Tag Archives: Skin Ingredient

Transform Dull Pasty Skin

If you’re looking a little more zombie-like than you would prefer, here are some ways you can transform your dull and pasty skin into something a bit more life affirming.

Smiling woman 1. Exfoliate
When you exfoliate, your skin reflects more light. If you’re younger than 20, your skin cells rejuvenate ever 28 days, but by the time you hit for 20’s, turnover slows to between 30 and 40 days. According to Jeannette Graf, assistant clinical professor of dermatology at the Mount Sinai School of Medicine, “Dead skin cells pile up, diffusing the light and making skin dull. ” Exfoliate at night rather than in the morning for best results and to remove all the dirt and grime buildup from the day.

2. Use a Highlighter
Makeup artist Mally Roncal says a champagne highlighter, “looks good on anyone.” For normal to dry skin, Roncal advises using your fingers for application. “Tap up and down your cheekbones and dab whatever’s leftover on your brow bones, the center of your chin, and the tip of your nose.” If your complexion is on the oily side, you may want to dust some powder formula over those areas with a fluffy brush.

3. Allover Body Glow
To get an all over body radiance, try botanical oils instead of lotion. The lipids found in botanical oils are the same ones that are in your skin’s natural moisture barrier. Cosmetic chemist Ni’Kita Wilson recommends coconut oil. “It’s rich in fatty acids, so it gets absorbed really quickly and leaves behind a glow instead of a shine-it looks more like your skin is lit up than lotioned up.”
Roncal weighs in on the importance of an full body shine, saying, “if your face is radiant and your body is ashy, it can look jarring. Your glow will be much more believable if you highlight your body too. However, when it comes to your body, a tinted highlighter is preferable to an untinted, which is easier to blend, while still providing a healthy glow.

Woman exfoliating skin
4. Optimal Skin Care Tips
In addition to exfoliation, there are certain ingredients you should look for to give your skin that extra brilliance.

Ceramides
Although your skin has natural enzymes to slough off dead skin cells, they don’t work as well when your skin is dry. Moisturizers with ceramides can reinforce the natural barrier of your skin and help it to rejuvenate.

Retinoids
Frederic Brandt, dermatologist says, “Your skin reflects light even better when its firm.” He suggests an over the counter or prescription strength retinoid to boost production of collagen.

Vitamin C
Use this antioxidant to brighten skin and help fade dulling sun spots.

Best Exfoliators for Your Skin

For Fair, Dry, and Sensitive Skin
If your skin comes under one of these categories, you should probably go easy on the exfoliation. Your skin type is the type most likely to become irritated and prone to dryness and age spots. Dr. Brandt recommends a lactic peel once a week. Lactic acid is made of fairly large molecules, which doesn’t penetrate as deeply as harsher acids.

For Oily and Combination Skin
If you’ve got combination or oily skin, you require deeper exfoliation than other skin types. Brandt says a cleanser with salicylic acid used daily and a scrub with microbeads used once a weel are the ways to go. “The scrub sweeps aways dead cells so the salicylic acid can clean clogged pores,” he says.

For Normal Skin
Brandt says you should use a glycolic acid peel one a week if you’ve got normal skin. Says he, “it’s one of the most effective exfoliators because it penetrates deeply.”

What do you do when your glow is low? We want to know!

Create A Healthy Glow With Gentle Exfoliation

You’re exfoliating for the first time. The devil inside you says, “Wow, this is great. It looks like I took off about ten years in two minutes. I should do this every day. At this rate, I will look 18 by the end of the week.”

The angel says,”No way, this exfoliation rough stuff. You’re going to scrub your face off.”
Devil: I heard Beyonce’s makeup artist says Queen B exfoliates every day and look at her.”
Angel: You’re no Beyonce. You’re going to scrub your face off.

Exfoliation can be very gratifying, but as with all other things, there can be too much of a good thing and the key is finding that happy medium. You want to make a difference, but if you go too far, your cells will stop regenerating and the effects won’t be as gratifying. Here are some tips for gentle exfoliation for a healthy glow.

