It is important to maintain your skin from inside out for having a healthy and youthful skin. You must combine a right diet, certain supplements and change your lifestyle to ensure a healthy skin throughout your life. Read on to know eight natural skin care tips by Dr. Andrew Weil.
1. Know About Any Changes in Your Skin
Skin cancer is a risk for everyone and not just for people who live in the sunny areas or who have fairer skin. You must always look for any changes in your skin to reduce the risk of developing melanoma by almost 63%. Dr. Weil provides tips to help you with self-examination of your skin.
- Observe any kind of changes in your skin such as nodules, bumps, moles, or freckles.
- Look for freckles or moles having irregular borders, different colors (most commonly black), signs of pallor or inflammation, or an increase in size.
- Check if your moles or freckles are very large in size (bigger than size of a pencil eraser) and do not heal after injury or are scaly or scabby.
In case you notice any such changes in your skin, you must immediately visit a dermatologist for figuring out the exact cause of these changes. Also, you can prevent yourself from melanoma by using hats, sunglasses, UV-protecting clothing, and sunscreen with SPF greater than 15.
2. Naturally Combat Dry Skin
If your skin is dry, scaly, or tight, you can use different sources of essential fatty acids. Black currant oil, borage oil, evening primrose oil are all great sources of gamma-linolenic acid (GLA), which promotes growth of skin, nails, and hair. Out of these three oils, black currant oil is the most economical option. You can consume 500 mg of this oil twice in a day for best results. It would take time to observe the changes. In six to eight weeks you will be able to see the positive results.
3. Understand Eczema
Eczema is a common skin condition which is characterized by scaly, red dry patches. These patches are extremely troublesome and itchy. It is common among children, adults and even infants. Dermatologists treat eczema with topically applied steroids. Steroids just suppress the problem temporarily and might aggravate it with time. Steroids might also significantly impact a patient’s immunity. Dr. Weil suggests natural treatments for eczema as given below:
- If suffering from eczema you must completely eliminate all milk products from your diet. You must also avoid products made in partially hydrogenated vegetable oils which are usually found in baked foods and snacks. Also avoid consuming trans-fats found commonly in vegetable shortening and margarine.
- Consume 500 gms of black-currant oil two times a day. It is rich in gamma-linolenic acid (GLA), which promotes growth of nails, skin and hair. You would start to notice the positive results in few weeks. Children younger than 12 must consume half the dose recommended for adults.
- Apply aloe vera extract to the affected skin areas. You can opt for aloe vera gel or moisturizers too. Alternatively, you can also apply calendula cream to the affected skin areas.
- You can also experiment with salves and lotions containing Larrea divaricata or chaparral. This is a desert plant which is used in Mexican medicines for treating several skin conditions.
- Hypnotherapy and visualization can also positively impact skin conditions. You must also try to relax, as stress can aggravate your skin problem. You can also explore several relaxation techniques like yoga and breathing exercises.
You must bathe quickly while you are suffering from eczema. It is best to use a non-perfumed light moisturizing soap. Apply a generous amount of moisturizer soon after bathing. Do not dry out your body by rubbing it with a towel. Alternatively, you can try bathing in hot springs. Many Japanese doctors recommend bathing in hot springs for naturally treating eczema. You can take a dip in hot springs to see if it works for you or not.
4. Use Aloe Vera for Common Skin Burns, Rashes, and Irritation
Aloe vera gel can treat various of your skin woes. It is quite inexpensive and can naturally treat skin ailments including first or second-degree burns, skin inflammation, irritations, sunburns, mosquito bites and skin rashes. Look out for an aloe vera plant near your home, cut open a leaf and apply aloe vera gel generously to the affected skin areas. You can also choose lotions with higher percentage of aloe vera extract or gel-based products. Aloe vera can sometimes delay the surgical healing of wounds, so you must always consult your doctor before using aloe vera over burns (or if your burns have significant blistering).
5. Try Calendula for Cracked Skin
If your dry skin is getting worse each day, you can find relief in the petals of ornamental “marigold” flower. Calendula officinalis is available in oil, tinctures, creams, and lotions. A 10% extract of calendula in the products can be a perfect solution to your dry skin. An effective and gentle remedy is to wash the affected skin areas with diluted solution of calendula tincture. You can also apply commercially available calendula skin products directly over your dry and cracked skin areas. Dr. Weil stresses that calendula is rather safe and effective in treating skin rashes, skin irritations, acne, minor burns, eczema and even diaper rash.
6. Prevent Acne
Acne is a common problem among teenagers and adults. Excessive stress, hormonal fluctuations and genetic predisposition can lead to skin breakouts what we generally call pimples or blemishes. Dr. Weil advises use of mild glycerin soaps, topical application of benzoyl peroxide or tea tree oil. He also recommends few dietary changes for reducing and preventing acne.
- Increase consumption of anti-oxidant rich foods such as green leafy vegetables and citrus fruits.
- Eat foods that are rich in omega-3 fatty acids like ground flaxseeds or Alaskan salmon, these reduce and prevent skin inflammation.
- You must consume lots of water each day to keep your skin supple and hydrated. Limit intake of refined and processed foods. Choose whole and healthier foods.
Dr. Weil recommends eating a piece of dark chocolate once in a while, as it provides anti-oxidants.
7. Treat Corns
Corns are generally formed by friction or pressure from shoes that are either too loose or too tight. In medical terms, they are known as hyperkeratoses of the skin which is hardening and thickening of the skin with a deep-seated nucleation or core. Corns can make standing or walking significantly difficult. The first thing you should do is to find the right pair of shoes for you which is neither too large nor too small. The shoes with a perfect size will prevent corns from forming. In case you already have corns, you can follow the below-given tips by Dr. Weil.
- Use a pumice stone to reduce thickness of your corn(s). You can soak your feet in warm water before rubbing the corn.
- Use non-medicated pads or moleskin to reduce pain and pressure.
- Avoid using very tight socks or stockings that exert pressure over corns.
- Limit use of high-heeled footwear, as these exert pressure on the fore-foot area where corns develop.
Consider consulting a podiatrist for the treatment of corns, if the above remedies don’t provide you much relief.
8. Reduce Body Odor Naturally
Perspiration is generally odorless, but bacterial breakdown of body’s sweat causes odor. Dr. Weil gives certain tips to reduce body odor naturally.
- Splash a few drops of rubbing alcohol to reduce bacterial activity.
- Don’t use antiperspirants rather go for products with natural ingredients like green tea extracts.
- Buy “natural crystals” which do not have any aluminum content.
- Coffee, tea and other stimulant drugs might lead to body odor by increasing activity of apocrine glands, that are associated with producing strong smelly secretions. Avoid coffee if you have persistent body odor problems.
Follow these natural tips to reduce and prevent any type of skin conditions.