Woman using aloe vera to sooth sunburn

Soothing Sunburned Backs and Shoulders

Sun protection is always important but the face, neck and shoulders are crucial areas. Skin is thin near the tops of our bodies which also tend to be closest to the sun and receive the most exposure. The face and neck are also the most susceptible to two of the most common forms of cancer, basal and squamous cell carcinoma. Furthermore, people with melanoma of the head and neck are almost twice as likely to die from the disease as patients with melanomas on other parts of their bodies. So what is the best way to keep these parts of our bodies safe?

Hats are a great line of defense. The Skin Cancer Foundation recommends you wear a hat with a brim that extends three inches or more all the way around to shade the face, neck, ears and even the tops of the shoulders.

Sunglasses are also essential. Solar UVR can cause or contribute to conditions such as cataracts, macular degeneration, ocular melanomas and other skin cancers. Five to ten percent of all skin cancers arise on the eyelids. The SCF recommends looking for glasses that cover the eyes, eyelids and as much of the surrounding area as possible. They should come with a tag that verifies that they block 99-100 percent of all UV radiation.

Many sportswear manufacturers also offer a variety of high UPF staples including hoods, scarves, wraps, sarongs and caps. These will offer protection to the head, neck and shoulder area. They are designed to keep you cool, dry and sun safe during outdoor activities. Choose high UPF swimsuits that cover more skin like one piece suits that might offer protection to shoulders.

Many people forget about sun protection in cold weather venues, but ice and snow reflect about 80% of the sun’s UV light, doubling the intensity of exposure. Also, snow and strong wind can wear away sunscreen and reduce its effectiveness. For optimum protection, go for hats made of high tech manmade materials that will keep you comfortable and sun protected. Wraparound sunglasses with UV protective cut glare will block most UVR.

Of course, sunscreen is always an important consideration for the face and neck area. “You might want to look for a sunscreen designed for the face since these products are formulated to suit the needs of different skin types,” explains Arielle Kauvar, M.D., a clinical professor of dermatology at New York University School of Medicine. Many facial sunscreens are oil free which gives them a lighter feel. They are less likely to clog pores of those with oily or acne prone skin. These sunscreens are also easier to use under makeup. Beware of facial sunscreens with a strong scent since those are more likely to cause skin irritations. Also, avoid sunscreens for the face with high SPF as the higher levels of active ingredients will feel heavier on the skin. Products with SPF of 30 should offer a perfect balance of feeling lightweight on the skin while still offering the recommended amount of sunscreen protection.

Woman looking at pills

Pills to Live Longer?

Longevity and a slow or even stop to the aging process and the increased risk of diseases, wrinkling, and general decrepitude it tends to lead to have long since been an enduring obsession of the human race. If you could take a pill that would let you live longer, be happier, and look younger for longer, would you? For many, this is a given; the goal of a better, longer, happier life is so ubiquitous is may very well be a defining trait of collective human consciousness. And along those lines, there are many researchers and prodigious experts in various fields who are chasing after ways to slow, halt, or even reverse aging.

But how close are we? You may hear a variety of claims regarding life-extending and age-slowing miracle cures, but the sad truth is that if it sounds too good to be true (read: if it’s inconsistent with current well-substantiated medical knowledge and is not, itself backed up by solid research or a consensus of expert opinion), it probably is. Granted, when it comes to supplements for living longer, there is something to be said in edge cases at the very least, but it takes a lot of wading through hoaxes to find it.

Antioxidant Supplements
Antioxidants show some promise for helping slow aging according to the free-radical theory of aging. That said, aforementioned theory lacks a preponderance of evidence and therefore should probably be looked at as a “maybe, maybe not” sort of thing. Further, taking antioxidant supplements has been shown by a lot of well-documented and controlled studies lately to be entirely ineffectual, and maybe even harmful. Of course, that says nothing about obtaining antioxidants through your diet by, say, eating dark leafy greens and sipping red wine in careful moderation, which are, in fact, pretty healthy habits.

Human Growth Hormone
Touted by some snake oil vendors as an anti-aging solution, human growth hormone as a supplement has, in fact, been shown to accelerate aging, and should be avoided at all costs. This hormone is naturally occurring in our bodies and plays a role in growth and development. It is not only not necessary to supplement growth hormone, it’s potentially harmful and just a really bad idea.

