Your skin is 75% collagen.
Collagen is the body’s major structural protein. It makes up 33% of the protein found in your body. It supports tissues and organs and attaches muscles to bones. In fact, your bones are made up of a combination of collagen and various minerals such as calcium and phosphorous.
So, what does that have to do with keeping your skin wrinkle free?
Like I said, collagen makes up 75% of your skin. But what I didn’t say is that the smooth, plump appearance of young, healthy skin is due in large part to the presence of healthy collagen levels.
This is why beauty seekers around the world search for new ways to boost collagen levels and repair past collagen damage—some go so far as to inject collagen proteins into the skin to plump wrinkles and add volume to the lips.
This is where it gets interesting.
It has always been believed that the breakdown of healthy collagen and the decline in collagen production was a natural and unavoidable side effect of aging. Because of that, we are doomed to wrinkles, age spots and thin, drooping skin.
We all know that sun damage and cigarettes are not conducive to healthy skin.
What we didn’t know was that a diet based on carbohydrates was an even bigger threat to healthy, youthful skin.
- Eating a diet based on refined carbohydrates raises our blood sugar
- Raised blood sugar increases the production of Reactive Oxygen Species and Advanced Glycation End-Products
- Advanced Glycation End-Products or AGEs are linked directly to the aging process (hence the acronym)
- Collagen is especially prone to damage caused by AGEs
- It is the collagen that has been damaged by AGEs that causes the loss of elasticity in your skin.
And it’s not just your skin.
The same diet that causes your skin to droop and wrinkle does the same type of damage to the rest of the collagen in your body…in your joints, arteries, heart and lungs.
So What Should You Do?
- Stop eating a diet based on processed and refined carbohydrates (i.e. white bread, white rice…learn more here)
- Start eating more vegetables
- Don’t avoid fruit, but treat it more like a dessert and not a main course.
- Don’t be afraid of natural fats…animal fats, olive oil, the less processed the better
- Basically, stop eating processed junk and start eating foods that come without labels and long lists of ingredients
SOURCE: Health Habits, http://www.healthhabits.ca/2008/11/04/does-your-diet-make-your-skin-look-old/