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October 25, 2016

// Skin Care

Is Eating Candy Bad For Your Skin?

With Halloween now just a few short days away, many youngsters across Canada are preparing themselves for the annual trick-or-treating festivities. Parents are getting ready as well. It’s their job, not only to safely escort their children from home to home in order to attain pieces of candy, but to inspect said candy post trick-or-treating excursion. And let’s be honest. We adults love candy just about as much as our children do! Our inspections often lead to the holding of candy for ourselves.

But is candy really that bad for you? Well, we all know that the sugar content in candy is through the roof and, as a result, it is bad for our teeth. Naturally, we all tell our children that only a couple of pieces per day are acceptable as there really isn’t much nutritional value to candy. We know that the more sugar one consumes, the more likely he or she is to develop negative health issues like obesity and diabetes. But, believe it or not, the consumption of candy is also bad for your skin.

How is candy bad for your skin? Rebecca Adams of The Huffington Post explains that the body breaks down sugar and high-glycemic foods into glucose, which raises insulin levels. This leads to what dermatologist, Dr. Nicholas Perricone refers to as a “burst of inflammation throughout the body.” This inflammation produces enzymes that work to break down collagen and elastin. The result is sagging skin and wrinkles.

“Sugar basically attacks the healthy, supple collagen in your skin that keeps your skin wrinkle free,” explains Heather Williams on AllWomensTalk.com, “Sugar basically ‘eats’ the collagen, so to speak, on a cellular level, which leads to dehydrated, dull-looking skin. When your collagen levels are depleted, wrinkles occur.”

“Digested sugar permanently attaches to the collagen in your skin through a process known as glycation,” elaborates Adams, “Aside from increasing the effects of aging, glycation can also exacerbate skin conditions like acne and rosacea. Plus, the more sugar you eat, the more likely it is you’ll develop insulin resistance, which can manifest as excess hair growth (hirsutism) and dark patches on the neck and in body creases.”

What foods should be avoided to promote healthier skin? Adams describes simple carbohydrates as “your skin’s enemy”. She highly advises the avoidance of proinflammatory or high-glycemic foods as well as those that are high in saturated fats. They include white bread, fried food, ice cream, fruit juice, pasta, ketchup, cream cheese, jam, pizza, soda and you guessed it, candy.

What foods should be eaten to promote healthier skin? Not surprisingly, it is recommended that anti-inflammatory foods that contain healthy fats are consumed. They include avocados. Lean protein such as salmon, high-fibre foods like broccoli and cauliflower and low-glycemic options like beans, nuts and whole grains are also good for your skin. Adams also points out that complex carbs like brown rice and vegetables break down into glucose at slower rates and therefore, do not spike insulin levels. So they’re okay.

But what sweet foods are good for your skin? When wanting satisfy that sweet tooth, it’s best to opt for fruits that are rich in antioxidants like blueberries, raspberries, strawberries, cranberries and prunes. “Without antioxidants in our diet, we increase our susceptibility to cancer cells and premature aging,” says Lizette Borelli on MedicalDaily.com.

At the Aurora Medical Laser & Vein Centre, we offer a number of high quality solutions to the signs of aging. Our Botox, Juvéderm and Thermage treatments work wonders in the world of smoothing away facial lines and wrinkles. To learn more about which treatment is right for you, please don’t hesitate to call us at 403-358-5818 or email info@auroralaser.net.

October 18, 2016

// Skin Care

5 Skin Protection Measures To Take In Cold Weather

Here we are, already in the middle of October, and the cold weather is officially upon us. Although it may not exactly be wintery all over Canada just yet, here in Alberta, we can certainly feel the effects of the coldest season of the year. Contrary to popular belief, however, it’s not time to put away the sunscreen. Cold weather conditions can wreak havoc on our skin, and believe it or not, sunscreen can help.

“Even when it’s cold outside, the sun still shines brightly,” Megan Boyle reminds us on HealthyChild.org, “Although your risk of sunburn is lower in winter, the sun’s skin-damaging ultraviolet rays reflect off snow and water, increasing your exposure.” With this in mind, it’s important to remember that there are just as many – if not, more – skin protection measures for us to take during the coldest days of the year.

