Regular skin checks and care
If you have a congenital pigmented spot on the skin, such as moles, it is important to check monthly for any changes in its asymmetry, like irregular border or uneven colour, as well as any changes in size or diameter of the mole. As these changes may indicate a melanoma, which is the most serious type of skin cancer. Normally, most melanomas are at least 6mm. If you are unsure and have any doubts see your local doctor immediately.
It is essential to wear sunscreen with SPF (Sun Protection Factor) 15 or above on a daily basis during the summer and spring months in order to protect the skin from UVA (ultraviolet light, type A). These are rays of light from the sun, which are not visible but can cause damage to the skin. Including cancer, premature ageing and long-term damage. This is because UVA affects the structural components of the skin cells such as collagen and elastin.
Having an exfoliation massage also helps to keep the skin in good condition, as it can help to regenerate the skin and boost circulation, carrying more nutrients to the skin cells.
Daily physical exercise helps to improve skin condition, keeping the skin healthy, as when you exercise the skin cells absorb more oxygen and nutrients. This helps to firm and nourish the skin, also improving sleep and relieving stress, which benefits the skin too. Frequent exercise also helps to get rid of the body’s toxins by working the lymphatic system, which carries nutrients to the cells and takes the waste products away. As the lymphatic system relies on physical exercise to move, without proper exercise the skin cells does not get enough nutrients and cannot get rid of their own waste product, which can contribute to cancer and arthritis. Vigorous exercise improves the lymphatic flow in the body and consequently benefits the skin.
The skin needs a good healthy diet in order to absorb all the nutrients it needs to maintain healthy. A balanced combination of minerals and vitamins can help improve the appearance of the skin and protect it from some diseases.
As part of a balanced diet vitamin A is an important nutrient to keep the skin healthy, helping to maintain and develop skin cells. It strengthens the immune system and its antioxidant properties help to protect against cancer and other diseases. It also helps to prevent wrinkles making the skin look young, protects the skin from pollution and infections. Vitamin A can be found in milk, cheese, butter, eggs, spinach, broccoli and carrot.
The complex of vitamin B helps to maintain skin cells and the deficiency of vitamin B2 & B6 can lead to skin disorder. A balanced diet can provide all the vitamin B the body needs through wholemeal bread, green leafy vegetables, oats and fortified cereals.
Vitamin C is also good for the skin as its anti-oxidant properties help to protect the skin from free-radical attacks, which damage the skin cells. It also protects the skin against ultra violet light and the negative effects of the atmosphere. Vitamin C can help to slow down ageing, as when absorbed into the skin cells it gives some sun protection due to its anti photo ageing properties, although it is no substitute for sunscreen. Vitamin C also helps with the formation of elastin and helps to improve the production of collagen, helping to reduce the appearance of wrinkles on the skin. Vitamin C can be found on citrus fruits, strawberries, peppers, guava, spring greens, papaya and Brussels sprouts.
Vitamin E also has some powerful antioxidant properties defending the skin from the effects of free radicals, violet light and pollution. Vitamin E helps to prevent skin cancer as it helps to protect the skin cells from the damages of sunlight due to its antioxidant properties. Foods containing vitamin E are: sunflower oil, hazelnuts, almonds, sun-dried tomatoes and cod liver oil.
Essential fatty acids help to replace the skin and protect it from some skin disorders like eczema, dry skin and psoriasis. It can be found in oily fish, sunflower seeds and rapeseed oil.
Drink plenty of water and eat water-rich foods, such as apples, tomatoes, lettuce, celery and melons as they hydrate and moisturise the skin from the inside out helping to clear up the skin giving a natural healthy glow.