Stem Cell Treatments
Stem cells show some promise for medical research, and their discovery was certainly a boon to researchers working on cracking the code of aging, but there are as of yet no reliable end-user applications for them on the market. If someone tries to sell you a “stem cell therapy” of any kind, stay far away.

Vitamin and Mineral Supplements
There’s good and bad news here. Bad news first: “overloading” on vitamins, which is often recommended for good health and extended youth, is not only entirely useless, it can in many cases be harmful, and depending on what vitamin you’re overloading and by how much, you can end up with anything from nausea to festering, ugly skin lesions. Please don’t do that to yourself.

So how about the good news? Well, while it’s always best to get vitamins and minerals from your diet, because it guarantees they’re easier for your body to absorb and utilize, taking a vitamin supplement (read: not overloading, just taking as much as you need; a.k.a. 100% daily value and never much over) can be pretty beneficial to your overall health, and therefore your chances of living longer and healthier.

What Else Can You Do?
Simple. Eat a varied diet, with only very small portions of meat, mostly fruits, vegetables, and grains, and include plenty of dark, leafy greens. Exercise moderately but regularly, foster healthy relationships with those around you (communicate clearly and openly!), accept what you can’t change, and don’t be afraid to admit when you need help. Work on all the above, and you’ll be well on your way to a long, happy, healthy life.

Woman stretching on yoga mat indoors

Exercise and Anti-Aging

It’s pretty much a given that exercise is good for you. It’s one of those ubiquitous pieces of common knowledge that’s been proven so thoroughly it’s rightfully accepted as fact. But did you know that not only is regular exercise beneficial to general health and well-being, but it can also help you to ensure that you age well and live a long, healthy, happy life.

Exercise Fights Disease
Well, not directly, but it can reduce your chances of contracting them. Regular cardiovascular activity strengthens your heart, so it doesn’t have to work as hard keeping your body running smoothly, so to speak, reducing the risk of heart-related diseases. It also, of course, burns calories which can help keep you at a healthy weight, which helps to prevent conditions like diabetes, back pain, high blood pressure, stroke, osteoporosis, and much more. Exercising regularly also boosts your mood, so you’re less likely to get depressed or be overly anxious. All of these things, of course, can potentially increase both quality and length of life.

Exercise is the Ultimate Anti-Inflammatory
One of the worst aspects of aging is inflammation. Inflammation becomes more and more of a problem with age and contributes to a lot of the symptoms of old age. Exercise, in the right amount at the right frequency, can actually reduce inflammation and therefore help to forestall many effect of aging.

For the best effect, you need to try for 150 minutes of moderate to vigorous physical activity. That may sound like a big number, but think about it, it’s only 2 and a half hours…in a whole week! You can accomplish this with 30 minute sessions, once a day, for five days, and then two days off, or with 20 minutes every day, with no days off (unlike strength training, which you should absolutely not do every day or you’ll tear up your muscles, cardiovascular exercise is fine to do every single day).

The other thing to remember is never to overdo it. Studies suggest that regular exercise for more than 30 minutes in a session or expending more than 70% of your maximum effort will actually increase inflammation, the opposite of what you need to age well.

And finally, just remember that if it’s difficult at first, you can and should build up to things gradually. If 20-30 minutes is too much at first, start with 10 a day, and add 5 minutes every week until you get to your goal. You’ll find that what once seemed impossible will be easily doable if you commit to it long term and build up gradually.

Remember that Exercise is Only Half the Equation
Exercise is incredibly important, but you also have to remember to eat right and take care of your body in other ways. So after that workout, don’t forget to shower and re-do your skincare routine! And eat a diet rich in vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants, with very little meat and a lot of leafy greens. And don’t forget to pamper yourself every once in awhile! Feeling good about yourself is just as important to a long, happy life as the physical aspects are.

Woman smoking outside

Smoking & Skin Aging

Smoking is an unappealing habit. It leaves you with bad breath, yellow nails, and moreover is linked to a vast host of health conditions such as lung cancer and even depression. What you may not fully realize however is that smoking also leads to significant premature aging of the skin and causes wrinkles, furrows and thinning lips. There’s really no soft way of saying this – if you smoke cigarettes, you need to stop. Many scientists have also stated that smoking adds between 10 and 20 years to your natural age.

