Beauty From the Inside Out

by | Jan 11, 2012 | Spirit-Led Living

woman-cosmeticsYou’ll need more than
cosmetics for great-looking skin and a lovely appearance. You’ll need to
understand the health and beauty connection.

Beauty
truly does radiate from within. A healthy, vibrant woman defies age. As
a testimony and reflection of our self-esteem, inner beauty and
vibrancy, true beauty is the result of inner vitality, balance, health
and happiness, not vanity.

Optimal
nutrition, stress-relieving exercise and a positive frame of mind are
requirements you must tote along on your continued journey toward
complete balance. A balanced body and a beautiful spirit are better than
the very best cosmetic application or surgery.

With
proper nutrition, rest, relaxation and exercise, you can keep your body
balanced, healthy and youthful throughout your entire life. Your skin
can be wrinkle-free and elastic, your eyes can sparkle, your complexion
can be smooth, and your face can be firm and tight.

When
it comes to aging, there are two choices: you either embrace it, or you
try to erase it with cosmetic procedures. However, you can begin
feeling and looking better-and younger-if you’re willing to make simple
lifestyle changes and adjust your health and beauty regimen.

SKIN SINS
Your
appearance will start changing for the better soon after you begin
eliminating these harmful habits that are taking a toll on your skin and
overall well-being:

Sun exposure.
Nothing ages you faster and is more damaging to your skin than sun
exposure. However, you can prevent sun damage by wearing sunscreen
whenever you leave the house.

You
should wear at least SPF-15. Wear SPF-30 if you are a golfer, or if you
spend time at the beach. Sunscreen not only protects you from future
sun damage, it can also help reverse past damage because, with
protection, your skin gets a chance to repair itself. If possible, stay
covered or out of the sun completely between the hours of 11 a.m. and 3
p.m.

Lack of sleep.
I consider sleep to be the best beauty vitamin in the entire world.
Nighttime is when your body repairs itself. This includes your skin.
Collagen and elastin are replaced and new cells are built, thereby
erasing the previous day’s exposure to sun and environmental toxins.

Your
skin is more absorbent and receptive at night, so it is a perfect time
to moisturize and add topical vitamin treatments. Lack of sleep will cut
these benefits, leaving you with dark circles, puffiness, sallowness
and even pimples.

Stress
increases the levels of adrenal hormones, such as testosterone, which
can trigger acne. Stress hormones can also cause your blood flow to be
directed away from your limbs and major organs, leaving your skin crying
out for the nutrients it needs.

When
you are stressed, it is harder to repair your complexion with skin
care. Stressed skin simply does not respond to treatments as well as
relaxed skin. Practice deep breathing, exercise and/or take a tub bath
with lavender essential oils to help de-stress your body, mind and
spirit.

Lack of exercise. Exercise
boosts oxygen in your blood and in turn improves your skin tone.
Exercise also increases your tolerance to stress and helps you sleep,
which will boost your skin health as well. For optimal skin health, try
to do three sets of 20 minutes of exercise each week. Try cycling,
walking at a good pace, swimming and running, if your joints are
healthy.

Caffeine.
Every cup of coffee you drink needs three cups of water to process
through your system. Caffeine is very dehydrating to the skin. In
addition, it increases your level of stress hormones, which can lead to
poor skin health.

Smoking
is the second most damaging thing you can do to your skin, second only
to sun exposure. The nicotine found in cigarettes constricts the blood
vessels in your face, making your skin look gray or sallow.

A
chemical in cigarettes, acetaldehyde, attacks the fiber in your skin
that holds it together. Factor in the constant creasing and wrinkling of
the eyes due to smoke irritation and the pursing of your lips, and you
have all the ingredients for looking 10 years older than women who do
not smoke. The good news is that quitting before the age of 30 returns
your body to the level of a nonsmoker within 10 years-and that includes
your skin.

Alcohol
dilates blood vessels, leading to broken veins. Like cigarettes,
alcohol also contains acetaldehyde, which attacks skin fibers and
reduces elasticity and firmness. In addition, alcohol robs the body of
vitamin C, a key nutrient for healthy skin.

