Ya'll, nothing is more frustrating than doing all the work to get great skin and buying all the best products and still looking in the mirror and feeling run down. Especially with winter in full - well, not bloom, but - anyway winter is here and it's a definite weight on the skin. So what do we do? Are we doomed to dried out, over worked skin? NO More! Teri Lang Patterson is the founder of Body Systems' Skincare Co., a Certified Group Fitness Instructor, and a good friend and she's put her knowledge of body ins and outs together to form a combination of great products and great results. It comes down to a few simple rules to follow that make this whole New Years Resolution thing a whole lot easier, and gives your skin that extra needed TLC. Read Teri's expert advice below and tell us if you'll be implementing these steps into your New Year's Resolution schedule.
by Teri Lang Patterson: Certified Group Fitness Instructor & Founder of Body Systems' Skincare Co.
Key Elements to a Healthy Lifestyle + Glowing Skin
January 16, 2016
Life is difficult.
And your body's needs.
I'm simplifying but I know you know exactly what I mean. You wake up from a partial night's sleep and no time to workout, then you're late getting little ones ready and you rush through the business day. Then it's already time for supper, bath and bed. Where did the day go? Did I eat healthy and workout?
Heck no...I can't even remember if everyone got their teeth brushed and matching socks.
So I'll try again tomorrow. Same thing happens. Then the New Year approaches and you vow to make some changes. You vow to make plans for meal prep on Sundays, early morning workouts and all the water you can stomach. Maybe this works for a week or two but then life happens...again. It doesn't have to be such a commitment. It doesn't have to be so difficult or a major change in your lifestyle. But changes need to happen, right? The "busy-ness" has to make room for 3 key elements for your body to stay healthy and to look and feel your best.
You can make room for 3 Key Elements, Right?
The number one change for glowing skin and feeling better is water. You've heard it before that water is better for you and you need it to feel good and yeah, yeah, yeah. But did you know why?
Water is necessary for the body to do it's "job" of flushing out toxins.
Toxins are a general term but includes fat, inflammation and stomach waste. When we do not drink enough water the body slows down. It can't eliminate fat fluids, or inflammation and waste. The body becomes toxic and it shows in your energy levels and then shows in your skin. The skin shows sign of dehydration almost immediately. As we age, cells in the epidermis are replaced by cells that have less water which look more dull and less plump. A baby has about 80% hydration in the outer cells while an older person has about 50%. Naturally as we age our cells can only handle so much water but a 60-70% range is a goal. So how do you know if you are getting enough water? Most people feel "run down" if they are lacking in water. Extreme dehydration causes all cells to lack energy. Creating a groggy or foggy mind and extreme fatigue. Retention of good fluid is a challenge for me due to thyroid and adrenal issues. That's another post all together but for this example, autoimmune disorders cause excess bad inflammation and difficulty retaining good fluid. I use a scale just about every morning which monitors my fat% and my water%. If you don't have one I strongly suggest getting one. If my fat% goes up a couple of points, then I know that my body isn't eliminating the bad inflammation. I also have trouble keeping a high level of good hydration. About 58% is the best I can do. Many healthy adults can do about 60-70%.
So how much is "enough"? I get this question all the time as a fitness instructor. Over the years I've developed a good estimate for those that are fairly active, which is to drink half your body weight in ounces each day. So a 150lb woman would aim for about 75oz per day. Of course this is not set in stone but aim for that calculation and monitor how you feel. There is such a thing as too much water. Note that most "tips" I give are based on personal experience. I had, at one time, lowered my salt intake and increased my water thinking that well of course a gallon of water is great to aim for. Well I remember becoming so dizzy and weak that I couldn't walk up the stairs. Then realizing that I had been drinking way too much water for what my body could handle at that time.
Too much water basically starts to flush out too many nutrients and minerals and causing more harm.
So constantly monitor how you feel and remember that there is no one perfect number of ounces that works for everyone.
Oh here we go. Yes we need to workout more. Well that's true and false. Find exercise that you enjoy and makes you feel more energized and not fatigued.