Woman exfoliating skin
Rules of Exfoliation

Give Priority to Rough Skin Patches
If you begin to see rough patches, you should follow the advice of Ole Henriksen, the founder of the eponymous skincare brand. Go outside in the daylight with clean skin and bring a mirror. This will help you to understand what is going on and the areas where you might need help. I believe that everyone should be their own skincare expert, and this is an essential step for getting to know your skin. ” Exfoliate concentrating on places in which your skin is dull, uneven, or flaky.

Exfoliate in An Upward Circular Motion
Henriksen says, “I think the biggest mistake people make is being heavy- handed. A little goes a long way- let the exfoliating particles do their job. You just want to facilitate the glide access the face, that way your skin feels great and you don’t over treat it.” Henriksen suggests limited exfoliation to twice weekly, and, if you have frail capillaries, it may be a good idea to apply a face oil before you scrub, for extra protection. Vermen Verallo-Rowell, MD, dermatologist and founder of VMV Hypoallergenics recommends virgin coconut oil, which is inexpensive and safe for all types of skin. If you continue to notice redness and sensitivity, you may want to cut down exfoliation to once a week.

If you are looking for a scrub that won’t harm your face with harsh beads, Henriksen recommends mild jojoba beads, adding that, “you want to be sure …that the beads are perfectly round spheres.”

Exfoliating brushes may be a good tool for some, but you should keep a close watch on your skin’s reaction to this treatment and limit use if irritation occurs.

Follow with A Hydrating Moisturizer
To make sure your skin retains moisture, you follow up your exfoliating routine with a good thick moisturizer. Wash your face with warm water and pat it dry with a towel. Apply a cream or anti -aging serum before hitting the hay. Your morning you will thank you.

Exfoliation techniques
Exfoliate At Night
Night is the time when your skin is most receptive to treatments, especially when it comes to speeding cell turnover. This is the best time for the application of topical treatments with retinol and vitamin C.

If You Overexfoliate
If you overdo it, not to worry, just give your skin a break for about a week, Use a cleanser with Vitamin C or green tea that is free of drying agents. You can tone down redness with an over-the-counter cortisone cream.

What rules for exfoliation do you follow? How do put the “X” in exfoliation? Let us know!

Best Ingredients For Face Masks

It has been said, ” Behind every mask, there is a face, and behind that a story.” What story is your face telling? Is it the story of dryness, or of oiliness, or is it is a combination of both. Do you want to change that story? It all revolves around finding the right mask. When it comes to choosing the right mask for your skin type, it’s all about the ingredients. You need to know what is in your mask and what that means for you. Here are some of the best ingredients to look for in a mask and what they do.

Honey
Honey
Not for nothing did Cleopatra spend her days applying this golden delight to her skin. Honey has loads of antioxidants to fight damage caused by free radicals that lead to skin cancer and aging. It also has antiseptic properties to fight acne. Oily or dry, your good to go!

Oats
What better to go with honey than oats? It is with good reason that oats are a commonly found ingredient in all skin products. They cleanse pores to unclog dirt and bacteria making for great exfoliation, and also can be soothing to skin affected by sunburn or other inflammatory conditions.

Aloe Vera
There’s very little this miracle plant can’t do. It is a great ingredient to look for in facial masks because of its ability to soothe sunburn and combat effects of aging. In addition, aloe vera is a known moisturizer and acne reducer.

Avocados Avocado
Great for you inside and on the surface, avocado is loaded with healthy fats to hydrate skin. It offers the antioxidant power of vitamin C needed for the creation of elastin and collagen for structure and firmness and carotenoids to improve skin’s density and tone.

Mint
The antiseptic properties of mint are what makes it so beneficial in face masks. It unclogs pores to leave skin cleansed and tingling and is also effective in preventing breakouts.

Vitamin E
Vitamin E plays a vital role in the production of healthy collagen and elastin in the skin, preventing sagging and wrinkling, Additionally, it offers skin protection against free radical damage caused by the oxidation of fats in skin cells which causes skin to age.

