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Healthy Habits That Are Proven To Make You Look Younger

Experts reveal 12 healthy habits that can slow down the aging process. 
FACT CHECKED BY Alek Korab

While there's no magic trick or pill that can make you look younger, there are several healthy habits that can help maintain a youthful appearance if done consistently. Small daily habits can absolutely give you a younger look and Dr. Steve Hruby, a Doctor of Chiropractic and founder at Kaizen Progressive Health reminds us, "Aging is a normal and wonderful part of life. We grow smarter, more experienced, and more distinct as individuals as we age, and we believe this is something to be proud of." Eat This, Not That! Health spoke with experts who reveal what their secrets are to keeping a radiant young look. However, aging gracefully is beautiful and no matter what stage in life you're at, being happy and healthy is what really matters. Read on—and to ensure your health and the health of others, don't miss these Sure Signs You've Already Had COVID.

1

Switching From Coffee To Green Tea

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Dr. Hruby shares, "We all love a good cup of coffee in the morning, but drinking too much in order to burn the candle at both ends might be bad for our skin! The more coffee we consume, the more dehydrated our bodies become (and we've already discussed the significance of water for a young glow!) Furthermore, it has a significant impact on our sleep quality, which is another important aspect in maintaining youthful appearance! Green tea, on the other hand, is high in antioxidants and enzymes that help to eliminate wrinkles by preserving the skin against the breakdown of collagen and elastin, as well as minimizing UV damage! Green tea is also an excellent substitute because it allows you to retain more moisture than coffee while also providing a small energy boost when you need it!"

2

Reduce Your Salt And Sugar Intake

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Dr. Hruby says, "I believe most of us can agree that we consume far too much salt and sugar in our daily lives. Doctors have a variety of reasons why we should limit our sugar intake, but one of the most important is that sugar triggers a process called glycation, which can make us look younger. Glycation causes us to lose skin suppleness and decreases the efficiency of collagen and other proteins that help to keep our skin looking young. Too much salt can also be harmful because it dehydrates our cells naturally when we ingest more and more of it. As previously said, when our skin cells become dehydrated, our skin becomes more wrinkled and dull, causing us to age. We advocate lowering your salt and sugar intake and observing the consequences for yourself!"

3

Your Diet Matters

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Dana Ellis Hunnes PhD, MPH, RD is a senior dietitian at UCLA medical center, assistant professor at UCLA Fielding school of public health, and author with Cambridge university Press, of the new book, RECIPE FOR SURVIVAL explains, "Primarily plant forward diets, Mediterranean style diets, that are high in healthy plant fats –  monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fats can help keep us looking younger because of the antioxidants, vitamins, minerals, healthy anti-inflammatory fats, and high water content." 

Dr. Hruby adds, "You don't need us to remind you that eating a nutritious diet is critical to feeling your best! By that logic, if it has you feeling your best, it must also be able to help you look your best! Vegetables are incredibly nutrient dense for their low calorie content, and many of them include antioxidants that can help prevent heart disease and cataracts (which your chance of developing naturally increases with age). Pumpkins, carrots, and sweet potatoes are strong in beta carotene, a pigment that protects us from free radicals and UV radiation from the sun, two factors that age our skin. Finally, in terms of hydration, did you know that you may meet a considerable portion of your daily water requirement simply by eating fruits and vegetables? We already know how crucial hydration is for cell health, so getting more of it by eating high-water-content food is always a good idea. Watermelon, cucumber, and lettuce are all excellent sources of water, so aim to include as many as possible in your diet and follow the rainbow diet whenever possible!"

4

Red Wine

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Hunnes reveals,  "Red wine in moderation, meaning up to one serving per day for women and up to two servings per day for men have been associated with longer lived people, and may help keep skin looking better. But, smaller doses are much better! It could be the anthocyanins, the resveratrol or other antioxidants."

5

Quit Smoking

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Dr. Karan Lal of Schweiger Dermatology Group in Hackensack, NJ says, "Stop smoking! Smoking not only increases your risk of lung cancer but it also contributes to aging. Smoking degrades collagen and elastin,proteins which are essential for maintaining youthful skin."

