How is Sugar Affecting Your Skin?
Sugar is found in many obvious treats — Ice cream, brownies, cookies, doughnuts — but it’s also in some not so obvious foods — breakfast cereals, yogurt, condiments, crackers, and even fruits like grapes, apples, and bananas. The truth is that sugar is hard to avoid, and our bodies may even be addicted to it. And even though sugar tastes incredible and makes life truly enjoyable at times (who doesn’t like a good smoothie on a hot day?), it can have some significant negative health effects, including on our skin.
3 Negative Effects Sugar Has on Your Skin
When we consume sugar, those sugar cells attach themselves to fats and proteins. This process is known as glycation, which forms Advanced Glycation End-products (AGEs). AGEs cause protein fibers to become stiff and malformed. Most of the research surrounding AGEs is focused on the effects of sugar on patients with diabetes, but glycation also plays a significant role in the aging process.
Two proteins that are essential for keeping our skin looking firm and youthful are collagen and elastin. When sugar cells bind with collagen and elastin proteins, the effects will eventually show on our skin as wrinkles, saggy skin, dull-looking skin, and can lead to the formation of age spots. The breakdown of collagen and elastin is a key factor in the aging process. In addition, sugar, or glucose, creates free radicals. By damaging skin cells, free radicals also have a role in the aging process and the appearance of our skin.
When it comes to acne, sugar is nothing but bad. It comes down to how sugar affects our hormones. Consuming sugar causes our blood sugar to rise, leading to our bodies producing more of the hormone insulin. This causes a sex hormone androgen to stimulate the sebaceous glands, which produces a skin secretion known as sebum. Sebum is an oily substance that prevents skin cells from shedding, blocking the pore and leading to the formation of acne. This is why it’s so common for acne to be worse during puberty when androgens excessively stimulate sebaceous glands.
In addition, sugar also dehydrates the skin. This causes the sebaceous glands to secrete more sebum in order to moisturize the skin and recover hydration. Excess sebum can also clog pores and allow bacteria to grow, another factor in the formation of acne.
As mentioned above, consuming sugar causes blood sugar levels to rise. Although a small rise in blood sugar isn’t abnormal, a spike in blood sugar can activate inflammation, which is our body's defense against disease and infection. Inflammation is often associated with eczema flare-ups, which causes red, inflamed, and sensitive skin. Even when you don’t have eczema, inflammation can cause blemishes to be bigger and redder.
If you’re concerned about the health and appearance of your skin, one of the best ways you can protect your skin is to avoid sugar. But like we said, sugar is found in nearly all foods, so it can be incredibly difficult to keep a healthy diet without consuming any sugar.
At vYv, we have developed a powerful CBD and resveratrol supplement that offers a variety of natural health benefits. Resveratrol, a plant compound that is found in many foods, including grapes, has been shown to provide the body with antioxidant properties. Antioxidants benefit the body by neutralizing free radicals and reducing the effects of inflammation — helping to slow the aging process and help balance the body’s natural defenses.
The main advantage of a resveratrol supplement is that you can reap the health benefits of grapes, but without additional sugar or calories. Our natural supplement contains 50 mg of grape seed extract, which is rich in resveratrol; but unlike grapes, which are high in sugar, our supplement provides the resveratrol without the sugar!
Learn more about the resveratrol and CBD supplement from vYv, and start protecting your skin.