by Tim Mount, CN, CCMH
Youthful skin has always been in. There is evidence that as long ago as 3500BC women have been putting lotion on their skin in hopes of slowing the aging process. In modern times, a multi-billion dollar skincare industry thrives, boasting celebrity endorsers and prime time commercials.
Until relatively recently the idea of using food or supplements for skincare was a foreign concept. Most of us instinctively know that what we put in our mouth has some effect on our skin, but unless there is an immediate allergic reaction, the results are difficult to put our fingers on.
Fortunately, over the past few decades the scientific community has discovered ground breaking supplements that were never before possible. The field of chemistry has shed light on microscopic molecular bonds that affect the bioavailability of nutrients. The field of internal medicine has investigated the digestion and absorption process of our intestines. Internet connectivity has provided a worldwide forum to share these discoveries and the development of global commerce has made new and exciting ingredients available to the public.
As an increasing body of research develops, a consensus is growing among the scientific community that modern supplements may in fact be more effective to skin health than topical lotions.
Short Term vs. Long Term Benefits
While lotions and serums have quick, noticeable benefits, a fundamental problem exists when these products are applied to the surface of the skin. The skin’s main job is to protect us from the outside world – mainly from bacteria and viruses, which are extremely small. Therefore, the skin has developed a thin barrier called the epidermis that is nearly impossible to penetrate, even by the tiniest of molecules.
Although topical lotions can help to smooth and hydrate the surface of the skin for a quick, superficial benefit, the products aren’t able to penetrate to the deeper levels of the skin. Once the product is washed off or evaporates the benefit is gone.
The only way to truly grow healthier skin is to bypass the protective epidermis by taking supplements. As funny as it sounds, in medicine we think of the mouth, stomach and intestines as the outside of the body. Our digestive tract is basically a hollow tube that runs in the middle of our bodies. Its “external” barrier, unlike the barrier of the skin, is designed to let certain nutrients pass through and keep other foreign invaders out, such as bacteria and viruses.
Because of this more sophisticated filtering process, scientists have discovered how to sneak supplements past the doorman and get them into our bodies. For example, large molecules like a collagen protein, which in its natural form is too big to pass through the intestines, can be put through a natural enzyme process called “hydrolyzation”, which allows it to enter our bodies.
This type of supplement couldn’t have existed in the 1950s because internal medicine was still in its infancy. Nowadays bioavailability studies are being published at a record pace because we’ve finally figured out how to effectively get supplements past our digestive barrier. Scientists can then track these supplements to see if they are of benefit to the skin.
The “Gradual Disconnect”
We live in a society of 8 second videos and instant news reports on Twitter. If we don’t immediately like something we simply change the channel or click on another website. Even popular “lose weight fast” diets are favored over steady, sustainable dietary lifestyle changes.
This problem exists for skincare as well. Although topical lotions only provide a fleeting benefit, at least we can notice an instant result, even if it only lasts a few hours. Conversely, taking a collagen supplement may take a month before a benefit is visible.
Think about how long a cut takes to heal. A few weeks, right? Rebuilding a tissue like the skin takes time. A gradual change in the skin is much less noticeable on a day-to-day basis, especially since we see ourselves in the mirror all the time. The difference in our skin from 8am to 10pm during the same day is imperceptible, but the change from the 1st of the month to the 30th is striking!
It’s the gradual nature of supplements that often causes a disconnect. Science may be able to prove that after 30 days wrinkles may be significantly reduced, but unless we have the patience to allow our bodies to rebuild, we may never see the results.
What goes up, must come down. To expand on that idea – the rate at which something goes up determines how fast it comes down. Throw a ball in the air and it will land with the same speed as when you threw it. Similarly, a lotion may provide instant benefits, but it fades just as quickly. A collagen supplement may build gradually, but the benefits literally become a part of you! Your skin doesn’t suddenly shrivel up if you forget to take your NeoCell Collagen that morning, your body has been building more youthful skin for months…and those benefits stay with you for just as long!
To obtain perpetually youthful skin a supplement is the only way to go. Skin lotions are still an important part of your daily beauty routine, but your priority list should begin with NeoCell Collagen so you can build your beauty from the inside out!