Important things to know about Vitamin C
A beautiful you is healthy you. Your skin is firm and smooth, with even skin tone and glowing color. Your body is free from medical problems and it is normal in function and tolerance. We are usually born with health, but time, the sun and environmental assaults take their toll. What can you do to maintain a youthful you?
Vitamin C is one of the easiest, safest, quickest and cheapest alternatives available to help you maintain as well as recapture your body's vitality.
Truly beautiful skin, well into your mature years, is a product of overall health, skin care and self-pampering.
It may seem unimportant to contemplate doing anything about your health before reaching your thirties. However, it is in our twenties that the effects of aging begin to be visible in our complexion. It is never too early to start anti-aging and skin care. Another commonly missed fact is that 80% of all sun damage occurs in the first 18 years of life! So the benefits of sun block in a skin care regimen become readily apparent.
Genetically programmed chronologic aging causes changes in collagen and elastin, the connective tissues that supply firmness and elasticity to the skin. The genetic program of individuals is different, so the loss of skin firmness and elasticity occurs at different rates and different times in one individual as compared to another. As skin becomes less elastic, it also becomes drier, and the fat padding begins to disappear. This causes the skin to sag and look less supple. Collagen is the fibrous protein that makes up more than 33% of your body and approximately 75% of your skin. Perhaps best known as the connective tissue between bone and muscle, collagen is the brick and mortar that ties your cells together. Similar to a wire-mesh screen, cells fill the holes of the screen, but they wouldn’t have any structure without collagen. It is this pliant molecular scaffolding that supports your skin and connects it to your skeleton. As we age, however, this scaffolding changes significantly, as is evidenced by facial lines, wrinkles, and other signs of aging. Vitamin C can help.
In addition to photoaging (sun damage), aging skin experiences a thinning of the fatty tissue that lies just beneath the skin surface which makes it less tolerant to physical trauma. Our skin is also at the mercy of many forces as we age: sun, harsh weather and our own bad habits. Of course, genetics also play a large part in all of this, which is why these changes occur at different times in different people. Again, Vitamin C can help.
Ultimately wrinkles will appear. Wrinkles come in all stages, sizes and depths. Overall health usually dimishes with changes in our minds, heart, blood pressure... Don't forget, Vitamin C can help.
You deserves self-pampering and a Vitamin C advantage. By self-pampering, we do not only mean a day at the spa (even though that feels pretty nice). We mean making choices every single day that reflect your commitment to yourself and to your body. Taking proper care of your body means the right nourishment, keeping it in great shape and having a positive attitude. A younger you is a goal worth striving for but so is a healthy you. A Healthy you starts with Vitamin C.
Vitamin C is important but this concept should really be looked at as "wellness". Keep reading because we are just getting started...
After many years of research, scientists, dermatologists and plastic surgeons have discovered that a variety of natural ingredients and vitamin extracts significantly help slow down and even reverse the signs of aging skin. These ingredients are now found in many physician developed and physician recommended anti-aging skin care products. Vitamin C is probably the most significant!
What is Vitamin C?
Vitamin C is a water-soluble vitamin, otherwise known as ascorbic acid. Vitamin C is responsible for many functions in your body. Vitamin C is an antioxidant and can protect your body from free radicals, which may cause heart disease and cancer. Vitamin C is responsible for producing collagen. Collagen is present in your muscles and bones. It is responsible for holding the cells together. Vitamin C helps your immune system. It helps you heal from scrapes and bruises. Vitamin C also keeps your gums healthy. People with lack of Vitamin C often develop black, swollen gums otherwise known as scurvy. Vitamin C in supplements is usually sold as ascorbic acid. Antioxidants such as vitamin C act to protect your cells against the effects of free radicals, which are potentially damaging by-products of energy metabolism. Free radicals can damage cells and may contribute to the development of cardiovascular disease and cancer. More conclusive studies are underway to determine whether vitamin C (through its ability to limit production of free radicals) helps to prevent or delay the development of those chronic diseases. The data for Vitamin C looks very promising so far. Vitamin C has also been shown to play a role in immune function, in DNA repair, the anti-aging process and other metabolic processes.