Clay or Mud
Clay and mud are known for their ability to pull impurities from skin, which is great for all skin types. It can also be an effective way of reducing breakout and adding moisture.

We hope that the story of your face is a happy one. We’d love to hear all about your favorite facial ingredients and why you love them!

Your Four Part Beauty Regimen

The ears of the skin care obsessed will most definitely perk up when they hear of a new beauty product comes from the East. To many, the word “eastern” is enough to validate any snail bee oil cleanser or mineral infused canola honey serum on the market, hence the preoccupation with ten-step Korean skin care regimen. Those of us seeking the ancient secrets of the east will shudder at the thought of anything less than the double cleanse of the ten-step, or going to sleep sans ceramide gel.

Yet, there is something to be said for simplicity and not all of us have the time, space, and correct variety of applicators to devote to ten different products. For those of you who consider getting out of the house in a timely fashion while staying beautiful among your priorities, we bring you the four step beauty regimen.

Woman cleansing face

1. Cleanse
Cleansing is a key component and the most basic part of any skin care routine. Cleansing should be done twice daily, in the morning and the evening to wash away debris left by makeup and other impurities that form on your skin during the day and while you sleep. Dampen skin with warm water and apply cleanser to your cleansing brush or fingertips. Rub it gently into your neck and face in a circular motion until a thick lather begins to form. Rinse with warm water and pat dry.

2. Tone
This step will help to keep your skin’s pH level regulated and will open pores, helping your skin prepare to receive treatment. Toning should follow cleansing in both the a.m. and p.m. Just splash some toner on your palm or on a cotton pad and massage over your face and neck to bring out that inner radiance.

Woman treating skin
3. Treatment
Treatment generally refers to toners, serums and exfoliants and application instructions differ with formats. As with cleansing and toning, skin treatment should be done day and night. although you will want to be careful about overusing exfoliants. In general, treatment products should be applied evenly using upward strokes. Look for treatment products with Vitamins A, C and E and hyaluronic acid for anti-aging results.

4. Moisturizer
Moisturizer is vital for the hydration and vitalization of the complexion. Eye cream should be applied in a tapping motion using the ring finger, beginning at the inner eye and moving to the outer area and gradually forming a circle around the eye.

For the rest of the face, chose a moisturizer with SPF or add an SPF to protect skin from UV rays. Use a pea sized drop of lotion and cream and spread in to your cheeks, chin and throat in a circular motion moving upward and outward. Go for something lightweight that your skin can easily absorb. If you are applying SPF separately, layer it over your moisturizer during the day, giving the moisturizer adequate time to set.

And remember, if you still want to to go ten step, feel free! Just let us know how it goes. Tell us all about your beauty routine. We love to hear it.

Signs That You’re Using the Wrong Product

We all want the lotion, cream, or serum to be the one that leaves your skin rejuvenated, wrinkle- free and beautiful, but sometimes, you just need to walk away. Here are some signs that the skin product you’re using may not be the right one for you.

Woman looking at skin rash

You’ve Got Rashes
While rashes can be caused by a variety of things, they can sold be symptoms of an allergic reaction to a cosmetic product. Beauty formulas can contain inactive ingredients that can contribute to the look and smell of the product, but these ingredients can be allergenic and cause irritating skin rashes. Dermatologist Tsippora Shainhouse says, “Consider getting allergy patch testing at your dermatologist office to determine the offending agent and them you’ll know which ingredients to look out for in the future.”

You’ve Got Hives
If you’ve been noticing red welts popping up on you’re skin, it may be hives, Hives are another sign that you may be having a negative reaction to your beauty products. Certified aesthetician Heather Wilson, explains, “People can be allergic to ingredients in a skin care product, so hives can definitely occur. Unfortunately, this doesn’t means the product wrong for your skin type or concern, but that the reaction is a sign that you should discontinue the product, most likely due to an allergen.”