It is estimated that around 1 million people start smoking in the United States every year and virtually all will go on to regret this decision as they find out the effect this poisonous habit has on their health, bodies and skin. Some studies have established that smoking is actually worse for women as the nicotine is more addictive. Women who smoke are also twice as likely to have heart attacks, strokes and lung cancer than their male counterparts.

How Does Smoking Age the Skin
The effects of smoking on skin have been known for a long while. One study as early as 1965 identified what is now known as ‘smoker’s face’. What has become more apparent in recent years is exactly how smoking causes premature aging. There are numerous mechanisms by which smoking accelerates aging. It begins with the formation of free-radicals in the body when exposed to cigarette smoke. Free radicals are unstable molecules that cause disease and damage to cell DNA. Smoking also restricts blood flow to the minuscule veins in your skin known as capillaries preventing oxygen and vital nutrients from doing their job. All in all, this leads to a dull, grayish skin tone which has an obviously discolored look.

Additionally, smoking increases production of enzymes that break down collagen in the skin which is integral to maintaining its elasticity. Smoking for many years will also deplete stores of vitamins A and C, both of which are involved in skin protection and health and help to keep harsh UV rays at bay.

Finally, the actions involved in continually sucking on cigarettes and squinting from cigarette smoke causes deep lines to develop around the eyes and mouth. Smoking doesn’t just cause wrinkling on your face, it is also associated with damage and sagging on nearly all parts of the body including your inner arms and neck.

Reversing Skin Damage
Many smokers wonder if they can reverse the damage they have caused to themselves by smoking. Simply put, the best thing you can do to begin the reversal process is stop smoking – although you must realize you will never fully undo the damage that you’ve done. Healthy diets and supplements are great at maintaining skin health. You should also be aware that skin damage won’t usually appear until 10 or 20 years after you began smoking. A proper skin care regimen using anti-aging and moisturizing creams can also assist in preventing the formation of further wrinkles and fine lines.

Woman with mature skin

Perioral Region Fine Lines and Wrinkles

Think about how many times throughout the day you make facial expressions – you may not even be able to come up with a number because it happens so frequently. Over time, these expressions result in facial lines and wrinkles as your skin loses its collagen and elasticity. Perioral lines are common among aging women, and there are ways that you can help to prevent and treat these fine lines. Keep reading to learn more about perioral lines and how you can get rid of them.

What are Perioral Fine Lines and Wrinkles?
Perioral fine lines and wrinkles are those that occur around the mouth and lip areas. There are three major types of perioral fine lines and wrinkles:

  • Smile Lines (Nasolabial Lines) – Smile lines are the lines that run from the bottom of your nose to the corners of your mouth. These often start small and progressively deepen with age.
  • Marionette Lines – Marionette lines often result in an angry or sad looking face as you age. These lines are vertical fine lines and wrinkles found at the corners of your mouth and they can give your mouth a naturally downturned appearance that can make you look angry or sad even when you are completely relaxed.
  • Vertical Lip Lines – Smoking is one of the leading causes of vertical lip lines for two reasons: the constant lip pursing and the damaging chemicals, toxins and free radicals that result from smoking. Nearly all women, even non-smokers, end up with vertical lip lines because they are caused by repeated motion of the lips. Things like pursing your lips and drinking through straws also result in vertical lip lines.

Woman touching her face

Prevention and Treatments for Perioral Fine Lines and Wrinkles
You can’t live your life completely expressionless, but learning how to relax your facial muscles is a good start in preventing perioral fine lines and wrinkles. Facial massage is a great way to provide your muscles with much-needed relaxation, and you can do a quick two-minute massage at the end of your nighttime facial routine or as your apply an antioxidant serum. If you are a smoker, quit now. Always remember to apply sunscreen to every area of your face, and follow a healthy lifestyle that includes drinking plenty of water.

