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Tricks from Doctors About How to Look Younger For Longer

Learn how to age healthier and look younger at the same time, according to experts. 
FACT CHECKED BY Emilia Paluszek

There's a lot of pressure on women to look young for as long as possible, but aging is beautiful and as Audrey Hepburn said, "True beauty in a woman is reflected in her soul." While there's nothing we can do about aging, we can decide how to handle the process and help ensure we stay healthy throughout the journey.  Dr. Mahmud Kara, MD Internal Medicine tells us, "Aging is a natural part of life, but it does not mean that it has to be unenjoyable or riddled with health issues. There are many natural remedies that can help combat the most common side effects associated with aging and contribute to an overall sense of well-being during your "golden years". 

One natural way to approach the aging process is to have a positive outlook. Oscar-winning actress Jennifer Connelly told PEOPLE, "We equate beauty for women with youth, and that's sad. It's a shame it's so hard for so many of us to appreciate the beauty of an older woman and to accept it in ourselves… I don't want to erase my history on my face." North Dakota State University says, "Research has shown that people with positive perceptions of aging live 7.5 years longer than those who don't." In addition, people with positive perceptions of aging experience the following:

–Experience much higher rates of recovery from illness and injury

–Have better brain performance and improved memory

–Have a greater sense of control over their lives and a greater will to live

–Are more likely to talk to a doctor about health problems, get preventive care such as blood pressure screenings and flu shots, and pursue health promotion programs"

 "Examining our personal views on aging, as well as the messages we are getting around us, is important. Encourage others to join you in promoting positive perceptions of aging that can influence our physical and mental health, and even longevity," NDSU states. Diet, exercise, managing stress and getting good quality sleep are all ways to help look younger and maintain overall health, but there's other ways to stay looking youthful and healthy, according to experts Eat This, Not That! Health spoke with. Read on—and to ensure your health and the health of others, don't miss these Sure Signs You've Already Had COVID.



Making a smoothie bowl using a Ninja Foodi Power Blender & Processor System with Smoothie Bowl Maker and Nutrient Extractor
Courtesy of SharkNinja

Dr. Kara says, "The #1 supplement I would recommend to age well is Crocin (found in saffron). Saffron is a bright red herb that has been used for centuries to help with issues like low libido, depression, and poor cognitive health. One of the compounds found in saffron called crocin, which gives it the bright red color, has numerous health benefits. The first is that crocin is high in antioxidants which are important because they help combat damage at the cellular level from free radicals. Free radical damage can lead to oxidative stress on the body which in turn can lead to skin issues like dullness and wrinkles, increased inflammation, low energy levels, and difficulty with concentration and memory. When it comes to aging, people start to face the above issues, like wrinkled skin or trouble focusing, naturally but by consuming antioxidants they can start to combat those issues at the cellular level which is crucial for overall wellness. Beyond the antioxidant value, some research suggests that crocin may be considered a "natural aphrodisiac". This means that it can have a positive impact on libido and erectile dysfunction which is another health area that starts to naturally decline as people start to get older."

Lisa Richards, a nutritionist and author of the Candida Diet says, "Integrating antioxidants into your diet or supplement regimen is one of the best ways to improve the look of your skin. These plant compounds will not only give the appearance of healthier skin, but truthfully improve your skin's health. Unlike many creams and topicals on the beauty market today, antioxidants aren't giving you a temporary change that will fade if or when you stop using them. Antioxidants are naturally improving the true health of your skin. This is because they are plant compounds that give fruits and vegetables their vibrant colors and unique protection. When we consume them they give similar cellular protection to use, both inside and out. Consuming antioxidants improves the cellular health of your skin, which leads to more vibrant, supple, and wrinkle-free skin. Even better, antioxidants will give you the added bonus of overall health, reducing the risk of chronic disease, and aiding in weight loss or maintenance." 


Stop Smoking

no smoking sign

Dr. Enrizza P. Factor, a Clinical Dermatologist, emphasizes the importance of not smoking not only for health reasons, but for maintaining a youthful appearance as well. "The smoke of cigarettes represents an important accelerator of the aging process, both directly through complex mechanisms mediated prevalently by excessive formation of free radicals, and indirectly by favoring the appearance of various pathologies in which smoke is a recognized risk factor. This means that smoke compromises not only life expectancy, but also the quality of life, favoring the occurrence of non-autosufficiente. Smoking is an important risk factor for many diseases, such as cancer, cardiovascular and respiratory diseases. These are also the main causes of death in the industrialized Countries, where the habit of smoking is also largely diffused.

Non-smokers have a much higher life expectancy than smokers, and the suspension of smoking is accompanied, even in the elderly, by an increase in the survival time due to the reduction of smoke-induced biological damage.. Therefore, cigarette smoking is opposing longevity, particularly the extreme one, as it is confirmed by the observations obtained on centenarians. Among them, smoking is extremely rare, and even when it occurs among them, it is correlated almost exclusively to bad health conditions and non-autosufficiente, indicating that it compromises health status and the quality of life even in extremely long living subjects. Considering the demonstrated beneficial effects of suspension of smoking, all practitioners and geriatricians in particular, should promote the abstinence from smoking as a behavioral norm for a correct lifestyle. Non-smokers can delay the appearance of diseases and of the aging process, thus attaining longevity; further, non-smoking habits allow genetically predisposed subjects to reach the extreme longevity and maintain an acceptable health status and auto sufficiency."


