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    If you’re looking for some great tips for youthful skin, you’ve come to the right place. While anti-aging products may certainly help you maintain younger-looking skin, there are some other great anti-aging tips to be aware of.

    When it comes to keeping your skin cells healthy and avoiding unhealthy or dead skin cells, you just need to learn how to treat your skin right. And one of the most important things you can do for skin care is to apply sunscreen, right? Well… not necessarily.

    A Word About Sunscreen And Skincare

    Over the last few years, researchers have expressed a mounting concern due to a pretty large increase in studied environmental contaminants and their possible impact on the world’s ecosystem – and especially on human health.1

    Recently, a rather scary article surfaced that mentioned the ways in which certain chemical contaminants in various popular sunscreen brands can actually be absorbed into your bloodstream.2

    Moreover, there are disruptive estrogen-mimicking compounds that can sometimes be found in pretty high amounts in kids and adults who happen to use a fair amount of sunscreen.3 And the last thing you want is estrogen compounds messing with your hormonal system.

    tips for youthful skin | Gundry MDSometimes the chemicals in sunscreen can actually produce highly estrogenic compounds. And these compounds (known as benzophenone or BPs) come into direct contact with your skin when you apply sunscreen.

    BPs are ultraviolet (UV) light absorbers. They’re quite often found in personal care products like sunscreen, body lotion, moisturizer, hair spray, and shampoo. They are generally assumed to accumulate in human bodies during the summer when much of your skin (sometimes up to 75%) can be covered in sunscreen or moisturizer. And when these UV filters become absorbed by your skin, they might also enter your body.4

    Furthermore, sometimes chemicals known as alpha-hydroxy acids found in certain skincare products may actually increase UV skin sensitivity.5

    So, what can you do to avoid essentially polluting your body? Eat your sunscreen instead.

    Of course, this doesn’t mean literally squirting sunscreen into your mouth. But what you can do is make sure you’re getting the proper nutrients through diet in order to protect your skin from damage. Let’s take a look at how.

    How To Eat Your Sunscreen: Vitamin C

    tips for youthful skin | Gundry MD

    You have probably heard all about the benefits of vitamin C, so it should come as no surprise that antioxidants are one of the keys to healthy-looking skin. Some of the best kinds of protection for your skin happens from the inside out.

    That means that the compounds you eat, take, and swallow are the ones that can help protect your skin.

    Vitamin C is an essential vitamin, which means it is required for normal body function. Moreover, vitamin C is an electron donor which means it can help fight electron-stealing free radicals.6

    What Are The Best Ways To Get Your Vitamin C?

    These foods are among the best when it comes to vitamin C content – and they’re lectin-free!

    • In-season raspberries
    • In-season blueberries
    • Green bananas
    • Leafy greens
    • Swiss chard
    • Kale
    • Cruciferous vegetables
    • Carrots
    • Lemon
    • Lime7

    If the foods on the list above don’t do it for you, consider giving your skincare that essential boost by consuming extended time-release vitamin C tablets. Sugar-free chewable vitamin Cs are also great. One of the benefits vitamin C can offer is that it may help your collagen to reknit itself. Turns out, vitamin C is necessary to produce collagen.8 As a refresher, collagen is one type of protein that plays an important role in the structure of your body.9 Just make sure you get your doctor’s approval before making any changes to your diet including vitamin C supplements.

    How To Eat Your Sunscreen: Polyphenols

    Polyphenols – those wonderful dark pigments in fruits and veggies – may actually be useful when it comes to preventing sunburn and decreasing the harmful effects of UV rays on your skin.10

    Here is a list of some great, lectin-free sources of polyphenols:

    • Dark Chocolate | GundryMDRed wine (consume in moderation)
    • Dark Chocolate (opt for 72% or greater)
    • Extra virgin olive oil
    • Spinach
    • Artichoke
    • Red onion
    • Hazelnuts
    • Pecans
    • Walnuts
    • Green tea

    How To Eat Your Sunscreen: Fernblock

    fernblock | Gundry MDAnother great trick when it comes to consuming your sunscreen can be found in polypodium (or Fernblock). Fernblock is a phytochemical (a natural chemical found in plants) endowed with certain photoprotective properties, like the ability to help prevent some of the harmful effects of excessive exposure to UV rays.11

    Fernblock is an all-natural antioxidant that can be ingested orally. It inhibits the generation of free radicals and can help protect your skin’s endogenous natural antioxidant systems.12

    Furthermore, Fernblock hosts an array of benefits and shows no toxicity or allergenic properties. The substance has been shown to block the effect of UV rays when consumed.13 Ask your doctor if fernblock is right for you.

    The Secret To Youthful Skin: Consume Your Sunblock

    No matter your skin tone or skin type, try to follow these tips to keep your skin looking beautiful and young:

    1. sun protection | Gundry MDStay in the shade or wear a wide brimmed hat (this may help you avoid dark circles under the eyes, too).14
    2. Consume vitamin C.
    3. Cover your arms in longer sleeves.
    4. Consider a Fernblock supplement.
    5. Moisturize your skin with non-BP creams.
    6. If using topical sunscreen, use only non-BP products.

    These tips are great ways to try and better protect your skin from fine lines and sun damage. Sunscreen might be one step to a better skincare routine, but it should never be the only step.

    Sources
    1 https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/16690811
    2 https://www.usatoday.com/story/news/health/2019/05/08/sunscreen-seeping-into-your-blood-why-mineral-brands-may-best/1128310001/
    3 https://www.seattletimes.com/seattle-news/health/estrogen-mimicker-found-in-sunscreen
    4 https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3617139/#pone.0060567-Fenton1
    5 https://www.fda.gov/cosmetics/cosmetic-ingredients/alpha-hydroxy-acids
    6 https://www.researchgate.net/publication/10916278_Vitamin_C_as_an_Antioxidant_Evaluation_of_Its_Role_in_Disease_
    7 http://www.whfoods.com/genpage.php?tname=nutrient&dbid=109
    8 https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5579659/
    9 http://www.whfoods.com/genpage.php?tname=nutrient&dbid=109
    10 https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5037798/
    11 https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3257081/
    12 https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3257081/
    13 https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3257081/
    14 https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4924417/

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