There are multiple ways you can treat perioral fine lines and wrinkles, including:

  • Facial Exercises – Giving your face a nice massage can help to smooth the appearance of wrinkles, and performing facial exercises are a way you can help strengthen your muscles. When you lose collagen in the perioral region, fine lines and wrinkles become more prominent. Using facial exercises tones your muscles, and when you have sufficient muscle tone, it can make up for the lack of collagen in your skin and decrease the appearance of wrinkles.
  • Topical Treatments – Anti-aging creams, serums and targeted treatments are all ways that you can help treat perioral fine lines. Look for skin care products that use antioxidants like vitamin C or resveratrol, that have moisturizing agents like hyaluronic acid and/or products that contain retinol. All of these ingredients help to fight the appearance of existing wrinkles and help prevent the formation of new fine lines.
  • Botox and Fillers – Injectables are a common way to diminish the look of fine lines and wrinkles. Injectables like hyaluronic acid help to plump up your skin and smooth wrinkles, while Botox paralyzes the muscles around the face, keeping them in a permanent state of relaxation. It is important to note that while these treatments are effective for wrinkles, the results are not permanent and typically last for a few months.

When it comes to preventing signs of aging, including perioral fine lines and wrinkles, sunscreen is the best anti-aging weapon you can use. A skin care routine full of quality ingredients like retinol and resveratrol will also significantly impact the appearance of your fine lines and wrinkles. Be consistent with your skin care routine and give your face some extra attention with exercises and massages to see your perioral fine lines and wrinkles diminish and disappear.

Woman squinting at laptop

Does Squinting Cause Fine Lines?

Beauty is surrounded by many rules, guidelines and myths and it can be daunting to keep up with everything that you are or are not supposed to be doing to and for your skin. If you’ve ever heard that squinting your eyes can cause fine lines and wrinkles, you’ve heard correctly. This is one beauty myth that is absolutely true. Keep reading to find out why squinting causes more fine lines and wrinkles and what you can do to prevent additional wrinkles under and around your eyes.

Does Squinting Cause Fine Lines and Wrinkles?
Unfortunately, squinting really does lead to more fine lines and wrinkles. When you squint, whether you’re trying to watch TV, read your book and check emails on your computer, you are contributing to more fine lines and wrinkles around your eyes. Dawn Davis, M.D, a dermatologist at the Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minnesota says “…when you squint the muscles around your eyes grow stronger, and it’s kind of like a workout; therefore, the overlying skin will wrinkle.”

How to Prevent Wrinkles
The skin under and around your eyes is thinner and more delicate than the skin on the rest of your face, so it is more susceptible to fine lines and wrinkles. While you can never prevent all wrinkles, there are some lifestyle changes you can make to keep yourself from squinting as often and causing more fine lines than necessary.

  • Get an Annual Eye Exam – Often, squinting is a response to not being able to see properly and visiting your optometrist once a year is an excellent way to make sure that your vision is in check. Your optometrist will be able to provide you with prescription glasses, sunglasses or contacts so that you can see clearly without having to squint.
  • The Sun – You’re probably excited about how close spring is because you can bask in warm weather and sunlight, but the sun is another primary cause of squinting. You can prevent squinting due to the sun by wearing sunglasses and hats to keep the sun out of your eyes.
  • Move Away From the Screen – Computers are amazing and you probably can’t imagine your life without one, but they can be quite hard on your eyes. Dr. Julia Tzu of Wall Street Dermatology in New York City, New York suggests that you sit about 1.5 to 2 inches away from your computer screen to help prevent eye strain. Additionally, you should take two to three quick breaks away from your computer screen every hour to give your eyes time to rest, according to New York City based dermatologist, Dr. Janet Prystowsky.

Squinting does indeed cause fine lines and wrinkles, but you can fight back against them by making the above lifestyle changes. To most effectively reduce fine lines and wrinkles under and around your eyes, you should combine the above advice with a high-quality anti-aging eye cream. Put on your glasses and step away from the computer once in awhile to reduce the amount of time you spend squinting, and ultimately to reduce fine lines and wrinkles.

Woman eating berries

Best Foods for Anti-Aging

Aging is inevitable, but you can prolong your life and improve your quality of life by keeping a healthy lifestyle. Your health is influenced by many things like stress, sleep and activity level, but one of the most important factors is the food you consume. A healthy, nutritious diet not only helps to control weight and keep you full of necessary vitamins and minerals, there are many studies suggesting that there are certain foods you can eat to help slow down the aging process. Below, find five of our favorite foods for anti-aging.