What is the best source of vitamin C?
Citrus fruits (lime, lemon, orange, grapefruit), tomatoes, and potatoes are good common sources of vitamin C. Other foods that are good sources of vitamin C include papaya, broccoli, brussels sprouts, black currants, strawberries, cauliflower, spinach, cantaloupe, and kiwifruit. Vitamin C ingredients are now found in many physician developed and physician recommended anti-aging skin care products and herbal supplements.
Vitamin C Facts
What is the recommended intake for vitamin C?
The average daily dietary intake level that is sufficient to
meet the nutrient requirements of nearly all (97-98%) healthy individuals in
each age and gender group.
Vitamin C nutritional supplements do not require FDA approval. Make sure that each Vitamin C formula you buy is triple-checked by a quality-control process conducted by independent laboratories that follow general FDA guidelines for testing.
Who is at risk for vitamin C deficiency?
Vitamin C (ascorbic acid) is essential for collagen formation
and helps maintain the integrity of substances of mesenchymal origin, such as
connective tissue, osteoid tissue, and dentin. It is essential for wound healing
and facilitates recovery from burns. This vitamin is a strong reducing agent and
is reversibly oxidized and reduced in the body, functioning as a redox system in
the cell. It is involved in the metabolism of phenylalanine and tyrosine. As a
reductant (with oxygen, ferrous iron, and a 2-ketoacid), vitamin C activates
enzymes that hydroxylate procollagen proline and lysine to procollagen
hydroxyproline and hydroxylysine. In scorbutic animals, elastin becomes
increasingly deficient in hydroxyproline. Vitamin C protects folic acid
reductase, which converts folic acid to folinic acid, and may help release free
folic acid from its conjugates in food. Vitamin C facilitates the absorption of
iron. Severe deficiency results in scurvy,
an acute or chronic disease characterized by hemorrhagic manifestations and
abnormal osteoid and dentin formation. A physician can determine if
they are the result of a vitamin E deficiency or are from another cause.
If you are worried about Vitamin C deficiency, please
contact your physician right away.
In adults, primary deficiency is usually due to food idiosyncrasies or improper diet. Deficiencies occur in GI disease, especially when the patient is on an "ulcer diet." Pregnancy, lactation, and thyrotoxicosis increase vitamin C requirements; acute and chronic inflammatory diseases, surgery, and burns can significantly increase requirements. Diarrhea increases fecal loss, and achlorhydria decreases the amount absorbed. Cold or heat stress increases urinary excretion of vitamin C. Heat (eg, sterilization of formulas, cooking) can destroy vitamin C in food.
Vitamin C Benefits Cholesterol Levels
Vitamin C Deficiency on Pregnancy
Vitamin C for Dental Health
Vitamin C in the Development of Cataracts
Vitamin C Supplements Improve Endothelial Functioning
Vitamin C and Coronary Heart Disease
Vitamin C and Heart Failure
Vitamin C Supplements Improve Heart and Lung
Vitamin C Improves Concentration
Vitamin C and Improvement in the Number of Cells
Vitamin C and Vitamin K in Cancer Cell Death
Vitamin C on Lipid Levels in the Blood
Vitamin C and Treatment for Meniere’s Disease
Vitamin C use Prevents Common Cold
Vitamin C Supplementation on Type II Diabetes
Vitamin C and the Effects on Dementia
Why is Vitamin C skin care important?
The most popular physician-strength skin care solutions.
University of California human development scholars recently published a report on optimal aging stating that members of the World War II and Baby Boom generations are physiologically 10 to 15 years younger than their parents were at the same age. The researchers credit this remarkable new youthfulness to medical advances made over the past 50 years as well as good nutrition, exercise, spirituality, and the avoidance of toxic habits such as excessive smoking and drinking (USA Today Magazine 2003).
One area that has shown enormous progress in the field of plastic surgery and anti-aging medicine is skin care and Vitamin C. More specifically, the development of what has become known as physician-strength skin care products or skin care with nutrients that positively impact your skin. Exposure to sunlight, changes in the underlying skin structure, and the steady tug of gravity can, of course, give the skin an aged, mottled, puffy, dark, “tired” look, regardless of how conscientious you are about your health.