Here are five more:

1. Moisturize your skin. Cold weather conditions promote dry skin and chapped lips. It’s important to moisturize your skin with fragrance-free lotions to keep it protected from the elements. “Apply lotion while your skin is moist and skip bubble bath, which dries skin,” advises Boyle, “For children and people with sensitive or particularly dry skin, the best bet is to use natural oils such as coconut or canola instead of lotion. Check with your doctor before applying oils to infants.”

2. Exfoliate your skin. As wise as it is to keep your skin moisturized, you’ll want to ensure that you’re not clogging your pores. To remove dead skin cells and improve our skin’s natural complexion, you’ll want to exfoliate at least every other day. “If you have sensitive skin, pick up a gentle face scrub to use throughout the week or speak to someone at your beauty counter to help pair a product with your skin type,” writes Anne Donahue on CanadianLiving.com.

3. Apply lip balm. When applying our moisturizers and sunscreen, we often forget about our lips. It’s a part of our bodies that is almost always exposed to the elements. So it’s important to protect it from chapping, cracking and/or burning. Be sure to walk with some lip balm wherever you go during the cold months of the year. “Try non-petroleum balms made from natural oils and avoid products that list retinyl palmitate or retinyl acetate on the label,” suggests Boyle.

4. Avoid taking long showers. Taking a long hot shower can be especially pleasing during the coldest months of the year. But, believe it or not, they only serve to dry out your skin which leaves it more susceptible to damage. “As luxurious as steamy showers can be in the colder months, heat can dry out your skin and leave it susceptible to outdoor damage,” informs Donahue.

5. Stay hydrated and eat a nutritious diet. Needless to say, the drinking of water and eating of fruits and veggies provide numerous health benefits. And they include keeping your skin protected. “What you do and do not eat also has a huge effect on the way your skin looks, so to protect your skin before winter hits, drink lots of water and keep nutrients high by loading up on vegetables and healthy fats,” says Donahue.

At the Aurora Medical Laser & Vein Centre, we fully understand the importance of being able to sustain your skin’s natural beauty. If you’re looking to revive and restore your sun damaged skin, we offer a variety of facial peels that will tighten your skin and increase its radiance. We also offer IPL treatments to remedy a number of skin imperfections including rosacea, facial veins and large pores.

For more information, please don’t hesitate to call the Aurora Medical Laser & Vein Centre at 403-358-5818 or email info@auroralaser.net.

October 12, 2016

// Skin Care

5 Superfoods That Ward Off The Signs Of Aging

Aging is inevitable. And if we’re fortunate, we’ll be able to age for a very long time. Although many of us cringe whenever another birthday rolls around, the truth is that we should be incredibly grateful for every year of life that we get. The main problem with aging, most of us seem to believe, is that with every passing year, our faces seem to gain new wrinkles. There’s not a whole lot we can do about it. Or is there?

When it comes to ways of maintaining optimal health, a nutritious diet will always top the list. The same can be said about warding off the signs of aging. If you’re happy to enjoy the process of aging (as we all should), but would much prefer to look years younger than the date on your photo identification would indicate, then you may want to indulge in some vitamin-rich superfoods.

There are many superfoods that help to ward off the signs of aging. Here are five:

1. Blueberries. It should probably come as no surprise that we’ve decided to place these great sources of antioxidants at the top of our list. Blueberries are widely known to have “great anti-inflammatory properties”, according to OrganicAuthority.com, “Remember, inflammation is not just linked to disease – it is a major cause of wrinkling and sagging in the skin,” says the website, “Blueberries also increase brain power, restore balance and improve memory.”

2. Garlic. Allicin, which is the component of garlic that gives it its strong smell and flavour, is a very effective antioxidant. “As allicin digests in your body it produces sulfenic acid, a compound that reacts faster with dangerous free radicals than any other known compound,” reports TheScienceOfEating.com, “Garlic is also a triple threat against infections due to its antibacterial, antiviral and antifungal properties.”

3. Wild Alaskan Salmon. This and other cold water fish such as sardines, herring and trout are great sources of protein, which is important for maintaining and repairing the body. This includes skin on a cellular level. These fish are also “high anti-inflammatory omega 3 essential fatty acids which keeps skin radiant, supple and wrinkle free, moods upbeat and brain functioning at optimal levels,” says OrganicAuthority.com.