Avocado

Avocados
This green fruit (yes, it’s technically a fruit) is an incredible addition to your diet when you want to fight aging because it contains fat. Specifically, it contains a beneficial type of fat known as monounsaturated fats. Monounsaturated fat is minuscule and as such, it can slip through membranes and provide you with protection from free radical damage. Additionally, avocados may also help to increase your bone density due to the presence of the mineral boron, which helps to absorb calcium. Avocado contains about 14 grams of fiber, which expedites the removal of harmful toxins that can speed up the aging process.

Whole wheat bread

Whole Grains
Whole grains are an important component of an anti-aging diet because they contain several health benefits that become increasingly important as you age. By affecting the rate at which your arteries age, whole grains can help to reduce your risk of cardiovascular disease. Whole grains are processed more slowly than processed grains, so they help prevent high blood sugar and diabetes by keeping blood sugar levels more steady for longer periods of time.

Fish

Fish
A staple of the famous anti-aging regime, the Mediterranean diet, fish is an excellent way to provide your body with nourishment and some serious heart health benefits. Studies conducted thirty years ago indicated that native Inuit of Alaska were impressively free of heart disease and scientists attribute this to the extraordinary amount of fish that Inuits consume. Omega-3 fatty acids are found in abundance in fish and these fatty acids prevent cholesterol from building in the arteries and protect against irregular heart rhythms. Additionally, those who consume fish regularly have a lower risk of stroke and Alzheimer’s disease.

Olive oil

Olive Oil
Another essential in the Mediterranean diet is olive oil. Like the avocado, olive oil contains monounsaturated fats, but it also contains other significantly beneficial ingredients that fight aging and age-related diseases. The monounsaturated fats in olive oil have anti-inflammatory properties, which help reduce the risk of cardiovascular disease and cancer. Antioxidants and polyphenols in olive oil also help to slow cognitive decline as you are.

Dark chocolate

Dark Chocolate
Proving that you can enjoy dessert while improving your health, dark chocolate, in moderation, is another food to add to your anti-aging grocery list. Cocoa, the main ingredient in dark chocolate, is full of helpful flavonoids and antioxidants. According to a study published on PubMed.gov, “the body of short-term randomized feeding trials suggests cocoa and chocolate may exert beneficial effects on cardiovascular risk via effects on lowering blood pressure, anti-inflammation, anti-platelet function, higher HDL, decreased LDL oxidation. Meanwhile, the large body of prospective studies of flavonoids suggests the flavonoid content of chocolate may reduce risk of cardiovascular mortality.”

The foods you choose to put into your body have a direct impact on not only your current health, but your future health as well. Eating foods that fight aging help you achieve your maximum potential right now and can help you decrease your risks for major aging concerns including brain function and cardiovascular disease. Construct a diet that includes plenty of fresh produce, lean protein, whole grains and healthy fats and use some of our favorite foods for anti-aging as a guide.

Woman getting a facial massage.

Anti-Aging Facial Treatments

The desire to look younger is nothing new, ancient cultures had many potions or elixirs designed to keep a youthful appearance. Breakthroughs in science have provided some incredible anti-aging skincare ingredients, but there is no magic product that will erase years from your face as soon as you apply it. A great skincare routine is a huge part of maintaining a young visage, but when you need a little extra help, there are anti-aging facial treatments available. Below, find out about three of the least invasive, yet effective, anti-aging facial treatments.

Facial Massage
You know if you want to keep your arms and legs looking long and lean you need to work the muscles and keep them toned, but you probably don’t think about your face that way. Ymedisour facial muscles require attention as well to maintain a younger looking face particularly because when your facial muscles are tense, they encourage wrinkles. Julia Baba, an esthetician at The Spa in Toronto’s Four Seasons Hotel, advocates for facial massages saying they are an amazing anti-aging treatment that you can do daily at home and just one to two minutes per day can provide anti-aging results. The main rule when giving yourself a facial massage is to avoid pulling or tugging at your skin. Use different motions like tapping or softly pinching near your eyebrow area and always massage in an upward circular motion because as Baba says, “you want to work against gravity so that everything goes up.”

