ASCP Skin Deep


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Page 31 of 84 29 expertadvice FEED YOUR FACE Go Nuts Get more vitamin E in your diet for healthy, gorgeous skin by Alex Caspero There's a reason vitamin E is in all your favorite skin care products. With its potent antioxidant properties, vitamin E has a powerful effect when it comes to protecting your skin cells against damage. Vitamin E accumulates in sebaceous glands, found at the base of hair follicles. From there, it's delivered to the skin's surface through sebum, a natural oil that coats and lubricates the skin's outer layer. As vitamin E's primary function is to act as an antioxidant, its location in the skin protects against harmful UV rays, especially when paired with its antioxidant counterpart, vitamin C. As we age, vitamin E becomes even more important, especially to those who spend a lot of time outdoors or tanning. Both of these factors cause the natural concentration of vitamin E in our skin to decline, reducing antioxidant function and accelerating skin aging. While there are eight forms of vitamin E, the one we want to focus on is alpha- tocopherol. This form is easiest for our bodies to absorb and metabolize—both from food and in topical skin care products. This version is abundant in the Western diet and while most of us get enough, there's no harm in packing your diet with more antioxidants. When you think of vitamin E, think nuts! Wheat germ, sunfl ower seeds, hazelnuts, and almonds are all sources of vitamin E. Leafy greens and heart-healthy avocados also pack a vitamin E punch.

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