MORE THAN MEETS THE EYE
In
today’s world, the skin care and cosmetic surgery industry is booming
and has become one of the largest, most profitable industries in
America. Like women before us, we are on a constant search for the
latest and greatest botanical, liposomal, antioxidant, exfoliant or
hydrator in the world to make us appear more beautiful with skin that is
visibly younger and smoother.

The
fact remains that even in our advanced generation, beautiful skin is so
much more than skin deep. Yes, there are lunchtime peels,
microdermabrasion, laser resurfacing, and other techniques to smooth and
erase fine lines, but it is an undeniable fact that beautiful skin is
still the result of a healthy, toxin-free body.

When
we are young, our skin is soft, supple and glowing. Beautiful skin
comes naturally in our youth. But, as we age, beautiful skin is a reward
for taking proper care of our bodies. The skin is a barometer that
reflects what is going on with us internally. Skin care is big business
these days as baby boomers anxiously take part in staving off the signs
of aging.

Stress, excessive
sun exposure, liver malfunction, hormone depletion, smoking, alcohol,
sugar, fried foods, caffeine and poor circulation all contribute to the
condition of our skin. Age spots, wrinkles, dry skin, uneven skin tone,
sallow complexion and acne are the result of how well our systems handle
wastes.

For healthy, glowing skin, the following simple practices will greatly benefit you:

SKIN CARE THERAPY
• Drink eight to 10 glasses of water each day.
• Add fresh lemon for added benefit.

Make a fresh “liver cocktail” each day (use a juicer). The juice
consists of 2 ounces of beet juice, 3 ounces of carrot juice and 3
ounces of cucumber juice.
• Avoid sugars, caffeine and red meat to prevent dehydration.
• Eat fresh fruit and vegetables each day; fruits are wonderful cleaners.

BODY THERAPY
• Reduce or prevent wrinkles by rubbing papaya skins on the face. (Papain is an enzyme that exfoliates the skin.)
• Manage stress.
• Practice deep breathing.
• Have a massage with almond oil, sesame oil or wheat germ oil to soften the skin.
• Moisturize immediately after bathing.
• Rub lemon juice on age spots or use 2 percent hydroquinone topical cream to reduce and fade age spots.
• Limit sun exposure and always use a sunblock SPF-15 or more to prevent further damage and to prevent age spots from darkening.

IT’S A BEAUTIFUL LIFE True
beauty comes from the inner woman-her essence, her spirit. A truly
beautiful woman possesses a radiance that cannot be duplicated by the
most skilled plastic surgeon or the most expensive topical beauty serum.

People
naturally gravitate toward beauty. Think of nature-how we all are drawn
to pick a beautiful flower, or to at least pause to smell and admire
the beauty of a fragrant rose. We are drawn because we instinctively
know that flowers are beautiful inside and out. We pick them not only
for their visual beauty, but also for their sweet essence. And so it
goes for woman. True beauty comes from our very essence.

The
Bible tells us: “Do not let your adornment be merely outward-arranging
the hair, wearing gold, or putting on fine apparel-rather let it be the
hidden person of the heart, with the incorruptible beauty of a gentle
and quiet spirit, which is very precious in the sight of God” (1 Pet.
3:3-4, NKJV).

The most
beautiful woman I have ever known had an essence that drew men and women
alike. Although her outward appearance would never suggest that she had
such magnetism, her essence captured the hearts of those around her.

She
was loyal, confident, strong, unselfish, dependable, unassuming,
loving, a best friend, humorous, humble and gentle. She gave of herself,
never sought approval, and she had faith and a sense of her true worth.

The
beauty guidelines I have given you focus mainly on the outward
appearance. But in order to experience beauty throughout your lifetime,
you must cultivate it from within. Let it flow through you each day.

Live
a beautiful life-let beauty radiate from your body, mind and spirit.
Physical beauty is only skin deep and fades with the passing of time.
But true beauty comes from your core and leaves a lasting impression.

Janet Maccaro, Ph.D, CNC, is a respected lecturer and the author of several books on health and nutrition. Her most recent release is 100 Answers to 100 Questions About How to Live Longer (Christian Life).

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