Woman getting laser treatment.

Energy Facial Treatments
Lasers are a popular and effective method of addressing signs of aging on your face, but they are also a significant investment and may require multiple treatments. Energy facial treatments are growing in popularity as are the number of medispas or cosmeceutical treatments. The energy facial you receive will be based upon the doctor or medispa you visit, but these treatments have one major thing in common: heat. Many treatments use ultrasound, radio-frequency rays or micro-currents to firm your skin. The idea behind energy facial treatments, which you could do on your lunch hour and return immediately to work, is that the heat used “tricks” your skin into believing it has been damaged so that your skin will remedy the problem with an increase in collagen production. Energy facial treatments are non-invasive and provide immediate results, though the results are temporary.

spa you visit, but these treatments have one major thing in common: heat. Many treatments use ultrasound, radio-frequency rays or micro-currents to firm your skin. The idea behind energy facial treatments, which you could do on your lunch hour and return immediately to work, is that the heat used “tricks” your skin into believing it has been damaged so that your skin will remedy the problem with an increase in collagen production. Energy facial treatments are non-invasive and provide immediate results, though the results are temporary.

Facial Fillers
Botox has been around for ages and it continues to be used frequently as a way to treat sagging skin and wrinkles. While women today want to eradicate wrinkles and look younger, many women are concerned that traditional plastic surgery or Botox will look “fake” and “plastic,” and they desire a treatment that reduces wrinkles and leaves them looking younger, but still natural. When done by a skilled cosmetic dermatologist or plastic surgeon, fillers can have a dramatic effect while remaining more natural looking. Hyaluronic acid as a filler is gaining popularity not only because it fills in lines and wrinkles, but it can actually lift problem areas as well. Frederic Brandt, a dermatologist in Miami and New York, says that when done properly, one can expect a replenishment of youthful contours such as chins, jawlines, cheekbones and temples and lifting of the face. On certain areas, you can place the filler under the muscle, which will add volume but also give a more contoured and structural effect.” According to Brandt, these facial fillers can last up to two years, but proceed with caution when selecting a doctor. “The filler is only part of the equation. The technique in which it’s used is an equally or more important part of the treatment,” notes Brandt.

Prevention is key in the fight against aging, so protecting your skin as best as you can early on will result in less work as you age. Always wear an SPF not only on your face, but down your neck and chest too because these areas show signs of aging as much, if not more, than your face. Be consistent with proper skincare and add a facial massage to your nightly routine and when you need more serious help, look for anti-aging facial treatments like the above to give you a younger, yet natural looking face.

Woman applying lipstick.

Anti-aging Makeup: How Resveratrol is Making its Way Into Cosmetics

We love resveratrol, and we have been big fans of this potent antioxidant for some time. The benefits that resveratrol provides are so incredible and so varied. From anti-aging to fighting cancer, resveratrol truly is a superior antioxidant. Quality skin care lines have been incorporating resveratrol into their products for some time, and now it seems that the entire beauty industry is taking note.

Resveratrol and Aging
Resveratrol is a chemical produced by various plants in order to fight off attackers or to withstand a lack of water or essential nutrients. Resveratrol is a powerful antioxidant that protects your cells against free radical damage. Free radicals are created by exposure to oxygen and sunlight, and they damage collagen and other active enzymes necessary for healthy, youthful looking skin. The subject of much scientific study, how resveratrol works is just now being understood. It is thought that resveratrol works not only by eradicating existing free radicals, but also prevents new free radicals from forming. Applied topically, resveratrol has also been shown to inhibit UVB oxidative stress and to prevent UVA damage.

Resveratrol Beauty Products
While skin care is currently the biggest source of resveratrol products in the industry, makeup companies are beginning to follow suit. BITE beauty, founded in 2011 is one brand that has started incorporating the power of resveratrol into their cosmetics. BITE was conceived when founder Susanne Langmuir developed sensitivities to non-natural beauty ingredients and fragrance chemicals. The idea behind the BITE brand was, “you eat what you put on your lips, so your lipstick should be good for you.” The result was a collection of moisture-rich and creamy lip products that were made using antioxidant ingredients which are actually good enough to eat.