Woman applying skin product to face

Your Skin Is Oily
If you’re not prone to oily skin, but begin to notice increased excess moisture on your skin, it may be the effect of the product you are using. Harsh cleansers can strip the natural oils from the skin, causing it to go into a repair mode, producing oil to make up for the damage. Wilson recommends decreasing the amount of oil absorbing skin care products within your routine and looking for, “serums and gel cream moisturizers that are infused with hyaluronic acid, which provides hydration without adding oil.”

Your Skin Is Dry and Peeling
Peels and face washes can contain strong acids that are harsh on the skin. New York dermatologist Debra Jaliman, MD. says, “If your skin is peeling too much, you’re probably using too many acids. Don’t combine alpha-hydroxy acids with salicylic acids and retinol. One acid may be enough.”

You Notice Brown Spots
Brown spots are usually the result of long term sun exposure. If you are using a sunscreen product, but are still noticing brown spots, it may be time to look for a new sunscreen. Dr. Jaliman says, “If you’re getting brown spots on your face and uneven pigment, maybe your sunscreen isn’t giving you broad-spectrum protection, Choose SPF 30 or above with zinc oxide or titanium dioxide.”

Your Face Burns
Although some products may cause a tingling sensation, they should not cause a painful burning. Some products can be too strong for sensitive skin. Dr Jaliman cites certain anti aging products which contain strong retinoids with ingredients that can cause a stinging sensation. “If your skin is burning on application of a retinol,” says the doctor, “talk to your dermatologist about changing to a gentler anti aging ingredient like vitamin C or resveratrol.”

Finding the right skin care may be just as challenging as finding someone who is single and good looking. We hope you have found the right one for you. We want to hear all about it. Please write with your experiences and concerns whether they be romantic or cosmetic.

Helping Your Skin Deal With Gravity and Free Radicals

In the book, Nature Stories, by Balachandher Krishan Guru, it reads, “Gravity is the force that attracts everything towards the center of the earth. Who or what is the cause of this force of gravity?…The best answer I can come up with is Mother Nature….Similarly, the sun shines on everyone regardless of any form of discrimination. By the way, what is the sun? It is just another part of Mother Nature.”

Ok, Guru, so it may be true that gravity and the sun are two great gifts, but, appealing to Mother Nature as a woman, why did she have to provide us with the two biggest natural components of premature aging?

Woman looking at skin
Effects of Aging on Skin
The aging of skin depends on various factor including diet, lifestyle, personal habits, and heredity. Smoking is an example of a personal habit that can produce free radicals that damage cells and cause wrinkles. Other things that cause aging? Stress, facial movement, obesity, sleep position and, of course, gravity.

Changes Occurring with age
As the skin ages, it is common to experience roughening of skin, development of lesions and benign tumors, slackening of skin and the loss of elastin tissue, increased skin transparency caused by the thinning of the epidermis, increased fragility caused by the flattening of the part of the skin where the dermis and epidermis meet, and, lastly, tendency to bruise more easily.

Changes may also occur beneath the skin. There may be a loss of fat beneath the skin in the temples, nose and eye area resulting in a sunken eyed, skeletal appearance. Bone loss, usually occurring after the age of 60, may become apparent around the chin and mouth causing the skin to pucker around the mouth. Loss of cartilage in the nose may cause the nasal tip to drip and enhance the nose’s bony structure.

Woman in the sun
Sun and Skin
Ultraviolet (UV) light from the sun damages the skin’s elastin, causing skin to stretch, sag, and lose its resilience. It also bruises and loses its ability to heal quickly. Sun exposure early in life may lead to damage later in life. The best ways to protect yourself from skin cancer and sun exposure are by covering up, wearing a hat, applying sunscreen, and staying out of the sun in general.

Other Changes
Secondary factors contributing to changes in skin are facial movement, gravity, and sleep. As skin elasticity decreases, gravity leads to drooping of the eyelids and eyebrows and the looseness go the skin under the jaw, chin, and earlobes. Facial movement causes lines to become more visible and may appear vertically over the root of the nose, horizontally on the forehead or as curved lines on the upper cheeks, temples and around the mouth.

