For years I have been telling my clients to wear sunscreen to help protect their skin from damaging UV rays.
Although we know that UV rays accelerate the ageing process and cause lines and wrinkles, what most people don’t know is that staying out of the sun and wearing sunscreen on a daily basis isn’t enough.

We need to start looking more closely at our diets and being mindful of our sugar intake, not just because of the calories and the risk of weight gain, but because sugar is aging our skin.
A natural process known as glycation is where sugar in your bloodstream attaches to proteins to form harmful new molecules known as advanced glycation end products or AGEs for short.

The more sugar you eat the more of these AGEs are produced in your body.
This is bad news because the body does not recognise AGEs as normal and will produce antibodies that in turn cause inflammation in the skin.

They also cause protein to become stiff and malformed, the proteins in skin that are affected are the collagen and elastin proteins, the same ones that are responsible for keeping our skin looking fresh and youthful.
The effects of glycation on the skin are loss of elasticity, compromised barrier function, accelerated aging, sensitivity and skin that looks and feels less supple.

Sugar is in all foods, even whole grains and vegetables turn to glucose when digested. The key here is to limit added sugar, watch on food labels for added sugar and avoid refined sugars.
Taking a vitamin supplement that contains Vitamin B6 and B1 will help. Eat more antioxidant rich foods such as blueberries, nuts, broccoli, garlic and green tea.

Dark chocolate is full of antioxidants and tends to have less sugar in it than milk chocolate, go for 70% plus. Glycation is a powerful promotion of the ageing process so exercise is another way to avoid sugar from hanging about our systems for too long.

When it comes to what you should be putting on your skin topically you should be looking for products that contain vitamin c as it is a great anti inflammatory. Image skin care Intensive Vital C moisturiser is ideal. https://www.akina.ie/product/vital-c-hydrating-repair-cream/

Wearing SPF daily is very important as it gives your skin that extra layer of protection from the elements. Using a product such as Environs AVST will increase the Vitamin A levels in your skin and Vit A is important in helping to build collagen. https://www.akina.ie/product/avst-1/

Making better choices will help to slow down this natural process, its about being aware of how the choices that you make affect the speed at which you age.