Stop Eating Sugar

Coffee and Sugar Main Picture

According to a study published in the National Library of Medicine, "The effect of sugars on aging skin is governed by the simple act of covalently cross-linking two collagen fibers, which renders both of them incapable of easy repair. Glucose and fructose link the amino acids present in the collagen and elastin that support the dermis, producing advanced glycation end products or "AGEs." This process is accelerated in all body tissues when sugar is elevated and is further stimulated by ultraviolet light in the skin. The effect on vascular, renal, retinal, coronary, and cutaneous tissues is being defined, as are methods of reducing the glycation load through careful diet and use of supplements."

In an interview with Live Well Andrew Nish, MD, UnityPoint Health says, "Sugar ages us in many ways, both internally and externally, including our skin…If you put a banana out on the counter and unpeel it, what happens in 24-48 hours? It gets brown," Dr. Nish says. "What's happening is the sugars in that banana are reacting with proteins, causing cross-linking and the brown color (browning reaction). The exact same reaction is happening in our bodies. We're browning from the inside out…Table sugar is made of a glucose and fructose molecule, and it's the fructose in sugar that accelerates the "browning" reaction by seven times. Skin is composed of collagen and elastin, which make our skin supple and soft. Sugar causes cross-linking of collagen, resulting in stiffening and loss of elasticity of our skin. The more sugar we have, the more our skin starts to suffer."

Dr. Nish lists the following as ways sugar takes its toll on the skin:

Increased acne

Appearance of wrinkles

Sagging in neck and chin

Development of dark spots

Slower healing of cuts, scraps, etc."


Microneedling with Radio Frequency


Microneedling with radio frequency has become one of the most talked about beauty trends that can help dramatically improve concerns like skin texture, eye bags, acne scars and pore size. People are raving about the cosmetic treatment that you can do at home with the right equipment that can cost anywhere from $875 and upwards to over $4,000. Or you can see a dermatologist where you can expect to pay $200 to $700 per session. Although the number of sessions can vary, most people need three to six before seeing results. 

Dr Jonathan M. Fields DAOM Functional Medicine, Acupuncture, Herbs, Stem Cells & PRP, Tai Chi, Qi Gong, Sports Medicine, Primary Care tells us, "If you want to look younger, the hottest new skin tightening and fat remodeling treatment is microneedling with radio frequency. Devices like the morpheus8 are clinically proven to help with skin laxity and are the method of choice for celebrities like the Kardashians. Microneedling and radio frequency are completely natural methods to encourage your skin to build collagen and elasticity while being minimally invasive. There is no surgery and no injections of any potentially toxic materials in the process. Microneedling works just like acupuncture. It creates small holes and triggers your body's natural healing ability. Radio frequency gently warms the deep layers of skin to promote circulation and regeneration."


Eat More Protein

protein sources

Eating protein is not only good for maintaining overall health, but for youthful looking skin, according to experts. Eat This, Not That! medical board members  Lyssie Lakatos, RDN, CDN, CFT and Tammy Lakatos Shames, RDN, CDN, CFT, The Nutrition Twins and founders of The 21-Day Body Reboot tell Eat This, "While protein is essential for building and repairing cells and tissue, it's also a critical component of collagen, an important building block in skin that helps keep it firm, elastic, and looking youthful." Certified personal trainer Bishnu Pada Das agrees and tells us, "Protein is very important for our skin. It helps build collagen, which is essential to make smoother and wrinkle-free skin. The best protein sources you can add to your diet are chicken, fish, eggs, cottage cheese, peanut butter, lentils, etc."

Mitchelle Wright, RDN, a registered dietitian nutritionist and the founder and editor at  expands on the importance of collagen and tells Eat This, "Collagen occurs naturally in the body but is broken down and produced less effectively with age," she says. "Therefore, eating protein-rich foods that help collagen synthesis can promote healthy skin that looks younger." Plant-based proteins also support healthier-looking skin as you age thanks to their antioxidant levels. "While [some] animal-based protein options create inflammation and damage the skin from their saturated fat content, plant-based protein sources, such as pistachios, contain antioxidants that help to keep the body youthful by preventing inflammation that harms the skin and causes it to look weathered," add The Nutrition Twins.


Have a Good Skincare Routine

Mature woman inspecting her skin in front of the bathroom mirror.

Dr. Factor explains, "The deterioration of the skin morphology and physiology is the first and earliest obvious harbinger of the aging process which is progressively manifested with increasing age. Such deterioration affects the vital functions of the skin such as homeodynamic regulation of body temperature, fluid balance, loss of electrolytes and proteins, production of vitamin D, waste removal, immune surveillance, sensory perception, and protection of other organs against deleterious environmental factors. There are, however, harmful chemicals and toxins found in everyday cosmetics that consumers are now aware of. Thus, the natural beauty industry is on the rise with innovative technology and high-performance ingredients as more consumers demand healthier options. 

Therefore, the aims of this review are to give some critical insights to the effects of both intrinsic and extrinsic factors on excessive or premature skin aging and to elaborate on the relevance of natural beauty and natural anti-aging skincare approaches that will help consumers, scientists and entrepreneurs make the switch. Our recent investigations have shown the potential and relevance of identifying more resources from our rich natural heritage from various plant sources such as leaves, fruits, pomace, seeds, flowers, twigs and so on which can be explored for natural anti-aging skincare product formulations. These trending narratives have started to gain traction among researchers and consumers owing to the sustainability concern and impact of synthetic ingredients on human health and the environment. The natural anti-aging ingredients, which basically follow hormetic pathways, are potentially useful as moisturizing agents; barrier repair agents; antioxidants, vitamins, hydroxy acids, skin lightening agents, anti-inflammatory ingredients, and sunblock ingredients."

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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