The position in which you sleep may also influence the way your skin ages. Sleep creases are most commonly found not the side of the forehead, above the eyebrows to the hairline and on the middle of the cheeks. Sleeping on your back may be one way to prevent them, or stop them from becoming worse.

Bottom line: gravity and free radicals are bad news for your skin! Stay away from cigarettes, protect yourself from the sun, eat well and sleep on your back! Let us know how you resist gravity! We love to hear from you!

Aloe Vera Cure All

Aloe Vera
Aloe vera. It’s in most of our medicine cabinets and used in our favorite skincare products. But did you know that in Chinese medicine it is recommended in the treatment of fungal diseases and has widespread use in the cosmetic, pharmaceutical and food industries? In fact, the manufacturing of aloe vera extracts is one of the largest botanical industries in the world. Find out what it can do for you.

Soothes Rashes and Skin Irritations
Sure, when we have a rash or sunburn, aloe vera may be the first thing we reach for. But did you know that numerous reports have explored the role of topical aloe vera and its effectiveness in treatment of psoriasis, surgical wounds and burn remedies yielding astonishing results?

A 1996 study done at the Department of Clinical Physiology in Sweden tested 60 patients with chronic psoriasis and found results when part of the group used aloe vera vs. others who used a placebo. Those who used aloe vera came up with a cure rate of 83% with no relapses reported in a 12 month follow-up. Also, a systematic review of 40 studies was performed in 2009 showing that the oral administration of aloe vera in mice can heal wounds, decrease the number and size of papillomas (small growths on skin) and reduce the incidence of tumors by more than 90% in the liver, spleen and bone marrow. The studies also show that aloe vera effectively treats genital herpes, cold sores, dermatitis, frostbite, burns and can be safely used as an antifungal and antimicrobial agent.

Aloe Vera
Moisturizes Hair and Scalp

Aloe vera is also a great hair and scalp moisturizer. It’s nourishing properties and tons of vitamins and minerals will keep hair strong and healthy. It’s antibacterial and antifungal properties help with dandruff and the gel’s enzymes can rid the scalp of dead cells and promote regeneration of skin tissues around the hair follicles. Unlike many shampoos and conditioners, aloe vera is free of chemicals that can damage hair and cause skin irritations.

Treats Constipation
Aloe latex is a fluid derived from the inner lining of the leaves of the aloe vera plant. This juice has a natural fiber that aids digestion and improves bowel movements. Experts recommend drinking two ounces of aloe vera juice daily when constipated.

Boosts Immune System
The enzymes present in aloe vera break down what we eat into amino acids which turn the enzymes into fuel for every cell in the body, allowing the cells to function properly. Bradykinase, an anti-inflammatory mediator found in aloe vera, stimulates the immune system and kills infections. Since zinc is an important component in aloe vera, it could also help those with a zinc deficiency. Other vitamins present in aloe vera include Vitamin C which protects the body from cardiovascular disease, prenatal health problems, eye disease and skin wrinkling; and Vitamin E which reduces free radical damage, fights inflammation and helps naturally slow the aging process.

The Truth about Mineral Oil

Woman looking into a microscope

There’s been much debate about whether or not the colorless, odorless mineral oil is actually good for skin, and the answer seems to vary depending on who you ask. However, there are quite a few fans out there, and with good reason. For a long time, mineral oil has been used as part of many a beauty regimen and using it has numerous benefits including helping to make the skin feel softer. Here are some truths that you should know about mineral oil so you can make a choice about whether or not you feel it’s the right product for you.

