the most beneficial ingredients to keep your skin looking young. Retinol is a cell-communicating ingredient that essentially tells your skin cells to look and act younger. It stimulates collagen production, activates cellular metabolism for more rapid cell turnover, fades the appearance of sun or age spots and reduces fine lines. By communicating with your cells to perform all of these tasks, retinol gives your face a firmer, younger and more even appearance.

Green tea

Antioxidants
Free radical damage is one of the most significant causes of aging and unfortunately, there are types of free radical exposure that you can’t avoid such as the sun, oxygen or pollution. What you can do is to look for skin care products that contain an array of antioxidants to fight free radical damage. Look for ingredients like vitamin C, green tea extract and vitamin E. Vitamin C is a favorite among dermatologists because this antioxidant boosts your skin’s natural defenses against sun damage and also encourages collagen production.

Hyaluronic acid.

Hyaluronic Acid
Hydrated skin is an important part of a youthful appearance, and hyaluronic acid is one of the greatest skin care ingredients for adding moisture to your skin. Hyaluronic acid is a humectant, which means that it is able to draw moisture from the air and hold that moisture into your skin, and hyaluronic acid is so powerful that it can hold up to 1,000 times its weight in water. Hyaluronic acid makes your fine lines and wrinkles become significantly less noticeable because as it holds water, it plumps the appearance of your skin.

Grapes in a vineyard

Resveratrol
Resveratrol is found in the skins of grapes, blueberries, cranberries and Goji berries and also in wine and some nuts. High-quality skin care products also harness the power of resveratrol to fight signs of aging. Resveratrol features a number of potent antioxidant properties and helps keep your skin looking young. It also helps protect against further environmental damage by fighting off free radicals.

Milk

Alpha-Hydroxy Acids (AHAs)
Exfoliation is a crucial step in maintaining youthful-looking skin and alpha-hydroxy acids are incredible for this purpose. Alpha-hydroxy acids are generally derived from fruit or milk sugars. Some common alpha-hydroxy acids are lactic acid and glycolic acid. These acids exfoliate your skin by gently dissolving the bonds that hold dead skin cells together. This allows for the dead skin cells to be sloughed away from the skin to reveal smoother, more even skin and can also help reduce the appearance of pores.

Not all skin care ingredients are created equal. Some, like the five above, are seriously powerful anti-aging ingredients that provide your skin with a more luminous and youthful appearance. When selecting skin care products, always check the ingredient list to see how high on the list these anti-aging superstars are. The closer to the beginning of the list, the higher the concentration of each ingredient in the product. Choosing well-formulate, quality skin care products that contain these five best ingredients for more youthful skin will keep your face looking young and radiant.

Top Ingredients for Dry Skin

Not too many people are blessed with what the skincare and beauty industry deem “normal skin.” In fact, many of us struggle with pinpointing exactly what type of skin we have whether it is dry, oily, combination or some other amalgam of the three. We have different skin types for a large variety of reasons with some of the most common factors being the water level in the skin, oil production and how sensitive skin is to products. Dry skin is often characterized by:

  • Minuscule, almost invisible, pores
  • Dull skin
  • Tight feeling (low elasticity)
  • Rough patches (may be red at times)
  • Increased number of fine lines and wrinkles

If this sounds like you, don’t worry; we have you covered. To keep your skin looking, and feeling, its best, we’ve rounded up three of the top ingredients to look for to soothe and hydrate your dry skin.

Woman making pineapple juice.

Glycolic Acid
This one may seem totally out of place because it includes the word acid (yikes!) and it is often used in chemical peels or liquids to exfoliate the skin. Because dry skin tends to get rough or flaky, you need to be vigilant about removing dead skin cells and old skin. Glycolic acid is a very gentle exfoliant, and depending upon the concentration in the formula, may be something you are able to use daily. Glycolic acid goes further than merely eliminating dead skin cells, it also helps your skin to attract moisture throughout the day, keeping it more hydrated.

Hyaluronic Acid
The most popular ingredients in skin care products change all of the time. One minute, you need to be using aloe vera and the next minute it’s something else. Hyaluronic acid is an ingredient that has had a lot of hype surrounding it recently, but that is because it lives up to the excitement. A common problem with dry skin is not just that the skin is lacking moisture, but that the skin’s barrier response is weakened meaning your skin cannot heal and protect itself. Hyaluronic acid not only provides your skin with moisture, but it increases the ability of your skin to properly protect itself. Additionally, hyaluronic acid is an amazing ingredient that retains moisture, which is super beneficial to those with dry skin because it adds moisture to the skin, and holds it there for long periods of time. A bonus to using hyaluronic acid is that it plumps up the skin, significantly decreasing the appearance of fine lines.

Woman holding orange

Antioxidants
Antioxidants are either natural or synthetic ingredients that protect against and prevent free radical damage. Dry skin is the result of your skin’s outer layers losing their ability to retain moisture; a decreased barrier response. Antioxidants are able to help repair damage to the skin’s outer layers while also reducing inflammation and irritation. There are numerous antioxidants, and using just one or two probably isn’t going to fix your problems. What you want to look for is a product that contains a potent blend of antioxidants, like Vine Vera skin care, because ingredients like vitamin A, C and E work best when combined with other antioxidants such as green tea or resveratrol. In addition to looking for a great blend of antioxidants, pay attention to the packaging. Most antioxidants are not stable elements, meaning that they break down and lose effectiveness when exposed to light or air. Look for quality packaging that is opaque and that is airt tight.

The most normal response to dry skin is to simply slap some serious moisturizer on your face and be on your way. If only treating your skin was that easy. Instead of just covering the problem, take the time to find and invest in products that contain the above ingredients. These ingredients are not just a quick-fix, though they do work fast; they are the ingredients that will help your skin’s barrier response heal and strengthen, leading to more hydrated and beautiful skin.