What is Collagen and Elastin?
If you've been doing your anti aging homework, you have probably heard about Collagen and Elastin. These two are what gives our skin it's young, dewy, resilient and tight properties.
You know how kids have the best skin, right? It's tight and bounces back when you pinch their cheeks.
That is because they are basically little Collagen and Elastin factories. As we age our skin loses that production and now it droops, sags, forms wrinkles and is more like putty, it kind of stays where it is when you pinch it and doesn't “bounce back”.
So let's talk about what exactly Collagen and Elastin is and how do we get more of this wonderful things into our skins.
What is Collagen?
Collagen is a very plentiful protein in our body. It makes up bones, skin, muscles and tendons. It's job is to basically connect and support all our tissue. It's the glue that keeps us together.
The unfortunate thing is our collagen production peaks at a very young age, when we are just 18 to maybe 21 years old. And then it's a slow decline from there, forever.
What is Elastin?
Elastin is another protein made from amino acids that helps our bodies stick together. It allows our skin to stretch and move and then “snap back”.
The Sun can damage these connective tissues so often sun damaged skin leads to sagging and dropping skin over time.
How to Boost Collagen and Elastin?
Let's look at the top ways we can increase these wonderful proteins in our skin so that our skin stays where it needs to.
Sleep is important. That's when our bodies get better, repair themselves and product more of the stuff we need to operate. From hormones to proteins, sleep restores our tissues, muscles and skin and gets it ready for the next day.
And it's not just about Collagen and Elastin.
Make sure you're room is dark, not too hot.
Don't use your electronic devices before bed and try to have a relaxing routine before you got to sleep.
#2 Cut the Sugar and Processed Foods
Some foods like wheat is VERY different from what it was even 50 years ago. Modern science changed the products we eat every day and we still are not sure how well our bodies tolerate some of it.
So when it comes to sugar and processed foods, it's best to stay away.
A little sugar here and there is ok, but be careful and packaged foods as they often will contain a lot of added sugar that will greatly increase your sugar intake without you knowing.
#3 Supplement Collagen
This one people don't really agree on, but there is some data that suggest that you can eat or supplement with certain foods to increase your collagen.
Collagen powders are becoming more common.
Things like bone broths are great for getting collagen in.
Collagen is made from animals and animal products so there isn't anything vegan available.
#4 Watch Your Sun Exposure!
This one is a biggie.
Make sure you are protected with SPF.
Watch your exposure so you don't burn and make sure to be aware of UV rays even on cloudy days.
Sun rays will destroy the collagen and elastin in your skin and those effects can be very noticeable over time, so if you take away one thing from this, it's be careful in the sun!
Collagen and Elastin Summary
In summary, add these two to your anti-aging toolkit. They are powerful and will have a great impact on your appearance as you get older.