The BITE Luminous Creme Lipstick, is a long-lasting, moisturizing lipstick made from 95% natural contents. One of these natural antioxidant ingredients is resveratrol. The concentration of resveratrol in each lipstick is equal to anywhere from five to 10 glasses of wine. BITE Luminous Creme is available in 24 shades, so you’ll certainly be able to find one that suits you and that protects your lips against early aging.

Perhaps the greatest benefit of skincare and makeup products that contain resveratrol is the level of resveratrol you receive. As we noted, one BITE Luminous Creme Lipstick contains concentrations equal to five to 10 glasses of red wine. While you can certainly receive the benefits of red wine by ingesting it, the concentration of resveratrol is significantly higher in products designed for topical use as opposed to drinking wine. Consuming resveratrol does not provide as much of the antioxidant than topical skincare and cosmetic items containing this skin-saving ingredient. A great beauty routine starts with excellent skincare, but using makeup that contains resveratrol is a great way to increase your defenses against aging and environmental damage.

Woman testing blood samples

Is Young Blood the Fountain of Youth

Very few people are excited about growing old and the aging process. Sure, we want to think we will live long, healthy and fulfilled lives but unfortunately that is rarely the case among the elderly. Diseases such as cancer, heart disease, diabetes, osteoarthritis and neurological degenerative disease like Alzheimer’s. So many products or ingredients have been labeled as “the fountain of youth,” and some of these truly are beneficial to age-related illnesses. For instance, resveratrol has been shown to increase the rate of apoptosis (the process of cancer cells destructing themselves) in addition to providing the benefits of following a calorie-restricted diet. Aging goes far beyond wrinkles and age spots, and scientists are focusing specifically on whether the blood of the young may be beneficial in slowing or reversing the aging process.

The Research
Research on the elderly and the diseases that occur in old age has generally focused on a specific disease or condition: cancer research, Alzheimer’s research, cancer research, etc…However, each of these diseases are often impacted by the aging process, so scientists at Stanford University decided to tackle solutions for aging in general. It may come as a surprise the study of young blood and elderly patients actually started in the 1600s. In 1615, Andreas Labavius initially wanted to connect the arteries of a young man with the arteries of an old man. The German doctor and alchemist had a very hopeful view of the procedure saying, “[t]he hot and spirituous blood of the young man will pour into the old one as if it were from a fountain of youth, and all his weakness will be dispelled.” This account is featured in Sally Rudmann’s Textbook of Bloodbanking and Transfusion Medicine, though there is no record that this procedure actually happened. Research has continued on and off since the 1600s, but the manner in which the tests and experiments are done has changed drastically.

Some of the most recent research focuses on the proteins found in the blood and which of these proteins specifically benefits the blood of the elderly. Several proteins have been isolated and have been shown to have promising results, though scientists continue research and studies to learn more about this topic. Using mice, scientists have been able to show that the brains of old mice started growing new brain cells after receiving the blood of young mice. However, research is ongoing and it is believed that it will not be merely blood plasma that provides the positive results seen in these mice. In addition to the proteins found in blood, scientists believe a number of antibodies to neutralize the effect of aging in old blood.

The Implications
Though research has been promising and exciting thus far, there are some serious concerns. While it is legal to donate blood plasma in the United States, the notion that simply giving blood could potentially protect against the undesirable effects of aging makes the blood donations from young people likely to skyrocket. Blood Plasma Donation Centers are a legal way for individuals to donate blood, however, the fear is that this research could lead to a black market blood problem. Organs are already being harvested and sold illegally, so many fear that this would happen with blood as well.

Ultimately, the science is extraordinary and fascinating, though far from being used as a medically viable option. There may be, in the future, a way to stop the aging process, at the present the best you can do is be proactive. A lifestyle that includes a nutritious diet, exercise and keeping your mind active may also help you slow the aging process. Also, supplements with ingredients shown to have an impact on problems such as heart disease and cancer are worth taking a look at to help shield you from old age. Our Resveratrol supplement is a high-quality product that does contain anti-aging benefits. Stay as healthy as possible by taking an active role in your own health today.