Is Your Skin Ready for More Time Outdoors?

As we look forward to warmer weather and enjoying more time outside, it is wise to first consider what that means for our health, especially our skin.

While sunlight, or more specifically its ultraviolet B rays, is important for boosting our skin cells’ ability to produce vitamin D, it is only needed in small doses. A fair-skinned person in shorts and a tank top, unprotected by sunscreen, soaking in the midday summer sun for just 10 minutes can produce more than needed.

If you are going to spend an extended amount of time under those powerful rays—no matter the time of year (UVA rays penetrate clouds and glass)—protect the largest organ of your body from cell death, premature aging, immune system suppression and DNA damage that can lead to cancer. Cover up with UV-blocking clothing, hats, sunglasses (UV rays damage your eyes too) and sunblock or sunscreen with broad spectrum protection (against both UVA and UVB rays) and an SPF of 30 or higher. Seek the shade when you can, especially between 10 a.m. and 4 p.m. when the sun is at its strongest.

In addition to these external measures, we can help our skin year round from the inside out to deal with UV damage and other skin health issues like dry skin, laxity, wrinkles, wound healing and aging by making sure we get the nutrients our skin cells need to function well and fight back.

Pycnogenol®
Pycnogenol, in addition to many other health benefits, is a natural antioxidant that has been shown to inhibit damage caused by UV radiation.

Food Sources: The active ingredients of Pycnogenol can be found in peanut skins and grape seeds, but not many of us tend to eat those.

Reliv Sources: Reliv Now® with Whey or Soy and Fit3™ Active

Retinoids
Retinoids refers to vitamin A (a.k.a. retinol) and the compounds that are derived from vitamin A such as retinoic acid. Skin is highly responsive to retinoids, but both UVA and UVB destroy Vitamin A.

Vitamin A is also critical for a healthy immune system because it maintains the integrity and function of skin and mucosal cells, our first line of defense. A lack of sufficient vitamin A has been linked to inflammation of the skin and, for some people, taking vitamin A supplements could reduce the inflammation that contributes to acne. Additionally Vitamin A is important for wound healing.

Food Sources: sweet potatoes, raw carrots, mangos, cantaloupe, spinach, broccoli, kale, milk, eggs, and cod liver oil.

Reliv Sources: Reliv Now® with Whey or Soy, Reliv Classic®, Reliv Now® for Kids, FibRestore®, Innergize!®, and Fit3™ Active.

Selenium
Selenium is an essential trace mineral that has been shown to protect skin cells from UV radiation. Selenium deficiency can also impair the immune system.

Food Sources: Plant sources include brazil nuts, puffed wheat, whole-wheat bread, oatmeal, tuna, halibut, sardines, shrimp, beef and turkey.

Reliv Sources: Reliv Now® with Whey or Soy, Reliv Classic®, Reliv Now® for Kids.

Zinc
Zinc is another essential trace mineral in the body. It is found mostly in the skeletal muscles and bones, but it is also stored in the skin. By stabilizing skin cell membranes, it protects against oxidative stress and toxins. A deficiency in zinc can also delay wound healing.

Zinc oxide is a common sunscreen ingredient because it absorbs and reflects both UVA and UVB radiation.

Food Sources: wheat germ, pumpkin and squash seeds, cashews, cacao, beans, oysters, beef, crab and lobster.

Reliv Sources: Reliv Now® with Whey or Soy, Reliv Classic®, Reliv Now® for Kids, Innergize!®, and Fit3™ Active.

These are just a handful of the many essential nutrients our skin needs to function well and protect itself. The best approach to skin care, as in all areas of our health, is a proactive one, so be sure to take care — inside and out.

This statement has not been evaluated by the FDA. Reliv products are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease.

Sources

http://health.usnews.com/health-news/family-health/heart/articles/2008/06/23/time-in-the-sun-how-much-is-needed-for-vitamin-d

http://www.webmd.com/vitamins-and-supplements/news/20140130/vitamin-d-faq

http://www.skincancer.org/prevention/uva-and-uvb/understanding-uva-and-uvb

http://www.skincancer.org/prevention/sun-protection/prevention-guidelines

S. Iravani and B. Zolfaghari, PhD. Pharmaceutical and nutraceutical effects of Pinus pinaster bark extract. Res Pharm Sci. 2011 Jan-Jun; 6(1): 1–11. http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3203267/

http://lpi.oregonstate.edu/infocenter/vitamins/vitaminA/

McKenzie RC. Selenium, ultraviolet radiation and the skin. Clin Exp Dermatol. 2000;25(8):631-636. http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/11167979

http://ods.od.nih.gov/factsheets/Selenium-HealthProfessional/#h3

http://jn.nutrition.org/content/130/5/1360S/T2.expansion.html

Mitchnick MA, Fairhurst D, Pinnell SR. Microfine zinc oxide (Z-cote) as a photostable UVA/UVB sunblock agent. J Am Acad Dermatol. 1999;40(1):85-90. http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/9922017

[xxviii] http://ods.od.nih.gov/factsheets/Zinc-HealthProfessional/#h3

Arm Yourself in the Battle Against Prostate Cancer

SubscribeButton-webMen'sHealth-webAccording to the American Cancer Society (ACS), prostate cancer is now the most common type of cancer in American men. Approximately 1 in 6 men in the United States will develop prostate cancer during his lifetime, and similar rates are occurring throughout the world.

Who’s At Risk

Prostate cancer occurs in men only and the risk of developing the disease increases rapidly after age 50. More than 70 percent of all new prostate cancers are diagnosed in men over age 65.

Race is also a determining factor. African American men have the highest documented prostate cancer rate in the world. Other risk factors include heredity, a high-fat diet, and a sedentary lifestyle.

What You Can Do

To start, get active, keep your weight under control and eat a low-fat diet rich in fruits and vegetables. The Prostate Cancer Research Institute (PCRI) also recommends that men with a family history of prostate cancer or breast cancer on their mother’s side have a yearly PSA blood test and digital rectal exam beginning between the ages of 35 and 40. Men with no family history of prostate or breast cancer should begin annual testing at 40.

The antioxidants vitamin E and selenium may also help reduce prostate cancer risk. Two previous studies into other cancers showed that vitamin E and selenium cut prostate cancer risk by 30 to 60 percent. Because of those findings, the National Cancer Institute and a network of researchers known as the Southwest Oncology Group have launched the Selenium and Vitamin E Cancer Prevention Trial, or SELECT. The study will follow 32,400 healthy men, aged 55 and older (50 and older for African Americans) for 12 years.

In the meantime, the PCRI recommends both vitamin E and selenium as part of a healthy diet to reduce the risk of prostate cancer. Selenium is found in meat, seafood and Brazil nuts. Good sources of vitamin E are vegetables, vegetable oil, nuts and egg yolks. Vitamin E and selenium are also found in Reliv Classic®, Reliv Now® and Slimplicity® meal replacement. SoySentials® and FibRestore® are good sources of vitamin E.

From Reliv’s Science & Health Today newsletter. Print full issue.