6

Use a Topical Retinoid

 

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According to Dr. Lal, "Topical retinoids have many benefits including increasing cell turnover, stimulating collagen, reducing hyperpigmentation, and more! If you are naive to this, start by using your topical retinoid 2-3x a week because you may experience dryness. Once your skin has become tolerant of the retinoid, work up to using it every night. It will make your skin brighter and will hopefully reduce your risk of developing fine lines."

7

Wear a Serum With Vitamin C

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Dr. Lilliana Ramírez García MD with  Nava MD™ shares, "Vitamin C is a potent antioxidant. It helps combat free radicals and solar damage. Also, vitamin C stimulates the production of collagen, the protein that gives your skin structure and elasticity. For that reason, using a Vitamin C serum can help prevent the formulation of fine lines, wrinkles, and loose, sagging skin."

8

Massage Your Face

Young woman doing face building yoga facial gymnastics self massage and rejuvenating exercises
Dr. García says, "Giving yourself daily facial massages can do wonders for the tone and texture of your skin. They relieve tension in your face, making it less susceptible to wrinkling. Facial massages can promote circulation to give skin a firmer, more vibrant appearance overall. There are countless facial massage techniques to choose from. Do a quick online search for inspiration, and have fun crafting your own routine. Here's a facial massage technique that's good for firming and toning your jawline. Bend your index and middle fingers. Then, glide your fingers along your jawline, from your chin up to the bottom of your ears. Repeat this move five times, using a fluid, sweeping motion."

9

Drink Tons of Water

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According to Dr. García, "Dehydration can affect your skin's elasticity – the ability to stretch and return to its original shape. To maintain your skin's natural elasticity, and keep unwanted wrinkles at bay, drinking water is extremely important. While every person's ideal water intake is different, research shows most women should be drinking at least 3 liters of water every day."

10

Wear Sunscreen


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"As you probably already know, UV rays from the sun are the main main causes of wrinkles and other signs of aging," reminds us. "Protect your skin by wearing sunscreen with an SPF 30 or higher (even on days when it isn't super sunny out) and reapply throughout the day. While I recommend using a cream or liquid formula for everyday use, powder sunscreens can be great for touch-ups throughout the day."

Dr. Lal adds, "This sounds simple but very few people wear sunscreen everyday. The sun emits UV radiation, whether it is sunny, raining, or snowing. Sunscreen is a shield for your skin. It is a simple thing you can do to reduce your risk of skin cancer and fight aging. You want to make sure you apply a broad spectrum sunscreen at least SPF 30 everyday to your face,ears, and neck."

11

Reduce Stress by Meditation

It's well known that stress causes major health issues like heart disease, obesity, depression, diabetes and more. But it also can age you quicker and cause wrinkles, according to the National Library of Medicine. Kent Probst, personal trainer, kinesiotherapist and bodybuilder with Long Healthy Life explains, "Meditation is often practiced around the world for stress reduction and relaxation, but in addition meditation has other benefits as well. Evidence exists that demonstrates a wide range of benefits for those who meditate regularly.  Meditation may help with the following:

  • Pain reduction
  • Hypertension
  • Irritable Bowel Syndrome
  • Ulcerative Colitis
  • Smoking Cessation
  • Depression
  • Anxiety
  • Insomnia"

12

Use A Moisturizer Daily

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Probst says, "Since your skin tends to dry out with age, hydration is imperative.  A moisturizer that encourages collagen regeneration will have your skin singing your praises.  Retinyl palmitate will promote renewal of skin cells.  Your moisturizer should have ingredients that block free radicals and enhance DNA health.  Apply a moisturizer early in the day and at bedtime.  Ingredients to look for in your moisturizer are retinoids, vitamin C, hydroxy acids, CoQ10, peptides, tea extracts, grape seed extract, niacinamide.  All of these ingredients have demonstrated some clinical effectiveness in promoting youthful skin."

 

Heather Newgen
Heather Newgen has two decades of experience reporting and writing about health, fitness, entertainment and travel. Heather currently freelances for several publications. Read more about Heather
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