There's good exercise and then there's too much which causes stress on the body which increases bad inflammation in the cells.
Everyone has been taught that to loose weight and feel better you exercise to an extreme. You workout faster and longer and you'll feel awesome. Well for most female adults we have hormones and some level of inflammation/stressors on the body. Hard exercise actually creates more stress on the body and the cells will then retain more of that inflammation making it harder to get good fluid in and out. Start slow and increase to a point that still makes you feel good and energized. The body doesn't need more stress. We have enough in our everyday lives. Some people can go running for miles and feel great and their body functions great and they have no issues. For many of us, excessive exercise causes more stress which means more cortisol hormone. What does this mean to your skin? Stress causes a chemical reaction that basically makes your skin more sensitive and reactive. If your skin is reacting in this way, then the body has a harder time healing the cells or making sure cell turnover occurs.
My suggestion? It's really vague to say, "well...choose exercises that you enjoy". But that's the truth. You know if you find a workout you enjoy. Some like to do group exercises that are fun like Zumba. Some like to put in a DVD at home on their own schedule. Find something that you enjoy that makes you feel energized afterwards. It's fine to feel a little tired but if you're feeling completely wiped out even after an hour then it was too stressful on your body.
Find that balance of a variety of workouts that include:
some longer less stressful ones
some stretching exercises.
But find things you enjoy and work the best with your body. Less stress means healthier skin.
Oh this is everyone's favorite topic. Eat better and you'll feel better and have model perfect skin. That was easy wasn't it? So how to we start? Take a look at your overall diet. I always suggest adding in good super foods and then when you start seeing a difference and start actually enjoying those foods you can start to eliminate those bad foods. I'm going to emphasize that not all foods work for all bodies. What? Now I'm taking crazy for sure! Not really. Here's what I mean. As a teenager I never had any acne. No blemishes and no real issues. Then in my late 20s and early 30s I started getting acne.
Acne that just started appearing for no external reason and just didn't respond to topical help.
I finally did a comprehensive food allergy testing that showed all of the foods that I was allergic and sensitive to. This was a huge eye opener for me. As long as I completely eliminate those foods from my diet then my skin stays clear. When I do break out now, I know that it's probably internal and caused by food sensitivities or in a recent episode it was lymph glands blocked. It's always something isn't it? What people eat is directly related to their skin health and appearance. How do you know if your skin issues are food related? If you apply topical medication and the acne responds then it's not food related. I'm not down playing acne or skin issues but know that all acne is not the same.
Start adding in nutrient dense foods and then start eliminating processed sugar, packaged foods and bad fats.
You'll start to love those super foods and making small changes aren't as stressful. Baby steps. Remember everything doesn't have to be perfect. Everything doesn't have to happen over night. A lifestyle change takes time. If you slip up that's fine. That's real life. Just know that you have another chance tomorrow to do better.
So now what?
Tomorrow start drinking more water.
Start to figure out how to add in exercise. If you hate mornings, then don't expect a 5:30am spin class will continue in the long run. Maybe 30 min on the treadmill walking while supper is cooking. Bored on the treadmill? Grab your tablet and catch up on episodes of Downton Abby and the time will fly by PLUS you're decreasing stress at the same time.
Then think about adding in more veggies and fruit. Can you make a smoothie in the morning with some berries, coconut milk and kale? How about eliminating some grains during the day and switching starches foods like white potatoes to some sweet potato. Little steps build up to big changes that add up.
Are you glowing yet?
Well you will be. Remember to drink that water, reduce stressors that include too much on that To-Do list but this also includes stressors like excessive hard exercise and fear of failure. Then start adding in those super nutrient dense foods. Get to know your skin. Start noticing how it reacts to different foods and different activities. You want to detox and flush out inflammation and help the body easily restore hydrated skin cells by reducing those stressors. You can do it and the result will be your beautiful glowing skin!
Teri Lang Patterson / Owner, Body Systems
16 Viking Dr
Rapid City, SD 57701 USA