4. Lemons. Perhaps, not surprisingly, the citrus fruit most associated with “freshness” and “cleanliness” is very rich in antioxidants. Lemons help to prevent free radical damage responsible for the premature aging of your skin, says TheScienceOfEating.com. “Vitamin C helps to maintain your skin’s elasticity to prevent the formation of wrinkles and decrease blemishes,” informs the website.

5. Beans and lentils. Both high in fibre and low in sugar, beans and lentils are incredible anti-inflammatory foods. According to OrganicAuthority.com, they keep blood sugar stable, which prevents dull, dry, wrinkled and sagging skin. “When it comes to maintaining beautiful skin and keeping unwanted pounds at bay, beans and lentils are a body’s best friend,” reports the site, “The reason is because they are very low-glycemic.”

While the team, here at the Aurora Medical Laser & Vein Centre, always advocates for healthy lifestyles in order to diminish the signs of aging, we know that there are so many Canadians who could use a little extra help in warding them off. We proudly offer Soft Lift by Juvéderm which is a dermal filler with a cosmetic injectable that instantly refreshes your look in a single treatment!

For more information, please don’t hesitate to call the Aurora Medical Laser & Vein Centre at 403-358-5818 or email info@auroralaser.net.

October 4, 2016

// Skin Care

Is Wearing Makeup Bad For Your Skin?

With Halloween coming up at the end of the month, people all over Canada are considering the costumes that they plan on wearing at parties and for trick or treating adventures with their little ones. In many cases, costume-wearers will be donning makeup on their faces to truly magnify their illustrious renditions of Dracula, Frankenstein or any other of the many different ghoulish appearances that are popular these days.

And while it’s true that wearing a lot of makeup isn’t exactly all that healthy for your skin, Halloween does only come once a year. Then again, there are many of us who wear makeup on a daily basis. Let’s be honest, ladies. No, we’re not trying to recreate monster movies with the makeup we put on our faces each day – but the fact that we use makeup so regularly can sometimes produce monster-like results!

What type of skin damage can be caused by makeup? For the most part, makeup wearers don’t notice any major impacts to their skin. However, there are a number of people who do experience some allergic reactions to many of the common ingredients found in cosmetic products. On HowStuffWorks.com, Sarah Siddons explains that there are two different types of reactions to such ingredients.

“These reactions can come in two types: irritant contact dermatitis, which is an itching or burning reaction to a product irritating the skin, and allergic contact dermatitis, which is more of a ‘true’ allergy to specific ingredients that results in swelling, itching, or blisters,” she writes, citing the American Academy of Dermatology as a source, “Both of these types of reactions are most commonly caused by things like fragrances or preservatives in makeup and other skin care products.”

Can makeup cause acne? According to Siddons, acne can be caused by certain oils that are found in many cosmetics. Acne cosmetica, she describes, is a mild, common form of the condition that is characterized by blocked pores and red bumps on the chin, cheeks and forehead. “Acne cosmetica occurs when oils from your makeup collect in and clog your pores, so thick liquid or cream products are more often culprits than are lighter products like powders,” she explains.

How can such reactions be avoided? Firstly, it’s important to apply the right type of makeup to your face. In other words, products that are fragrance and oil free will help you to protect your skin from the irritants that can cause reactions. Hypoallergenic products are a lot less likely to produce allergic reactions, noncomedogneic products won’t blog your pores and nonacnegenic products won’t cause acne, informs Siddons.

It’s also important to not wear makeup to bed. It’s wise to make it a habit to thoroughly wash all of the makeup off of your face before turning in for the night. “Falling asleep with your makeup on can lead to bacterial infections and clogged pores, which can cause acne,” reveals Bethany Verdone on GoodHousekeeping.com, “And the residue that stays on your pillow can even make you sick.”

At the Aurora Medical Laser & Vein Centre, we offer ExcellaDerm Microdermabrasion and a variety of facial peels that help to control and minimize acne as well as remedy sun-damaged skin, age spots, fine lines and wrinkles. We also offer Intense Pulsed Light Photo Rejuvenation (IPL) treatments that also treat a number of skin imperfections. Click HERE to learn more or better yet, don’t hesitate to call the Aurora Medical Laser & Vein Centre at 403-358-5818 or email info@auroralaser.net.