Quick Guide: Common Foods and Drinks That Make You Feel and Look Older

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While we know that aging is a natural process, and that certain food can help us keep our body younger, we should know that we also consume a lot of food that make us look and feel older, and in turn influence on our physical and mental performance.

The food we eat, or don’t eat, can speed up the aging process. The problem with the food that accelerates aging is that we are consuming it every day. Some of these foods and drinks we do need for some important processes in the body; however, we need to learn how to balance the intake of these foods to be able to satisfy the daily intake, while slowing down the aging process. Read on to see which foods and drinks you should avoid and why.

 

Salt influences the skin by affecting collagen

Salt influences the skin by affecting collagen

We need salt for numerous reasons, however, high levels of sodium lead to high blood pressure, and high blood pressure can weaken the skin by reducing the collagen. The lack of collagen produces wrinkles, especially in thin skin areas such as eyes. Another consequence of large intakes of salt is puffy eyes.

According to the American Heart Association, people with high blood pressure should not consume more than 1,500 mg of sodium on a daily basis. For others, no more than 2,300 mg is recommended. High amount of salt also leaves you feeling bloated, thus makes you look tired and worn out. As an alternative, season your food with spices instead, such as fresh herbs.

 

Sugar affects blood vessels, thus accelerates skin’s aging

Sugar affects blood vessels, thus accelerates skin’s aging

Sugar can overload insulin pathway, which affects blood vessels and influence on the skin’s aging process. When we consume sugar, sugar is converted to glucose in the body, and when enters the bloodstream sugar is searching for skin proteins to attach to. They form new molecules called advanced-glycation products (AGEs), and the more AGEs we create by consuming sugar, the bigger is the impact on skin’s elasticity and firmness.

Too much sugar leads to sagging and wrinkled skin. To satisfy your sweet tooth, opt for fruits because natural sugars are more complex and the body processes them more slowly.

 

Coffee dehydrates the body causing skin dryness

Coffee dehydrates the body causing skin dryness

Coffee has numerous aging effects, and one of the most obvious is the dryness of the skin that appears because of dehydration. Moreover, wrinkles around the eyes become more prominent when body is not properly hydrated as well. Coffee has other important benefits for our body, however, if you are a coffee addict, make sure you moisturize your skin properly. Another option is to substitute coffee with green tea, which has less dehydrating effects.

 

Alcohol causes puffy eyes

Alcohol contributes to dehydration of the body, pulling water out of the cells. Lack of water in the cells causes puffy eyes, which make you look older and exhausted. Moreover, when we drink alcohol we are also tempted to reach for salty snacks, like chips and pretzels, increasing sodium levels in the body. When drinking alcohol, keep your body hydrated with one extra glass of water.

 

Soda affects teeth and skin due to the high acidic content

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Soda wears away tooth enamel, making teeth more susceptible to decay, and with such vulnerable teeth, your smile can make your face look haggard and old. Soda also has high levels of sodium, and sodium affects the skin. It is also probable that soda drinkers will reach for more sweet foods and snacks rather than reaching for water. Moreover, more sweet food will cause puffiness and dull skin. Opt for fruit-infused water instead of regular or diet soda.

 

Energy drinks cause sleep deprivation and in turn puffy eyes and cranky disposition

Energy drinks are loaded with caffeine, and caffeine interferes with normal sleep. Lack of sleep causes puffy eyes, and skin dullness. The worst is that people who usually drink energy drinks decrease the intake of water, and poor hydration accelerates skin-aging process, causing wrinkles and fine lines.

 

Simple carbs cause skin inflammation

White bread and pasta (high in glycemic index) produce reactive oxygen species and cause skin inflammation. Simple carbs break down collagen and elastin, resulting in skin plumpness and depriving the skin from healthy glow. When you crave carbs, opt for those complex ones, like whole grains, because the body processes these carbs more slowly than the simple carbs.

 

Trans fats clog arteries and make you look older

salmon burger for anxious people

Trans fats, found in processed foods such as fast foods and margarine, clog the arteries and take away the skin’s elasticity because water cannot get through. However, you should not cut off trans fats entirely, because natural monounsaturated fats found in olive and coconut oil, for instance, are rich in vitamin E that is necessary for skin; vitamin E protects against oxidation and free radicals that affects the skin and result in fast aging.

 

Spicy foods can dilate blood vessels resulting in skin’s less youthful look

Although hot peppers are great for metabolism, they can be very bad for some people’s skin. Spicy food can also dilate blood vessels in those who are going through menopause. By dilating blood vessels, skin will look less clear and youthful. However, although spicy food can make the skin older, the effect on skin is temporary and mild.

 

Candies increase inflammation, especially in those who suffer from aching joint

Apart from weight gain, and effects of sugar crush (tiredness, fatigue, and weariness), candies are very destructive for our entire system. Sugar in candies boosts inflammation and those who suffer from aching joints, sugar makes even more tired and physically exhausted. Cakes, doughnuts, brownies and other sugary items are one of the worst enemies for the skin. These foods make skin more fragile, thin and brittle, causing wrinkles. Try to substitute candies and other sweet food with natural sweets.

 

Red meat causes wrinkles and premature aging

A study showed that eating meat more than once a week cause wrinkles and pose a serious health risk. Red meat is high in carnitine, a compound abundant in animal protein, which can harden blood vessel walls and cause premature skin aging. However, you should not avoid red meat because of the great amount of B12 that is crucial for red blood cells and brain function. If you love red meat, limit your intakes.

 

What else can contribute to premature aging?

loose weight without diet or excercise

Rapidly and repeatedly losing and gaining weight, that is yo-yo dieting, is also one of the actions that cause premature aging. Yo-yo dieting alters the ligaments in the face that support soft tissue and changes the actual shape of the face, and these changes make us look older as well.

Chronic stress makes you look older, and it causes you to become physically older as well. Stress can cause dark circles and wrinkles, and can lead to acne, hives, hair loss, and brittle nails.

Skipping meals is worse than eating crabs or sugar. It puts you at much higher risk of overeating, leading you to increase weight, which causes you to feel lethargic and look older as well.

Now that you are more familiar with foods and drinks that make you look and feel older, try to adjust your diets and to balance intake of certain foods. Consult with your doctor or nutritionist to determine healthy diet that can help you feel and look younger, or keep your youthful look.

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