The newest physician-strength skin care products (like neaclear) can make a dramatic difference, giving skin a firmer, more radiant look. A great skin care product should be infused with ingredients that penetrate the epidermis to do more to help correct the skin challenges imposed by sun exposure and time. Laboratory studies highlight the ability of advanced skin care technology to deliver a greater amount of these special ingredients to the skin, allowing for maximum penetration.
Some outstanding skin care products are now available. On the cutting edge of high-tech skin care, neaclear is considered one of the finest physician-strength skin care products currently available in the personal care and health & beauty industry. neaclear's bioactive ingredients have been clinically verified to enhance cellular turnover by increasing oxygen consumption which helps improve cellular renewal. Many physicians strongly support the view that injecting skin care with oxygen and Vitamins C & E can be used for the prevention of skin photo-damage. Just as importantly, studies verify that supporting the transdermal collagen matrix is key because it encourages firmer, more elastic and more youthful-looking skin.
The Future of Vitamin C Skin Care
The Latest Skin Care Ingredients
What are the special skin care ingredients that are contributing to the youthful appearance seen everywhere you turn?
Along with cutting-edge ingredients, many skin-smoothing components have been studied in clinical settings for decades and have stood the test of time. Now every woman has access to a wide range of wonderful skin care advances.
Two Skin Care Factors
Beautiful, radiant skin is dependent on two essential factors. First, we must enhance the skin’s antioxidant reserve in order to ward off toxins, which can make skin look dull and dry. A special blend of antioxidants can help to nourish the skin around the eyes, lips, and forehead to give it a healthy, youthful-looking glow. Second, it is critical to strengthen the actual structural matrix of the cells to promote the luxurious look of moisture-rich, smooth and radiant skin.
Step 1: Skin Care Needs To Provide Skin Defense Against Oxidative Stress
It is essential to keep the surface of your skin free of lipid peroxides, which cause oxidative stress and make the skin appear dull, lined, and old. Liquid Oxygen deserves top billing for its ability to improve the healing of skin damage. Liquid Oxygen also helps to prevent deep furrows and lines and helps maintain a silkier, smoother, skin glow. Liquid Oxygen allows your skin to take in some much needed deep breaths.
Another major player is the role of antioxidants specifically Vitamins C & E. However, Vitamins C & E while effective individually, work together synergistically in a much more effective manner. Vitamins C & E even promote oxygen, which is a catalyst for superoxide dismutase, prompting it to go to work scavenging free radicals while also inhibiting further injury from lipid peroxidation. Oxygen is a key mechanism to stimulate direct influences on wound healing — including the growth of new skin cells (Goodson 1976). Rejuvenation of skin cells can bring the appearance of diminished fine lines and wrinkles.
One of the major culprits behind leathery, wrinkled, moisture-sapped skin is overexposure to ultraviolet (UV) radiation. Some of the sun’s harmful rays are powerful enough to even penetrate window glass and can be reflected from snow, sand, concrete, and water. The end result is burning of your skin and sun damage on a cellular level. A common question is can previous damage from the sun be repaired? Vitamin C is one of nature’s greatest gifts. This antioxidant provides protection from the sun by warding off UVB rays, according to a 1996 report published in Acta Dermato-Venerologica (West 2000). Multiple studies have shown that tocopherol was protective against UV damage and was capable of repairing the top layer of skin cells caused by irradiation. There are numerous skin care and anti-aging products that take advatage of the useful properties of Vitamin C.
Step 2: Skin Care Needs To Strengthen and Hydrate Cells
With a marked reduction in hydration, elastin and collagen (as occurs with aging and sun damage), skin may look dry, creased,and lined. Extensively studied in the anti-aging literature, Liquid Oxygen is a vital compound that can boost blood circulation to help skin cells receive nourishment and remain healthy. As some physicians have stated, "Adding liquid oxygen to skin care was a stroke of genius." This is especially necessary for moisture-deprived skin around the eyes, between the brows and around the lips. A skin care product that causes a noticeable increase in skin hydration means a younger-looking, more vibrant skin. The hydrating effect of Liquid Oxygen is noticeable within 10 to 21 days and lasts as long as the skin care product is applied.