Highly Refined
Mineral oil is made from petroleum, specifically, it’s a product result of distilling of petroleum. It is one main reasons why some are turned off even before using it. Even the association is enough to have them choose something else. However, mineral oils that are used in beauty products are purified and highly refined, which leads to…

Mineral Oil and Cancer
The extensive purification process that mineral oil goes through allows it to be completely safe for use in beauty products. According to the Report on Carcinogens, Thirteenth Edition on the National Toxicology Program site of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, mineral oils that are untreated and mildly treated are “known to be human carcinogens.” There are different grades of mineral oil, and while some are untreated or mildly treated, those in beauty products are, as previously stated, purified and highly refined. According to the World Health Organization International Agency for Research on Cancer on their List of Classifications, Volumes 1 – 115 page, “Mineral oils, untreated or mildly treated” are labeled as Group 1 while “Mineral oils, highly-refined” are labeled as Group 3. According to their classification system, Group 1 is described as “Carcinogenic to humans” while Group 3 is described as “Not classifiable as to its carcinogenicity to humans.”

Mineral Oil and Acne
Another one of the biggest debates regarding mineral oil is that it blocks pores and could cause acne. One of the best ways to tell about the chances of that happening is to look at its comedogenic rating. The system ranges from 0 which means that the oil won’t clog pores to a 5 which means that there’s a very high chance of the oil clogging your pores. When it comes to the comedogenic rating of mineral oil, it has a score of 0. So you really don’t have to worry about acne and breakouts while using skincare products which use mineral oil.

The Feel of Mineral Oil
Mineral oil can feel greasy (some will be put off by the feel more than others), so if you have oily skin, it may not feel particularly comfortable to use, but on other skin types, it shouldn’t feel off-putting. To see how it might feel on your skin, do a patch test instead of immediately slathering it all over your skin. It can also give you a good idea about whether the mineral oil and your skin are compatible.

There are several myths out there about mineral oil, but the truth is that many people who use it won’t experience problems, and instead, can reap the benefits of using it. If you’re thinking of using mineral oil on your skin, it is best to consult your dermatologist first. This is an especially important step if you have skin sensitivities or you’re taking medication. You want to make sure you don’t do anything that could cause your skin to get irritated, so a quick and simple conversation with your dermatologist work wonders and also let you reap the benefits of mineral oil.

Aloe Vera Leaf Juice

Aloe vera

You’ve probably heard of the Aloe Vera plant as a pain reliever and healing salve for burns and sunburns, and, to be sure, it certainly excels in that regard, but it may have numerous other applications as well. Of course, the usual skepticism when discussing alternative medicine and folk remedies is advised, but aloe vera’s potential is at the very least worth investigation and objective assessment. Let’s take a look.

What’s Aloe Vera?
Aloe vera is a species of succulent plant in the aloe genus with long, thick, dull green, spike-edged leaves all growing out of the center of the plant. When one of the leaves is cut open, a thick, sticky gel is revealed inside the plant. This gel is what’s of interest for potential health, medicinal, and skincare applications.

Burn Relief
One purported use for Aloe Vera is pain relief, especially for burns (including sunburns) but also for rashes, minor irritations, cuts, and other wounds, and etc.

This one actually holds a lot of water. There is ample evidence for aloe being effective on sunburns and other burns. It not only reduces pain, but causes the burn to heal faster than it would on its own. There’s also suggestive research and ample anecdotal evidence to suggest that aloe probably helps soothe and heal a variety of rashes and skin irritations. There is insufficient evidence supporting Aloe working well for wound healing of any kind, however, and what evidence does exist is conflicting.

Topical Skincare
It is also suggested that Aloe Vera can be used in or in addition to skincare products for purposes such as acne control, soothing sensitive skin and preventing flare-ups, and helping to nourish and moisturize skin.

While not conclusive as of yet, research does suggest that Aloe Vera is helpful at reducing acne, and it is less harsh than a lot of other acne treatments, like salicylic acid, which has a tendency to dry out the skin. However, aloe alone is not a sufficient acne treatment on its own, as research suggests that applying aloe gel in the morning and evening improves acne by about 35%. If you want that to be 100%, you should pair it with a prescription acne medication.

