Some vitamins are antioxidants and clinical studies have found that certain of these are effective in preventing damage, or correcting damage such as reducing wrinkles and dark spots.
According to Drs Rick and Arlene Noodleman, the husband-and-wife physician team Age Defying Dermatology, in certain cases, ‘taking your vitamins’ means applying them on your skin so they can work from the outside-in, the physicians say.
The 3 vitami-teers
“There is significant scientific evidence that the form of vitamin A called retinoid, when applied topically, can treat damage caused by sun exposure,” says Dr Arlene Noodleman, whilst husband Rick adds that vitamin C can be much more effective when applied topically than taken orally.
“That’s because vitamin C is relatively unstable,” he says. “It quickly oxidizes when exposed to air and in certain other conditions. So, to get the full benefit, you would need it in much greater amounts than you would normally consume in a tablet. You can get that benefit by using a topical formulation.”
Dr Rick advises people to look for ‘stable’ vitamin C of the L-ascorbic variety, which offers the best protection against sun damage, as it encourages production of collagen.
Vitamin B3 completes the recommended vitamin hat trick as it has been shown to boost collagen production also and reduce dark spots.
The two doctors advise that, for best results, people should buy these topical vitamin products at concentrations that have proved effective, and use them for the length of time recommended.
Aging is something we all have to deal with, and according to a new poll by Penn Schoen Berland, worrying about wrinkles, dark spots and other aging skin concerns aren’t all vanity.
Forty-two percent of women ages 50 to 59 believe they need to look young to be successful at work, with both men and women becoming more anxious about looking older.
The Noodlemans believe the biggest battle we face is with damage due to free radicals, which are oxygen molecules that have lost electrons through oxidation, making them unstable; and the antioxidants found in vitamins could help combat this.
“If your body doesn’t have enough antioxidants to stabilize them and render them harmless, they can damage cell membranes, which eventually breaks down the proteins that support and plump the skin,” explains Dr Arlene Noodleman.
“What’s worse, those free radical oxygen molecules are always looking to stabilize themselves by swiping electrons from stable molecules, which creates even more free radicals,” adds Dr Rick. “We have lots of natural defenses against free radicals, but as we age, we begin to lose them.”