In a youth-driven society, it’s hard not to notice wrinkles. However, skin care advances have made it possible to fight back! Drink plenty of water, eat a well-balanced diet and arm yourself with a skin care regimen that contains the richest blend of legendary, cutting-edge ingredients that can help you cheat time.
What else can you do for your skin other than Vitamin C?
VITAMIN C is great but dON'T FORGET ABOUT NUTRITION
While most of us have heard that eating a wide variety of fruits and vegetables is a helpful way to fend off a host of ailments by providing the body with essential antioxidants, vitamins, and minerals, the American Dietetic Association (ADA) says that 80% of us don’t meet the basic guidelines for consuming fruits and vegetables set by the U.S. Food Guide Pyramid (ADA 2003). In other words, most of us are not getting enough of the vital nutrients our bodies require.
Keeping the skin in proper working order requires a balanced diet rich in vitamins like C, A, and E as well as those in the B-complex group. Each of these vitamins helps maintain skin function in a different way:
Vitamin C helps the body create collagen.
Vitamin A is required by skin cells for maintenance and repair.
Vitamin E improves circulation, aids in repairing tissue and reduces scarring in some wounds.
Vitamin B3 is particularly helpful in the formation of healthy new skin cells.
Niacin improves blood flow to the skin's surface.
The antioxidant vitamins (C, A and E) may also assist in scavenging mutant cells known as free radicals. (Free radicals are created either as a by-product of the immune system's battle against infection or by environmental toxins.) Minerals like chromium and zinc are also necessary. Chromium aids in reducing infections to the skin, while zinc helps heal tissue and prevent scarring.
VITAMIN C is great but don't forget the importance of stress management
You could be adhering fanatically to a good exercise and nutrition regimen, but if you don’t reduce your stress or use stress-reduction techniques, you’re headed for high blood pressure and, ultimately, disaster. Research shows that hot-tempered men are far more likely to have heart disease and heart attacks than their more serene peers (Reuters Health 2002). Anger releases catecholamines, which are compounds that constrict blood vessels, increase heart rate and boost blood pressure. Become aware of “anger traps” - people, situations, and conversations that can trigger anger. If you can’t avoid them, remain calm and breathe deeply. Repeat often. And yes, it is true that our emotions show on our faces (and not just in the form of furrowed brows and frown lines). When we are under stress, our bodies react with varying hormonal fluctuations, release of toxins, constriction of blood vessels and depletion of hydration. Stress lowers our resistance to infection and interrupts normal sleep patterns. Guess what? These reactions directly affect the skin's ability to perform at an optimal level.
VITAMIN C is great but don't forget to get your beauty sleep
A 2001 National Sleep Foundation poll found that only 37% of adults are getting the recommended eight hours of sleep nightly (Davis 2002). With today’s crazy schedules and soaring stress levels, getting the necessary amount of deep sleep crucial to keeping us energetic and alert can be difficult despite our best intentions. Proper rest and relaxation also help your skin (as well as the rest of your body) to operate at peak performance. How much rest is enough? Individuals vary. Some find that eight hours a night is not enough. Others thrive on five hours or less. It's important to find the amount of sleep that is best for you and make time for it. Not only will you feel better... you'll look better, too!
VITAMIN C is great but exercise is also great for your skin
Lack of physical activity contributes to 300,000 deaths each year due to heart disease, stroke, diabetes and other conditions (CNN 2002). A 30-minute walk every day is all it takes to significantly improve your health. You’ll do your heart an even bigger favor by walking two extra miles a day. When you exercise, you increase your oxygen intake, improve your circulation, lower your blood pressure, promote more restful sleep, induce perspiration (and the excretion of toxins) as well as release endorphins (a group of naturally-occurring proteins that help lift spirits as well as zap pain). It has been shown that people who exercise live longer and more often describe their lives as happier and less stressful than those who are sedentary.
VITAMIN C is great but don't forget to hydrate Yourself Everyday with h20!
