Happy New Year

Health & Beauty

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My wish for you is that this New Year be one of happiness and a time when you are able to accomplish the goals you set for yourself. As we look forward to the year ahead of us, it is normal to reflect on the past and evaluate our successes and also when we failed to reach as far as we had hoped. Now is the time to address the changes we want to make and to take steps to achieve them. This may be the year you plan to learn a new skill, to spend money more wisely and save more, or to spend more time and energy on worthy causes.  For many of us a reoccurring New Year’s resolution is to establish a healthier life style. This usually includes getting more exercise and eating more nutritious foods.  We know we will feel better and be more attractive in appearance if we stay the course.

Currently, we have thoroughly documented research findings proving that regular exercise, particularly aerobic exercise, which increases circulation and heartrate, is extremely beneficial. As fresh blood flows through our systems, our brains function more effectively, our skin takes on a healthy glow, and our bodies become stronger and firmer. A second component of a healthy lifestyle is to choose a nutritious diet. Again there are several levels of benefit from this choice. We feel better, look better, and are generally happier and more satisfied with ourselves. Indeed research has found direct correlation between exercise and nutrition and an individual’s emotional outlook. A third component, not to be overlooked is to get adequate sleep of seven to eight hours each night. Sleep is vital for both our physical and emotional wellbeing. The joy of feeling good and looking good makes it much easier to achieve the goals we set for ourselves this year — 2017.

As we enter a new year I want to remind you of a few simple basics of skin care that can make a significant difference in both its tone and texture. If you ask about maintaining a “good” skin for life, the primary admonishment you will receive from dermatologists is to always protect your skin from the sun. This means do not go out, even on cloudy days, without applying a broad spectrum sunscreen of at least an SPF 30 to all areas of your body that will be exposed.  If you are where you perspire or in the water, sunscreen must be reapplied frequently. There seems to be a general consensus that extremely high listings of SPF are not actually more effective than a 30 to 45 SPF. They may actually be harmful as they contain more chemicals. A second warning you will probably receive is to never, never smoke because it damages your entire body and is nowhere more visible than on your face.

As we age, maintaining a healthy skin on our entire bodies, especially our faces and necks, requires time and effort as well as being savvy about which skin products really contain ingredients that deliver the results they claim. Unfortunately manufacturers and sales people have the freedom to advertise any product as being a miracle treatment, no matter that it contains absolutely nothing to support that. Do some research and learn to discern what labels reveal. Old fashion Vaseline – petroleum jelly – is a good product that has been around for years and is used for a number of skin ailments, primarily for dry cracked skin. However if it is put into new packaging, labeled Antiaging Formula,   and priced at $150.00 there is good reason to be skeptical. As a consultant for Rodan and Fields, an excellent company with an outstanding research team, I have learned that there are few products that can honestly claim to minimize or delay the aging process. Those products that contain Retin- A, vitamin C, or peptides are generally excellent choices. All of the antioxidants – A, B, C, and
E – are considered worthy of the term anti-aging. It is also important to remember that the listing of ingredients is in descending order. The first three or so make up the bulk of the content; therefore, if retinol (a derivative of retain A) is listed as the last of ten ingredients, there is probably not enough of it to be very effective. On the other hand, if Retin-A is listed first you are probably holding an excellent product. It will, most likely, be expensive. Products containing alcohol or mineral oil are to be avoided. One final reminder, hot water and soap are great for dishes and clothes, not for our bodies, especially our faces.

Again, I wish you a happy, productive New Year filled with challenges and opportunities to grow. I like to hear from you with comments, questions or concerns. Remember to smile. A smile is an instant facelift.

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