There is the age-old quest to find the Fountain of Youth. People scramble around to try to find the best product or the best foods to keep them looking youthful. Yet how many actually understand what exactly is causing the aging process? There is photoaging which is caused by ultraviolet (UV) rays but then there is also the intrinsic, inevitable process of getting older. The human body is made up of complex cells, and as those cells degrade, so does a person’s youth. While certain products and/or foods may help slow down the aging process the real journey to the Fountain of Youth can be found from within our cells.
Our cells are home to important molecules called deoxyribonucleic acid (DNA) which can self-replicate and create new cells with the use of telomeres. A telomere is the segment of DNA that occurs at the ends of chromosomes and keeps everything in order. Should telomeres not be there, genetic coding could become jumbled ultimately leading to the destruction of the genetic information. Learn Genetics explain that, “each time a cell divides, the telomeres get shorter. When they get too short, the cell can no longer divide; it becomes inactive… or it dies. This shortening process is associated with aging…” The skin for example is kept young due to constant cellular renewal. When the replication process begins to slow, the skin loses its youthfulness and elasticity as less cells are being generated.
One can start with a few small changes in their day to day habits to keep their DNA young and their telomeres long. Scientists at UCSF and the Preventative Medicine Research Institute conducted a study where a group of people changed their lifestyle habits. The group incorporated, “…a plant-based diet (high in fruits, vegetables and unrefined grains, and low in fat and refined carbohydrates); moderate exercise (walking 30 minutes a day, six days a week); stress reduction (gentle yoga-based stretching, breathing, meditation). This same group experienced a ‘significant’ increase in telomere length of approximately 10 percent.”
Oxidative stress is another factor that contributes to aging, and one can help prevent or lessen its effects with the use of antioxidants. Antioxidants (used both topically or ingested) can help fight the destruction of the cell by fighting the free radicals that are produced by oxidative stress. In a previous article, we had listed off a few antioxidants and their benefits when used topically. Manuka honey is known for its antibacterial and anti-inflammatory properties as well as green tea extracts which have been known to reduce and prevent sun damage. Keeping the inside of the body maintained is just as important as the external upkeep.
New research is showing plant stem cells may be used as a preventative aging method as stem cells are the beginning of other cells. The International Society for Stem Cell Research explained that, “stem cells are defined by two characteristics: They can make copies of themselves, or self-renew and they can differentiate, or develop, into more specialized cells.” With the power that plant stem cells hold, they may be able to jump start the cellular renewal process. “Plant stem cell extracts are highly sustainable… only a very small amount of plant material is needed to produce high-quality, powerfully active, plant stem cell ingredients.” The idea is that by using these regenerative cells from plants in beauty products, it can act as a catalyst for the human cells to repair themselves. Here, at Lea Advanced Skincare, we carry products containing these plant stem cells.
We will all grow old eventually. Fortunately, through modern technology and research, there are methods to help prevent and/or reverse the signs of aging. Through proper diet and antioxidants, the “youth” inside of DNA can be preserved which in turn, helps us stay younger longer.
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