New research reports that people who drink at least five glasses of water a day are less likely to die from a heart attack than people who drink two or fewer glasses a day (McCook 2002). Researchers believe the water is absorbed by the blood, which decreases blood “thickness.” This reduces the risk of developing a blood clot that can lead to a heart attack. Besides, when you drink water, it helps to take away the appetite for fattening holiday foods. Skin is the largest organ of the body, it gets thirsty! It has 2 layers. The outer layer (epidermis) is water-proof while the inner layer (dermis) has oil (sebaceous) glands, sweat glands, nerves, blood vessels & hair follicles. Drinking water does keep you hydrated, which helps your skin look and feel better. Get in the standard 6 to 8 eight-ounce glasses throughout the day -- more if you're a heavy exerciser.
VITAMIN C is great but Don't apply bacteria to your face!
Did you know that bacteria are already present in makeup even before you buy it? And, according to the Food and Drug Administration, each time you use a product’s applicator or makeup brush with unclean hands, you are adding more bacteria to both the product and your face! Even if you’re rigorous about cleansing your hands and your makeup utensils before use, cosmetics that have been sitting around for a while still lose their ability over time to kill bacteria (Cohen 2002).
To protect your skin from bacteria, experts recommend that you keep track of how long you’ve been using a product. “The risk of infection can be reduced if you change skin care products every three to four months. How do you know it’s time to toss out a skin care product? Any noticeable change in texture, color, or smell is a clear indication that it’s time to replace the cosmetic.
And while you are updating your skin care products, why not upgrade them? With scientific breakthroughs occurring regularly, be sure that the product you are using to moisturize your face contains superb hydrating agents and the latest cutting-edge antioxidants that protect against cell destructors (including sun exposure).
VITAMIN C is great but remember that smoking is really bad for your skin
Smoking and secondary smoke affect our skin in potentially a very devastating way. Any exposure to smoke either directly or indirectly can result in poor wound healing, delayed wound healing, skin loss necessitating skin grafting, increased risk in wound infection and loss of skin and deeper tissues, all resulting from decreased blood supply to those areas. The diminished blood flow to skin wound edges can cause the breakdown of skin and scabbing. Also, there are well-known increased risks with anesthesia such as increased chance of developing pneumonia.
Again, remember that slow wound healing (months instead of weeks), skin loss resulting in scabbing and prolonged need for dressing changes, and infection usually involving the need for antibiotics (but sometimes another surgery to drain the infection) all are complications that can occur at a much higher risk if you smoke or are exposed to smoke (Instead of less than 5%, it can be as high as 60% ).
Please be honest with your skin care doctor so that they can take good care of you and help prevent problems. Plastic surgery procedures are totally elective operations so there is no reason to take any unnecessary risks. If your doctor tells you smoking is not a problem, I would think twice about your choice of doctor.
VITAMIN C is great but always USE SUNBLOCK!
It is important to mention sun block. All types of skin need to be treated. There is a tendency for people with darker skin to mistakenly believe that they are protected from the harmful rays of the sun. While it might be true that they get less skin cancer, there is still a significant percentage that do. With more sun damage and exposure, the risk multiplies. Of course, their increased pigmentation does not offer any protection for the accelerated aging effect the sun has on their skin. Always include sun block in your skin care regimen! Don't forget about sun protection for your lips and eyes. Wearing sunglasses helps protect your eyes. Both of these areas should not be forgotten.
To make the point, check out the two pictures below:
The left picture is a 58 year old American Indian female who spent practically all of her time outdoors. The right picture is a 72 year old Tibetian monk who spent practically all of his time indoors away from the sun. I believe the pictures say it all!
Again, sun block is an
essential and integral part of
an effective skin care regimen.
Visiting your skin care specialist or skin care doctor can benefit you in the long run. They could help you decide what is best for your skin care needs.
Dr Speron has a tremendous amount of experience with Vitamin C skin care and Vitamin C in Anti-Aging Medicine in Chicago. He is able to offer all types of options to his skin care patients:
What do our ANTI-AGING patients say ABOUT VITAMIN C?
"Vitamin C is a tremendous
advantage!" - AS,