As for softening skin, there isn’t enough evidence to make a clear conclusion. It’s a “maybe, maybe not” kind of thing. Some studies were done, but the results are inconclusive, and it seems that aloe may increase water content in the very outermost layers, but not inner layers, meaning it doesn’t really fix the problem, so you’re better off with other skin softening ingredients.

Studies show promise for aloe treating psoriasis symptoms. A 0.5% aloe extract cream reduced skin plaques after about four weeks in clinical trials. It is more effective than corticosteroid creams commonly used for decreasing severity, however, it does not decrease other symptoms, so using prescription creams along with aloe is your best bet.

Ingestion
A lot of too-good-to-be-true claims for drinking beverages with aloe gel in them or taking aloe capsules have been made; everything from aloe juice as a depression cure to helping fight cancer to lowering cholesterol.

We’ll save you a lot of time on this one; almost none of these claims, or any other positive claims about aloe beverages, have any decent amount of supportive evidence. The singular exception is that aloe can be an effective treatment for constipation, but there are much better prescription and over-the-counter options for stool softeners or laxatives.

Laminaria Japonica

Brown seaweed salad

Laminaria Japonica is a type of brown seaweed rich in a vast host of nutrients, minerals and with some truly amazing health benefits. The medicinal powers of seaweed have actually been used for centuries because of their known ability to extend life and even enhance health and beauty. Decades of research has shown that it is actually Laminaria Japonica, or brown seaweed, which is the most beneficial of all seaweed. Laminaria Japonica is high in organic iodine, alginates, fucoxanthin, laminarin, and fucoidan. It also possesses over 70 different minerals which many nutritionists have said are lacking in diets throughout the Western hemisphere.

Extracts from brown seaweed have astounded researchers as have not only they been able to cause cancer tumors to die, they also detoxify the body of chemical build up and even burn body fat.

Fucoidan and Cancer
Fucoidan is a sulfated polysaccharide, also known as an ‘evaporated oligomineral’. Approximately 4% of the total dry weight of brown seaweed is composed of fucoidan which is the chemical responsible for the apoptosis (or death) of cancer cells. To date, there have been well over 600 studies that show that fucoidan is also responsible for a vast host of other positive benefits. These include: immune system improvement, intestinal disorders, allergy control, improved liver function, cholesterol regulation, blood pressure regulation, blood sugar regulation and its powerful anti-oxidant action promotes healthy hair and skin. The regular consumption of brown seaweed in many parts of Asia is often correlated with the significantly lower rates of breast cancer and other hormone-related cancers amongst Asian women.

Fucoxanthin and Weight Loss
The fat burning properties of Laminaria Japonica are accredited to a compound called fucoxanthin. Alongside the iodine content of brown seaweed, when ingested, the compounds increase our body’s metabolic rate meaning you burn your more calories and you burn them faster. This prevents the accumulation of body fat. One study published in the journal ‘Diabetes, Obesity and Metabolism’ involved 16 weeks of supplementation with a product containing fucoxanthin and pomegranate seed oil. The results saw that participants lost an average of 7.7 pounds over the period and additionally fat deposits in the liver decreased.

Alginates and Detoxification
Aliginic acid, also known as algin or alginate is an anionic polysaccharide that is found in the cell walls of brown algae. The alginate content of brown seaweed is known to detoxify the body of numerous unwanted and sometimes harmful chemicals such as strontium, uranium, mercury and lead. In day to day life, we are exposed to hundreds of toxins which over time can become embedded in our vital organs such as the heart, liver, or brain. The alginate content of Laminaria Japonica effectively eliminates these compounds from or bodies, helping us to stay disease free.

Supplementation
Although supplementing with brown seaweed or consuming it regularly is no doubt a great health choice to make, researchers have actually found that healthy participants who consumed 4 kelp capsules each day for a period of four weeks showed increased levels of thyroid stimulating hormones. Although we know that kelp is not the same as Laminaria Japonica – the compounds found within the two are very similar. In this way when consuming brown seaweed, remember to consume it regularly but always in moderation.